In a disturbing-but-not-surprising move, the U.S. military is contracting the development of small robotic biomimics for field deployment. Equipped with sensors and networked relays these robocritters will likely end up scurrying through apartment complexes at home and abroad, ala Minority Report. Expect swarming behaviors, social intelligence, and networked biometrics.
Everybody freeze for the spiders…
British defence giant BAE Systems is creating a series of tiny electronic spiders, insects and snakes that could become the eyes and ears of soldiers on the battlefield, helping to save thousands of lives [ed note: the video shows bugs being used to target a building for rocket attack].
Prototypes could be on the front line by the end of the year, scuttling into potential danger areas such as booby-trapped buildings or enemy hideouts to relay images back to troops safely positioned nearby.
Soldiers will carry the robots into combat and use a small tracked vehicle to transport them closer to their targets.
Then they would swarm into the building and relay images back to the soldiers’ hand-held or wrist-mounted computers, warning them of any threats inside.
BAE Systems has just signed a Â£19million contract to develop the robots for the US Army.