Archive for the ‘surveillance’ category: Page 2

Nov 25, 2023

Pentagon steps on AI accelerator as age of lethal autonomy looms

Posted by in categories: drones, military, robotics/AI, space, surveillance

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (AP) — Artificial intelligence employed by the U.S. military has piloted pint-sized surveillance drones in special operations forces’ missions and helped Ukraine in its war against Russia. It tracks soldiers’ fitness, predicts when Air Force planes need maintenance and helps keep tabs on rivals in space.

Now, the Pentagon is intent on fielding multiple thousands of relatively inexpensive, expendable AI-enabled autonomous vehicles by 2026 to keep pace with China. The ambitious initiative — dubbed Replicator — seeks to “galvanize progress in the too-slow shift of U.S. military innovation to leverage platforms that are small, smart, cheap, and many,” Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks said in August.

While its funding is uncertain and details vague, Replicator is expected to accelerate hard decisions on what AI tech is mature and trustworthy enough to deploy — including on weaponized systems.

Oct 20, 2023

Many potential pathways to future pandemic influenza

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health, surveillance

Influenza viruses are believed to have sparked at least 14 human pandemics in the past 500 years; the most devastating of which began in 1918. Yet, despite intense study and considerable advances in public health, virus surveillance and virology, there is no simple answer to this pressing question: when and how will the next flu pandemic arise?

NIAID scientists including Jeffery K. Taubenberger, M.D., Ph.D., consider the many potential pathways to future influenza pandemics in a new viewpoints essay in Science Translational Medicine. There are no hard and fast ‘rules’ specifying, for example, what characteristics a given avian influenza virus must possess to allow it to efficiently infect… More.

Influenza pandemics have emerged for centuries but still cannot be accurately predicted.

Oct 12, 2023

Operation Behind Predator Mobile Spyware Is ‘Industrial Scale’

Posted by in categories: internet, military, surveillance

Amnesty International’s Predator Files investigation traces the widespread abuse of spyware by some nations against their own citizens. The ops are “industrial scale.” @jaivijayan explains:

The Intellexa alliance has been using a range of tools for intercepting and subverting mobile and Wi-Fi technologies to deploy its surveillance tools, according to an investigation by Amnesty International and others.

Sep 26, 2023

AtlasNEST plans to deploy drones to enhance airport security

Posted by in categories: drones, security, surveillance

The operations are based on an outdoor docking system that incorporates the firm’s AtlasPRO tricopter drones meant for surveillance.

Providing fool-proof security at airports proves to be challenging due to various logistical limitations, primarily due to its size, even though the airport security system is typically organized clearly and logically.

Continue reading “AtlasNEST plans to deploy drones to enhance airport security” »

Sep 23, 2023

An NYPD security robot will be patrolling the Times Square subway station

Posted by in categories: law enforcement, mapping, robotics/AI, security, surveillance

The New York Police Department (NYPD) is implementing a new security measure at the Times Square subway station. It’s deploying a security robot to patrol the premises, which authorities say is meant to “keep you safe.” We’re not talking about a RoboCop-like machine or any human-like biped robot — the K5, which was made by California-based company Knightscope, looks like a massive version of R2-D2. Albert Fox Cahn, the executive director of privacy rights group Surveillance Technology Oversight Project, has a less flattering description for it, though, and told The New York Times that it’s like a “trash can on wheels.”

K5 weighs 420 pounds and is equipped with four cameras that can record video but not audio. As you can guess from the image above, the machine also doesn’t come with arms — it didn’t quite ignore Mayor Eric Adams’ attempt at making a heart. The robot will patrol the station from midnight until 6 AM throughout its trial run that’s running over the next two months. But K5 won’t be doing full patrols for a while, since it’s spending its first two weeks mapping out the station and roaming only the main areas and not the platforms.

It’s not quite clear if NYPD’s machine will be livestreaming its camera footage, and if law enforcement will be keeping an eye on what it captures. Adams said during the event introducing the robot that it will “record video that can be reviewed in case of an emergency or a crime.” It apparently won’t be using facial recognition, though Cahn is concerned that the technology could eventually be incorporated into the machine. Obviously, K5 doesn’t have the capability to respond to actual emergencies in the station and can’t physically or verbally apprehend suspects. The only real-time help it can provide people is to connect them to a live person to report an incident or to ask questions, provided they’re able to press a button on the robot.

Sep 20, 2023

China aims to replicate human brain in bid to dominate global AI

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, governance, government, robotics/AI, surveillance, transhumanism

Aiming to be first in the world to have the most advanced forms of artificial intelligence while also maintaining control over more than a billion people, elite Chinese scientists and their government have turned to something new, and very old, for inspiration—the human brain.

Equipped with surveillance and visual processing capabilities modelled on human vision, the new “brain” will be more effective, less energy hungry, and will “improve governance,” its developers say. “We call it bionic retina computing,” Gao Wen, a leading artificial intelligence researcher, wrote in the paper “City Brain: Challenges and Solution.”

Aug 20, 2023

NASA flew a modified U-2 spy plane into thunderstorms to study super-energetic gamma-rays

Posted by in categories: climatology, surveillance

Researchers flew NASA’s ER-2 aircraft as close to thunderclouds as safely possible and captured ‘the most detailed’ data of gamma-rays and thunderclouds ever recorded.

Aug 4, 2023

Omicron variant resembles other respiratory viruses, posing challenges for syndromic surveillance

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, surveillance

In a recent article published in Scientific Reports, researchers describe the symptom profiles of respiratory viral infections from the Flu Watch Community and the Virus Watch cohort studies to compare the frequency of the range of symptoms experienced during influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), rhinovirus, seasonal coronaviruses (CoVs) infections, and infections from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) wild-type (wt) strain and variants of concerns (VOCs), including Alpha, Delta, Omicron BA1/BA2/BA5.

Study: Symptom profiles of community cases infected by influenza, RSV, rhinovirus, seasonal coronavirus, and SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern. Image Credit: KitjaKitja/

Jul 24, 2023

Two new US bills to protect workers from ‘intrusive’ AI surveillance

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, surveillance

The new regulation also seeks to prevent “robot bosses” that automate hiring decisions.

On Thursday, Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa. introduced two new bills to protect workers from intrusive workplace surveillance and so-called robot bosses, according to a report published by NBC News.

“I think generally everyone around here is keenly focused on providing a strategy to confront what can only be described as an awesome challenge for the country,” Casey told the news outlet about the new regulation he hopes will see the light of day soon.

Jul 24, 2023

Military-grade AI may now be used to spy on American civilians

Posted by in categories: military, robotics/AI, surveillance


“It’s hard to imagine that you are the target of spycraft, but spying on employees is the next frontier of military AI. Surveillance techniques familiar to authoritarian dictatorships have now been repurposed to target American workers,” stated the article.

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