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DARPA Tuesdays

July 6, 2010
  • Plans to develop an airplane/submarine hybrid. Something that will have the capacity to fly low then dip below the water to avoid detection.
  • DARPA has the Urban Challenge which involves created an autonomous vehicle that can maneuver around obstacles in an urban environment and reach a destination. As an add on to this Virginia Tech will be working with DARPA again but this time developing a car a blind person will drive including a high tech vest that will send physical signals to the blind person to allow them to be aware of their environment.
  • Wired points out some of DARPA's new hilariously acronymed projects: BaTMAN (Biochronicity and Temporal Mechanisms Arising in Nature) and of course RoBIN (Robustness of Biologically-Inspired Networks). Their list doesn't include my new favorite: OBTW or literally Oh By The Way. Even the description sounds like something a project engineer would develop (yes I do think they are the lowest lifeform): interactive interface, "online plan monitoring and user-in-the-loop plan adaptation" and "algorithmic techniques for robust course of action analysis." Using the word robust seems borderline corporatey-bullshitty but there's also a good translation here at the Engineering to English Dictionary.
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One Comment leave one →
  1. July 6, 2010 11:10 pm

    Re car from VA Tech: Very cool idea, but I do have my doubts about the project's technological feasibility. What cadre of sensors can accurately detect a kid/dog running in front of a car? Seems like there would be so many false positives and no way to tell what's what. The project acronyms are a riot. I should do a post on all the goofy conference acronyms I've seen lately. Must be an occupational hazard.

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