In a world that’s becoming increasingly drone friendly, there are some serious safety considerations that shouldn’t be ignored. Specifically, government and military officials have cautioned that drones might soon be outfitted with explosives or chemical weapons and flown into either public or sensitive spaces.
With that in mind, Boeing recently developed a portable laser cannon that can eviscerate unwanted and pesky drones mid-flight. In the future, these types of lasers might be installed in all sorts of locations, including airports and sensitive military installations.
Always on the lookout for new and creative ways to gather information in hard to reach locations, the United States Naval Research Laboratory (USNRL) has quietly been developing a drone that can not only fly through the air, but also swim underwater.
Called “Flimmer”, the device has been under development for about two years, with research being spearheaded by Dan Edwards who works in the Vehicle Research and Tactical Electronic Warfare section within the USNRL. The Vehicle Research Section, according to the Navy, is “dedicated to advancing the state-of-the-art in unmanned systems technology.”
And Flimmer, if anything, seems to fit that bill.
Now the way Flimmer works is seemingly simple enough to belie its true complexity. The device takes off like any other airborne drone and flies off into the distance. Next, the drone splashes down at a pre-determined location, submerges itself under water where it then begins to swim to a target location. By air, Flimmer can reach speeds of 57 MPH. In the water, Flimmer travels at about 11 MPH.
Just a few weeks ago we highlighted an incredible video showcasing a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner taking off at what’s almost a 90 degree angle. But extreme and harrowing takeoffs get pushed to an entirely new level when we’re talking about military grade fighter jets. Built for speed and for air to air combat, the average fighter jet can perform feats that are absolutely mesmerizing and might even dissuade you from air travel for a few weeks.
Earlier this month we highlighted what it looks like from within a cockpit when an F-16 fighter jet takes off at breakneck speed. And now we have even more crazy and stress-inducing footage to show you.
With a defense budget that’s higher than China, Russia, France, and the UK combined, the United States has, without question, the most advanced military force on the planet.
Throughout history, the U.S. has always placed a premium on military superiority, though that’s not to say that there haven’t been some out and out military setbacks over the years.
If you take a look at a list of the fastest airplanes to ever grace the skies, many of them, for whatever reason, were primarily active in the 1960s. That may change soon enough.
Military.com is reporting that the U.S. Air Force is looking to partner up and develop a hypersonic jet capable of traveling at five times the speed of sound, otherwise known as Mach 5. By way of contrast, the famed Concorde aircraft traveled at Mach 2.04.
Windows XP has long been an OS Microsoft begrudgingly kept alive far longer than it could have ever imagined. Initially released in 2001, official support for Windows XP persisted all the way through April 2014. At the time, Microsoft noted that after 13 years of support, it was time for the company to look forward, unencumbered by outdated software.
Remember the selfie-taking terrorist that got his headquarters blown up by the Air Force last week in a swift attack? It turns out there are even more outlandish stories out there, with new reports revealing that at least one suicide bomber in Sargodha, Pakistan, may have died after accidentally triggering a suicide vest during an argument with a second individual who was also potentially a suicide bomber. More →
Apparently, looks can kill. In a very real story that we assure you did not originate from The Onion, a terrorist from ISIS recently took a selfie of himself and posted it online.
Shortly thereafter, U.S. Intelligence, which heavily monitors social media accounts from ISIS members and supporters, managed to pinpoint an ISIS headquarters building in Syria by using the selfie photo as a reference point.
The United States is challenging every entrepreneur, engineer, developer and inventor to create the first military robot. The individual or team that creates a humanoid robot capable of walking on two legs and performing various tasks — driving vehicles and using tools — will be awarded $2 million by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The humanoid army isn’t intended for the battlefield, however; the military is interested in using robots for disaster-response scenarios in which robots will be able to assist service members in high-risk situations. “Robots undoubtedly capture the imagination, but that alone does not justify an investment in robotics,” said DARPA Acting Director, Kaigham J. Gabriel. “For robots to be useful to DoD they need to offer gains in either physical protection or productivity. The most successful and useful robots would do both via natural interaction with humans in shared environments.” The Robotics Challenge will begin in October 2012 and run through December 2014. Read on for DARPA’s press release. More →
Singapore-based wireless carrier M1 began offering camera-free iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S handsets on Friday. The Singaporean government does not allow its soldiers to carry phones equipped with cameras, but requires that all men serve two years in the military. M1 no doubt wanted to address those potential customers who wanted iPhones but could not carry one with a camera. The camera-free iPhone 4 starts at $449 while the high-end iPhone 4S is priced at $974. According to CNET Asia, Singtel and StarHub are also planning to offer camera-less iPhones, although it’s unclear when the device will be launched on those carriers. It is unclear if or when camera-free versions of the iPhone will become available outside Singapore. More →
Our friendly FedEx man was kind enough to deliver us the soon-to-be-released Casio G’zOne Commando from Verizon Wireless. Unlike most full-touchscreen smartphones, this Android 2.2.1 device is designed to be abused. The Commando meets military standards 810G for immersion, rain, and shock, dust resistance, vibration, salt fog, humidity, solar radiation, altitude, along with low and high temperature storage. The handset, which is not the lightest full-touchscreen we’ve handled — but certainly not the heaviest at 5.4-ounces— sports a ruggedized composite case which protects a 5 megapixel auto-focus camera with flash, 1460mAh battery, 512MB RAM, 3.6-inch WVGA touchscreen display, and a host of other assets. Want to know what our first impressions are? Good. Have a look at the gallery below and hit the jump to read on.More →
French digital journalism monitor OWNI published an interview Monday with former right-hand man to Julian Assange, Daniel Domscheit-Berg. Domscheit-Berg shot from anonymity to the spotlight recently when he announced that he was leaving WikiLeaks and launching a new project called OpenLeaks. “In these last months, the organization has not been open any more, it lost its open-source promise,” Domscheit-Berg said of WikiLeaks. He did not elaborate, but OpenLeaks will apparently be focused on achieving WikiLeaks’ initial vision as Domscheit-Berg saw it. The OpenLeaks website is now live (www.openleaks.org), though no content has been published at this point. It will initially be a vehicle for short essays that will serve as a test for the site “without pressure.” This will be the case through early 2011, and then the site will turn to “bigger media.” OpenLeaks is currently a 10-man operation but those numbers will likely rise with haste; Domscheit-Berg said the team is “drowning in applications” from people who want to join the crusade. More →