Artificial Intelligence (AI) in warfare has been growing rapidly. Several weapons now use integrated AI software to slowly reduce the number of soldiers in direct mortal peril. These weapon systems can target and attack anyone without human intervention. But, the growth of this technology is raising a few eyebrows. Several prominent scientists have already questioned the future of AI machinery simply because of the unpredictability.
Russian president Vladimir Putin wanted world leaders to have regulations in store for superhuman soldiers in the future in case they turn in to mass killers who feel no pain or fear, The Express reported Monday. The statement came after he warned attendees of the "World Festival of Youth and Students" Saturday. Genetically-modified superhuman soldiers are a possible danger, because scientists are close to breaking the genetic code. "He can be a genius mathematician, a brilliant musician or a soldier, a man who can fight without fear, compassion, regret or pain," Putin said in his speech for the festival's closing ceremony, according to Express. "What I have just described might be worse than a nuclear bomb," Putin proclaimed, in front of the 20,000 young women and men attending the festival, which was held in the Olympic Park in Sochi.
The Falcon 9 used for the mission launched 10 Iridium satellites from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The launch got 10 satellites into orbit, SpaceX is contracted to launch 75 of these communication satellites for Iridium and with Monday's launch has successfully put 30 into orbit. After the launch and deployment of the satellites the first stage of the rocket then entered Earth's atmosphere again and landed upright on the drone ship "Just Read The Instructions." The third launch of a bath of 10 Iridium satellites took place at Vandenberg Air Force base in California.
Sally Jones, a former punk rocker from Kent, United Kingdom, who gained notoriety as "Mrs Terror" after joining the Islamic State group (also called ISIS), was reportedly killed in a United States drone strike along with her 12-year old son Jojo in Syria as she tried to escape Raqqa, the Sun reported. Though Whitehall sources confirmed reports that Jones was killed, according to the Guardian, the Pentagon was unable to confirm the news. Jones collected another nickname -- White Widow --after Hussain was killed by a U.S. army drone in IS group capital of Raqqa in 2015. Metro reported that in a Twitter post after Hussain's death, Jones claimed she was "proud my husband was killed by the biggest enemy of Allah, may Allah be pleased with him."
North Korea had plans to direct a cyber attack against power grids in the United States and successfully launched an attack directed at South Korea's Ministry of Defense, NBC News reported. While the campaign may have failed, the attempts of North Korean hackers to target utility companies presents a growing risk for American companies that are responsible for keeping the lights on for millions of homes across the country. Many power grids operate on a network separate from the public internet, insulating the systems that control the grid from attackers. North Korean hackers were able to successfully infiltrate South Korea's defense ministry and stole a large collection of military documents that purport to detail wartime contingency plans developed by South Korea and the U.S. A total of 235 gigabytes of military documents were reported to be stolen from South Korea's Defense Integrated Data Centre in a breach that took place in September 2016, and 80 percent of those stolen files have yet to be identified.
Elon Musk's company SpaceX is planning two rocket launches and recoveries both happening in a span of just 48 hours. The two launches will occur on different coasts of the country from one another, the first at Kennedy Space Center in Florida and the second from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The second launch of the 48-hour period is scheduled for 8:37 a.m. EDT Monday from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. This is the third launch SpaceX will conduct for Iridium, the company has contracted SpaceX to launch 75 communications satellites for them.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning is making its way into more security products, helping organizations and individuals automate certain tasks required to keep their services and information safe. Kashyap, the senior vice president and chief product officer at Cylance--a cybersecurity firm known for its use of AI--doesn't view AI and machine learning as a replacement for human workers but rather as a supplemental service that can enable those workers to do their job more efficiently. He said there were now "billions of pieces of malware" in the wild, and "well thought-out cyber campaigns" being carried out on the regular, with targeted threats directed at individuals and organizations that require a more efficient way to check the validity of code and defend against attacks. With a widening gap between the number of security professionals needed compared to the number available--a shortage of more than 1.5 million is expected by 2020--Kashyap determined the issue no longer just required a human scale solution; it needed a computing solution.
However, going by the official video, it doesn't seem to be equipped for flying long distances. Unlike diesel or petrol vehicles, battery-powered flying vehicles are equipped to fly less than an hour, also the thin frame doesn't give room to add much payload to the vehicle and also limits the number of rotors on the vehicle. But the concept can be scaled up and made capable of flying long distances and carrying bigger payloads. But it is not just the Russian military, the U.S. military is also working on a similar concept with Malloy Aeronautics, but that concept currently has a robot riding the hoverbike.
The Navy is starting to use repurposed Xbox 360 controllers to control the periscopes on some of its submarines, according to The Virginian-Pilot. In the past, many Virginia-class submarines used mast-mounted cameras to see above the water and they required helicopter-like joysticks that required extensive training and were costly to use. Lockheed Martin said sailors were able to pick up the controller scheme within minutes and for the Navy, the shorter training time is a secondary benefit. Plus, Xbox 360 controllers, which run around $30, cost way less than a military grade joystick for a submarine.
That said, the government has recently begun to act on the issue, making a start with the security guidelines for smart homes. While it does make life easy, the fact remains that AI is based on algorithms and if a base algorithm is tampered with, AI can also be reprogrammed. Unless and until these risks are properly assessed and preventive measures to plug vulnerabilities are put in place, AI adoption needs to be closely monitored. Strict security guidelines need to be put in place by governments, while tech companies need address the issue more seriously, and start issuing regular updates to plug vulnerabilities the way they currently do for smartphones.