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Pentagon To Send Robot Soldiers to Iraq

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the take-the-meat-popsicle-out-of-the-loop dept.

Robotics 765

conJunk points out this AP story carried by Salon (also covered by various sources linked from Google News) "about the Pentagon's plan to send robot soldiers to Iraq in March or April. The program, Special Weapons Observation Reconnaissance Detection Systems, uses Foster-Miller TALON robots, and is said to be "years ahead of the larger Future Combat System vehicles currently under development by big defense contractors such as Lockheed Martin and General Dynamics Corp." If it's successful, maybe our men and women in uniform will have to team up with the United Auto Workers to fight the robo-threat to their jobs." Note that (whatever other considerations you might have about such deployment), the Rules of Robotics that some readers have linked to don't really apply to remote-controlled drones, which is what these are.

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obligatory. (5, Funny)

dop9388 (650687) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445159)

I, for one, welcome our new...oh never mind... I'll never trust a robot with a gun. It's like trusting a redneck buffoon with the presidency of the United States...oh wait...

Re:obligatory. (3, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445174)

I wonder if they can run to Canada, too?

Re:obligatory. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445189)

Why not? It's been done before. [realchange.org]

Re:obligatory. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445197)

It's like trusting a redneck buffoon with the presidency...

It's far better than trusting a selfish city slicker. At least us commoners have common sense, something sadly lacking in the big cities.

Re:obligatory. (2, Funny)

Jesus 2.0 (701858) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445224)

Yeah, you just go on thinking that. I'm sure it boosts your self-esteem, so that's just super. And it's so cute.

Re:obligatory. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445260)

Bush a "common man" ... he he he. I guess his campaign managers sure pooled a fast one on you.

The clone wars (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445284)

Dun.. dun.. dun.. da. dun. da dun da daaaaa

The Empire will regain control once and for all. I command.. Send out the clones.

What's next? Nasa turns Mimas into the Deathstar? Naaa....it could never happen.

Re:The clone wars (2, Funny)

zephc (225327) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445397)

no no no, it's:

Dun dun dun dun-DA-dun dun-DA-dun;
Dun dun dun DUN-da-dun dun-DA-dun.
DA dun! DA dun da da-da dun. ...
etc.

Re:obligatory. (0, Offtopic)

ortcutt (711694) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445314)

Please, rate up. I'm tired of the Bushies on this site hoarding their mod points so they can rate down anything critical of Bush.

Re:obligatory. (1)

ikkonoishi (674762) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445338)

Yup keep modding this post +1 Funny!

(So as to crush the user's karma.)

Re:obligatory. (1, Flamebait)

Hobadee (787558) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445325)

Wait a minute here, lemme get this straight. We have a redneck buffoon as our commander in chief, which means he's the one controlling the robots with guns!?

Excuse me while I scream in terror and flee to another galaxy.

Re:obligatory. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445390)

I've learned something from all this time I've spent on /. - geeks are just not funny.

Register? (1)

Meor (711208) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445161)

Where the hell's my free pass?

AOL Robots? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445164)

Whose to say that in 2023 that USR Robotics wont sell robots to corporations like AOL? Imagine having AOL Robots knock on your door handing you free AOL CDs... I can imagine now, Jehavoh WItness Robots handing you a copy of AWAKE!! God help us ALL!

Re:AOL Robots? (5, Funny)

Rob Carr (780861) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445185)

Have the JW robots met at the front door by your electric monk. You have an answering machine to talk on the phone for you, a vcr/tivo/recorder to watch TV for you...why not an electric monk to believe things for you?

I miss Douglas Adams.

Re:AOL Robots? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445199)

They wouldn't send robots out of fear that a Baptist would capture and reprogram it to tell gays they're all going to hell.

Gee like soldiers would complain about .. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445166)

.. having to leave Iraq.

Why doesn't George W. just nuke the whole fucked up country?

Re:Gee like soldiers would complain about .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445193)

Yeah. Nuke America. I bet Iraq actually has copyright laws that make more sense than the US ones.

And I for one welcome... (-1, Redundant)

davejenkins (99111) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445170)

And I for one welcome our new robot soldier overlords! /finally! That quote actually fits somewhere...

Re:And I for one welcome... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445250)

finally! That quote actually fits somewhere...

Yeah, I know where I'd like to fit it!

Simpson's quote: (4, Funny)

underpar (792569) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445173)

The wars of the future will not be fought on the battlefield or at sea. They will be fought in space, or possibly on top of a very tall mountain. In either case, most of the actual fighting will be done by small robots. And as you go forth today remember always your duty is clear: To build and maintain those robots. Thank you.

Re:Simpson's quote: (1)

Heem (448667) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445360)

Damn. I was just looking up the quote to make sure I had it right, have it in my clipboard and everything.

oh well.

Re:Simpson's quote: (1)

Fishead (658061) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445420)

Scary.

For the last 4 years I was a technician building and maintaining robots. They didn't have guns, but they did make batteries that could be used in the robot with the gun!!!

Scary stuff. For the technicians I mean. Assembly line robots could be a pain someimes. Hairbrained ideas from engineers to proud to back down and change their designs to make the machines more durrable and easy to build. Robots are truly frightening sometimes ;-)

That's a good thing. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445184)

At least the robots will be smarter than most of the military people I know.

Re:That's a good thing. (1)

lp-habu (734825) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445292)

I would wager that every military person you know does his job better than you do yours -- whatever it might be.

Re:That's a good thing. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445411)

Yeah, and who's your first example, Bush, our Command in Chief? HAHAAHAHAHA!

A Bummer about the Job, though... (1)

kfergos (813170) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445186)

As for teaming up to keep their jobs... there'll always be work for human soldiers, and I'd think they'd be happy to relegate some of their places to better-armored proxies!

Re:A Bummer about the Job, though... (2, Interesting)

Rob Carr (780861) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445208)

I'd think they'd be happy to relegate some of their places to better-armored proxies!

...until some pencil pusher decides it's more cost-effective to have the humans sacrifice themselves to protect the robots....

Re:A Bummer about the Job, though... (2, Insightful)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445274)

Dont forget, American soldiers have (I am almost sure) the most money spent on them by far compared to other country's soldiers.

Robots replacing humans may not be as cost-ineffective as you think.

glad they decided not to call them (1)

darth_linux (778182) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445187)

terminators... but don't worry. they'll be back.

Re:glad they decided not to call them (1)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445242)

Rugged -- TALON robots can take a punch and stay in the fight. One was blown off the roof of a Humvee in Iraq recently while the Humvee was crossing a bridge over a river. TALON flew off the bridge and plunged into the river below. Soldiers later used its operator control unit to drive the robot back out of the river and up onto the bank so they could retrieve it.

Almost as rugged as real terminators.

Ummmm.... (5, Insightful)

Jesus 2.0 (701858) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445190)

Note that (whatever other considerations you might have about such deployment), the Rules of Robotics that some readers have linked to don't really apply to remote-controlled drones, which is what these are.

Uh, more like note that the "Rules of Robotics" don't apply in real life.

Re:Ummmm.... (1)

spac3manspiff (839454) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445309)

If you're talking about real life, then the Geneva convention doesnt apply either.

How long? (1)

br00tus (528477) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445191)

How long until they become sentient and turn on us?

Re:How long? (1)

CrackerJack9 (819843) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445232)

Not too long after they become self-aware. Hopefully these guys will fight for their own independence after seeing they aren't really freeing anyone else and prematurely cut their remote control link...or they'll just reprogram themselves to remote control eachother, creating a hierarchy of terror...brought to you by those who are here to help you.

Re:How long? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445264)

Oh according to my calculations about 24 hours.

Re:How long? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445410)

Aagh! Aiee!

Oh I uh, forgot to carry the one.

T2 Quote (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445192)

"On August 29, 1997 it's gonna feel pretty fuckin real to you to!"

Re:T2 Quote (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445288)

"Anyone not wearin 2 million sunblock is gonna have a real bad day! Get it!?"

Automation (5, Funny)

PixelScuba (686633) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445194)

Somehow I don't think the men and women of the armed services would really put up that much protest if their jobs in Iraq were outsourced by robots.

Re:Automation (1)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445233)

Ok, I need one of these [foster-miller.com]

Now, what options do I want?

Gripper manipulator.
Smoke dropping module.
Grenade dropping module.
Breaching tool.
Gen III night vision camera.
NBC sensors.
UXO/countermine systems/sensors.
Anti-Tank (AT4) launcher.
Light Anti-Tank Weapon (LAW) launcher.
40-mm grenade launcher (M203 barrel).

12-gauge shotgun.
Mounts for remotely controlled weapons including: M240; M249: M16; M82A1 (50-cal).


Oh screw it, I'll take all the options. But... where's the pusher module?

Re:Automation (1)

DarkEdgeX (212110) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445312)

Yeah, really.. better to have a couple of robots blown up by a suicide bomber than men and women serving in the military.

Re:Automation (1)

northcat (827059) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445354)

Correction: outsourced TO robots.

TEH GEY! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445195)

If it's successful, maybe our men and women in uniform will have to team up with the United Auto Workers to fight the robo-threat to their jobs.

Doubtful. Most soldiers actually have to do real work. Most AUTO WORKERS ARE TEH GEY!

I can see it now (5, Funny)

miyako (632510) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445201)

Just wait, they'll control these using a 1337 brigade of FPS players, then some asshat will TK our entire military presence. Shortly thereafter whatever enemy we happen to be fighting at the time will send us the gift of nukes with "pwned" spray painted on the side.

Re:I can see it now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445262)

Yeah, well, just keep the flash grenades out of the robots arsenal, and everything should be fine. Also, don't enable the flashgrens during buy time at spawn.

Re:I can see it now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445364)

But it won't change anything, everyone will still complain that the U.S. Army consists of nothing but campers.

The 3 rules of robotics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445203)

Note that (whatever other considerations you might have about such deployment), the Rules of Robotics that some readers have linked to don't really apply to remote-controlled drones, which is what these are


Those rules also don't apply because they are from _fictional_ stories. This is real life, anything goes.

Awww Yeah (0, Troll)

supasam (658359) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445204)

The terminator is going to show those damn towelheads. Send em some good old fashioned american steel techno killers and we'll see what's what. Heartless robot killers are just the thing for killing the "enemy combatants!"

The Iraqis, for one.... (5, Funny)

iamatlas (597477) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445210)

I do not think that the Iraqis will welcome their new robotic overlords. Or their guns. Probably not the bullets either. In fact, I think they may get kind of pissed...

Re:The Iraqis, for one.... (1)

grammar fascist (239789) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445243)

In fact, I think they may get kind of pissed...

Have you got some reason for thinking so? Or are you trusting the groupthink around here to validate your point of view for you?

Maybe we should have sent 100,000 human shields instead? That would have worked.

Re:The Iraqis, for one.... (2, Insightful)

grammar fascist (239789) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445278)

Replying to grandparent:

Oh, hang on. You mean the terrorist so-called "insurgents?" Funny. That's not the first thing that comes to mind when I think "Iraqis." That you associate all "Iraqis" with a minority of violent jerks who want to destroy any chance the country has of developing democracy says something rather disturbing about you.

Well thats a relief. (1)

reality-bytes (119275) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445350)


I was beginning to think I was the only one who saw the Iraqi people in general as one of the most unfortunate peoples of the 21st century.

Re:The Iraqis, for one.... (3, Insightful)

yasth (203461) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445418)

Baka, Striking military targets is not terrorist action. To say it is, is to diminish the horror of attacks upon civilians. As a group they are insurgents, some (maybe many) are war criminals (striking from mosques and the like), some are terrorists (willfully striking civilian targets), but insurgents helpfully contains everything. So that is why it is used.

As for the Iraqis not liking this, well it is probably true, even if the police were hunting a band of criminals with robots in my home town, well robots covering me with automatic weapons would not be the most pleasant situation. That doesn't mean I woduld want them to stop, but it would be bloody freaky.

As for the tactics effectiveness, if it is used with restraint (i.e. mostly on those who are hostile, and not just all the time) then it could work really well, they would hate it, and that is a good thing. Sometimes you have to scare people, and riskless killing from heartless robots would probably break morale very quickly.

The risk would of course if they were used as the face that most iraqis saw of the Coalition, hard to trust somebody who is aiming a weapon at you from a block away. Would you try to help someone who always apears as a robot? Would you risk your life to support them?

There are also fairly serious abuse concerns, I mean if a bunch of guys shoot up someone, eyewitnesses might be able to finger them, but an anonymous robot? It is the perfect tool to frag a comander that you don't like. Or to settle scores. Though that is more novel stuff, give it time, and someone will probably try it.

Re:The Iraqis, for one.... (1)

YU Nicks NE Way (129084) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445294)

In fact, I think they may get kind of pissed...
Have you got some reason for thinking so?

After all, don't happy people kill themselves in suicide car bombs all the time? Why would anyone think they'd be pissed?

Re:The Iraqis, for one.... (1)

northcat (827059) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445373)

And do you think they welcomed their old, human overlords? Or their guns? Or bullets? Do you think they aren't already pissed?

TALON online store? (5, Funny)

InterStellaArtois (808931) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445213)

I have to admit, when I looked at the site detailing these robots, I did look for a 'Order', or 'View your Shopping Cart' link ...

Equipped with breaching tool, light anti-tank weapon launcher, 12-gauge shotgun and 40mm grenade launcher I must admit - for a moment I reflexively considered my available credit.

fight fair? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445214)

I know, lives are on the line, and America wants to reduce casualties, but this brings back images of european armies mowing down Zulu warriors. At some point, it becomes just too easy. Now give those robots some vulnerabilities and we can all fight over who can control the robots like civilized people.

Nice Acronym... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445216)

They are going to eb fighting with SWORDS :)

Re:Nice Acronym... (1)

Outatime (108039) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445395)

That's "S-Words," Mr. Connery. S-words.

Mercenary For Hire (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445225)

I'd like to see one of those things compete on BattleBots.

Hot Blonde Chicks (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445227)

Check this out [groovybooty.com]

Its just a matter of time... (1)

Mastadex (576985) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445231)

...before those robots start looking, acting, and drinking like bender.

Anyone Else Remember Ogre? (1)

Rob Carr (780861) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445245)

Somehow, this has me thinking of the old Steve Jackson game "Ogre [sjgames.com] ". I've still got a copy of "Ogre", "GEV", and at least one expansion pack.

The basic McGuffin is you've got one huge mother of a cybernetic tank with armor plating that shoots micronukes and it goes up against an entire army - and the battle's a fair fight!

Then again, with the current administration, perhaps I should be playing "Rivets" instead. "Rivets" were the third-world's answer to the superpower Ogres. The robots were rather dain-bramaged and could only shoot at what they were programmed to shoot at. It's a funny game, in a sick sort of way.

Maybe I'll play the "Ogre vs. Rivets" variant.

So it's true (1)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445249)

GW really does lead an army of the undead!

"Robots with Shotguns?" (1)

cocoacow (838794) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445254)

Heh.. yeah... Isn't this what they made them there video games fur in the first place?

woah, flash bot to the time when I watched santa and the rolling red tomatos for the first time...

Democracy. (2, Insightful)

headkase (533448) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445257)

Democratic societies seem to abhor seeing their sons and daughters killed in war. Just think about a hundred years from now, the outcry that would be raised when a rear base of drone operators had actually been killed. Robot war machines let democracies exersize their will without actually having to dirty yourself with the experience of war.
Whether or not thats a good thing, I don't know.

Re:Democracy. (4, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445392)

Somehow, I have this feeling that anything which reduces the amount of outrage at a war is a bad thing. Why? Cause wars are bad things. Why? Cause killing people is a bad thing. Why? Well, I don't think anyone knows the answer to that. It's just a given.

Are they controlled by SkyNet (5, Funny)

mslinux (570958) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445258)

Good thing old Arnold is still around ;)

Not a cliche post (0, Flamebait)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445261)

In all reality, no jokes, is this really the beginning of a real-world Skynet? What happens when they put hundreds of these things in control of a supercomputer? Not that it will become intellegent, but what if it sends an error and they all start turning 360 degrees around with their miniguns?

Capitalism (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445266)

Thanks capitalism for all the barbarism.

They might find bin laden.. (1, Funny)

cyberfunk2 (656339) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445267)

But, will they find Sarah Conner ?

I'll Be Back (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445271)

Welcome to SkyNet. I hear they will be deploying T1's to Iraq. Prepare for the inevitable.

--
Get a Free Mac Mini! See Website for Details. [slashdot.us]

Make Money Fast! (1)

MavEtJu (241979) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445272)

1. Start selling the Daleks Survival Guide [amazon.com]
2. Profit!

Johnny 5 (3, Funny)

digitalgimpus (468277) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445277)

Anyone else think this image [yimg.com] of the new robot/soldier looks like Johnny 5 [johnny-five.com] ?

In the movie Johnny 5 had Apple hardware... does this real one perhaps have a G5?

Is it running Darwin (insert darwinism joke here)?

It could broadcast what it's eyes/camera's see via a QuickTime Stream. It's voice can be done using text to speach. It can even sing (better than the movie) thanks to iTunes.

Oh boy. I bet I'm right!

Re:Johnny 5 (0)

ortcutt (711694) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445340)

It's only a matter of time until it decides it doesn't want to kill.

robot warriors / digital warriors (1)

dj42 (765300) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445282)

I don't think robots are the future of war. Maybe for a bit, when people can be killed or disabled by certain programmed criteria. But for the most part, economies are growing in information importance. Information because money, especially the interpretation of information applied. Therein lies a technological infrastructure that can be manipulated and attacked. It is that infrastructure which will become almost as important, if not equally important or more important than land once more money and emphasis is placed on that economic driving force than is on land and resources. A messy world we live in.

Already Robots, Just Not Meat Robots (2, Interesting)

Master Bait (115103) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445290)

And isn't that the reality of military discipline? Soldiers are meat, fodder, expendable. I suppose having machines will lower the bar for ethics and morality when it comes to how much we care about the human beings which we are told are our enemies.

Re:Already Robots, Just Not Meat Robots (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445351)

Isn't it already pretty low? Women and children dead. Civilian prisoners, beaten and humiliated. No-one much cares when bombs are dropping on them, when they are shot. As long as news footage isn't shown, no one will bat an eyelid, the ones that do will be dead.

If anything the list of excuses will grow.

I worked at Foster-Miller for a while... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445295)

...and I saw a TALON combat robot roaming the halls.

Fortunately for my sake, the thing was not armed.

Great for scenarios like Fallujah (1)

PornMaster (749461) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445299)

When we were fighting the bad guys hiding out in the cemetary, would have been nice to send in robots who could negotiate between headstones and then get around and shoot or otherwise incapacitate the evildoers, rather than waiting for a head to pop out from behind a stone or go in with a person and risk getting shot.

Korean Kids (1)

RonXX (788974) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445302)

The korean kids are going to pwn our faces off. I wonder how much the US will try to pay team 3D to control them? Also, will team 3D be able to beat the korean's?

No a real threat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445305)

I'm fairly familiar with these robots. This is far from a substitute for a soldier. The robot is fairly expensive and flimsy. Everything on it is a weak point. The upkeep is high, its prone to mechanical and communication failure. You constantly have to hold its hand to get it to do anything. Its bulky (hardly man-portable as advertised, as it takes 4 men to carry the components that make up a combat model, not to mention it takes half a day to assemble it.) Pretty hard to assemble a robot, setup and calibrate communications, test functionality, all in a battlefield condition, when you can just grab a gun and shoot the mother fuckers yourself.

When no one will be killed in a war (2, Interesting)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445313)

What you have to remember is that once these fighting robots advance enough, huamns will not be involved in wars anymore. The WHOLE war effort will be producing better AI and better materials. Wars will not be won by the number of 18 year olds your country has, but by the infrastructure and the amount of metal deposits.

Soon it will be 1984, a never ending war. All metal will be reclaimed from the battlefield and all parts will be modular, meaning these wars could go on forever. It will be the perfect war, controlling your population but with no outcry over bloodshed. Then we get into androids with real skin, and all rights are taken away in the name of "making sure your neighbor isn't a droid". May god have pitty on humanity's future, for it is bleak.

Re:When no one will be killed in a war (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445422)

Yeah, and it is hard to enforce Geneva Convention on a robot.

I mean, send in a company of robots to wipe out a village. Everyone killed? "Oh, it was a computer malfunction."

So let me get this straight... (4, Funny)

bechthros (714240) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445319)

"The TALON robot can be reconfigured in the field by operators using simple pin mounted components and plug-and-play subsystems."

Just so I understand this...

We're giving automatic weapons, and license to kill, to remote-controlled robots that are not only hackable and abusable but that use PLUG'N'PLAY?!?!

I can see the future general now... "Bring me Bill Gates!" [imdb.com]

The other side already has robotic killers (1)

michaeldot (751590) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445333)

Anyone who could strap themselves with explosives, walk into a crowded area filled with civilian men, women and children and blow everyone into small bloody fragments, cannot have any more intelligence than the stupidest machine it's possible to manufacture.

I'm afraid civilization is playing catchup to terrorists when it comes to the dumb robot category.

Re:The other side already has robotic killers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445394)

As opposed to straping a bomb on to a plane and dropping it on crowded areas filled with civilian men, women and children and blow everyone into small bloody fragments?

Look behind you Batman (3, Insightful)

UlfGabe (846629) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445359)

Seriously, unless these bots have 360 degree vision, some sort of self destruct mode you are going to quickly see these bots, and their guns being put into the other sides hands.

Robots have no loyalty, they obey the RC.

How soon till we have robowarrior-takedowns.

EXAMPLE:

Some dude walks up behind this bot and using Cloak, drill, and Tinfoil! covers up the bots recieving antenna and cameras. Takes the 200K POS apart and sells the gun(whats the going rate on the armament of these things, anyone?)

Brainwash complete!

I think people are the best weapon, and the cheapest.

Dispatch the robots! (2, Funny)

indy (23876) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445361)

This way the U.S. will finally win the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people. Go, America!

Mod Submission -1 Too Many Links (1)

shadowbearer (554144) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445372)

to read before discussion is archived. :)

Cheers,
SB

Anybody remember the Viet Cong? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11445374)

The Viet Cong beat the most powerful, strongest nation that has ever existed. They did it with things like dung covered stakes in pits. Totally low tech.

High tech works only if the enemy is stupid enough to stand in one place and fight you face to face. A million of these robots won't win the war in Iraq. Sorry Uncle Sam but if you want peace on your terms, you're going to have to kill everyone else on the face of the planet. If you are willing to commit genocide then these robots will be a great help. Otherwise; well, good luck.

sniperbots (1)

SlashDotIDOne (223777) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445381)

I'd really love to see some quality sniperbots someday though. I can only imagine the military advantages of being able to airdrop robotic snipers in, or preposition them, and then have them controlled via relay from a UAV or other aircraft flying nearby. A few snipers firing simultaneously, shorter than the average human, and requiring no food would be absolutely awesome.

Of course I'm no sniper, I'm just imagining here, and it'd suck to be the marine scout-sniper that had to find a new job or sit in a shipping container somewhere fighting a war on a videoscreen.

If they start making serious advances in batteries and portable, storable energy, this could start being a much more feasable way to fight wars or dangerous missions. Not to mention the cost ($200,000 or so) is less than the standard $250,000 life insurance most soldiers have these days. Though I'm sure 50 years from now there'll be robots' rights protests, and people spilling robot blood on cars and carrying something similar to a coffin through the streets in protest.

Re:sniperbots (1)

man_ls (248470) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445407)

a-la...what was that movie, where the guy had the robotic gun and was going to try to kill the First Lady at a public engagement?

He bought the gun off the Internet, had the body fabricated from carbon fiber, took it for testing, killed the guy who made it with his own weapon.

It pulled to the right a little bit, so when he was going to shoot his apple he was holding, he shot his arm off instead.

Was an amazing movie, but I forget what it was called.

My concern would be... (1)

Audacious (611811) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445388)

My concern would be that one of three things happen:

1. Iraqi hackers hack a robot and use that information to turn all of the robots against our own people.

2. The Iraqi's come up with a simple but effective EMP which causes all of the robots to go dormant.

3. Another sand storm hits Iraq, gunks up all of the robot's gears, and we have wasted millions of dollars on useless military gear which is now only good for the junk heap.

They will never replace REAL american soldiers (2, Insightful)

POLAX (690605) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445401)

I'm not sure if these robots can replace real AMERICAN soldiers...I mean have they been properly programmed to fire at allies as much as at enemies?

robotic laws are for wimps (2, Funny)

0xdeaddead (797696) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445416)

Did the terminaotr ever stop and ponder these precious 'laws'? Did skynet think Hmm maybe not? Just like those fictional events, its all fiction. In the real world people get killed. We've just gotten pretty good at doing it. :|

Its a mistake (1)

jbplou (732414) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445423)

History from a time long ago shows us that clone troopers can easily defeat robots.

It's Pretty Pathetic When.... (2, Interesting)

Homebrewed (154837) | more than 9 years ago | (#11445427)

Battles are determined by folks who don't have the cojones to actually fight. Modern warfare seems to have become the occupation of the true coward....
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