Unmanned Ground Vehicles & Privacy

PrivacyEye spy
I was having dinner with a new acquaintance when an Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) bumped my foot. I looked down and saw a radio-controlled toy.

“Oh, don’t mind that,” said my host.  “That’s just my son playing.”

“He plays too much with that thing,” groused the boy’s father. “What really bothers me is that it has a camera.  I’m don’t like being spied on in my own home.” Read more

AEODRS, Sequestration, and the Wisdom of Lego

UGVs-resized-600AEODRS in the spotlight
All eyes in the Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) community are on the Advanced Explosive Ordnance Disposal Robot System (AEODRS) program. An important RFP for the increment-1(small robot for dismounted operations) is expected soon, and everyone wants a piece of the action if not the whole shebang itself.

Several things make AEODRS especially attractive to Defense vendors.  For one thing, in a time of sequestration and other budget pressures, it is one of the few fully funded Department of Defense (DoD) UGV development programs around.  Secondly, it is arguably the most important.

Read the rest of the article here.

Cars are the new Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV)

I once read a quote from a futurist that many distinctions that we currently take forcar granted will be not be valid in the future. Things that seem as different as day and night will be indistinguishable. Day and night, for example. The proliferation of night vision and other sensor technologies will cause future generations to have radically different views about the level of privacy traditionally offered by the cloak of night. Another distinction that is already blurred is the one between manned and unmanned vehicles.  Read full article here.

Unmanned Systems Markets: What people are saying

Unmanned Systems MarketsLike many of you, I receive numerous ads for market research studies. In order to excite our interest, they often contain a few snippets of facts. I decided to combine all these“snippets” with the goal of forming a coherent vision of the future of unmanned systems markets.

You can’t get there from here

In addition to examining market research reports, I contacted a few thought leaders within the profession. I also posted questions about unmanned markets in the social networks of LinkedIn and Quora. Read more

Interoperability: “ Bandwidth is more precious than gold and platinum”

At the recent Ground Robotics Capability Conference (GRCC), I surveyed a number of vendors about what was on their mind. I read them a list of topics that are frequently covered in OCU Pro newsletters as well as AMREL’s corporate blog.

By far, one topic elicited more interest than any other: interoperability. On one hand, I was pleased. AMREL has been a leader for developing solutions that have the ability to “… to work with or use the parts or equipment of another system” (Merriam-Webster definition). For example, our Flexpedient® Solutions enable kit building of Operator Control Units with common control capabilities.

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Autonomy, Situational Awareness, and the User Interface — Part 2

autonomy 2Part 1 of this series speculated that, contrary to widespread expectations,increased autonomy would make the operation of unmanned systems more difficult, not less. Part 2 explores this hypothesis with David Bruemmer, a well-known authority on autonomy. To read this interview, click here.

Autonomy, Situational Awareness, and the User Interface — Part 1

The US Army has announced plans to increase the autonomy of itsdescribe the image  Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGVs). “We are moving along that spectrum from tele-operating to semiautonomy where you can send a robot from point A to point B without any intervention,” said U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. David Thompson, project manager with the Robotic Systems Joint Program Office (Army building smarter robots). To read the rest of the article, please click here.