The National Guard is Training Drones to Think Like Bees
We’re all waiting patiently for the day that artificial intelligence overtakes humanity, thrusting us into a pit of darkness and despair under the (literal) iron fist of our robot overlords. In order to expedite our looming downfall, the National Guard has expanded its drone fleet, and has begun training them to work like a swarm of bees. “In our context," explained Timothy Chung of the Naval Postgraduate School to NPR, "Swarming means a large collection of aerial robots working together to do something meaningful or interesting,” The idea is relatively simple: The National Guard shoots up a drone with some sort of slingshot (seen below), which then settles into a pattern similar to a race track figure eight. Following that one is a literal swarm of 23 other drones, all communicating through wifi and reacting to a set of patterns. RELATED: Could the AeroMobil Be the First Real Flying Car?
While in the air, the drones are programmed to determine which one is the leader, which the other 23 drones will follow at a distance of 164 feet (50 meters) behind. None of these drones are manned, if you haven’t already figured that out, though each one can be remotely controlled by a user on the ground if they decide to start doing their own thing.
Each of these drones cost around $1,000, which makes them more expendable in case of a crash or otherwise. “There are some tasks where you are going to want something small, cheap, and maybe even disposable,” said New America Foundation strategist, P.W. Singer.
While the idea still faces a few issues like government regulations and flight time, the National Guard continues to push forward with the project and hopes to get as many as 50 drones "swarming" in the sky at once. The end is nigh, and I, for one, welcome our future robot overlords.
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