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New military binoculars use brainwaves to spot threats

defense advanced research projects agency cognitive technology threat warning system

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#1 Hum

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 21:32

If we were to pick the hottest area of technology research so far in 2012, it would have to be brainwaves. We've already seen them being used to move robotic exoskeletons for stroke victims and pilot drone aircraft, and their applications just keep evolving. Case in point:

A new battlefield binocular system that will let soldiers determine hostile activity from miles away by using their subconscious thoughts in conjunction with a computer.

Under development by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) since 2007, the Cognitive Technology Threat Warning System (CT2WS) — nicknamed "Luke Skywalker binoculars" after the optics used by the "Star Wars" character — interfaces with a brainwave-reading headset worn by soldiers. A computer scans a 120-degree field of view and sends images of potential threats to the viewfinder for soldiers to review. As they look at the images, the system monitors for the P-300 brainwave, which indicates recognition. Even if the soldiers don't realize it, their brains could be quietly identifying targets, and this system can pick that up.

DARPA says that the CT2WS system has been shown to catch 91% of threats in testing, up substantially from conventional binoculars that only allowed soldiers to spot 47% of threats in the tests. What's more, the agency reports that the system cut false alarms — identification of activity as threats that really weren't — from 810 per hour to five.

Now that the binoculars have proven themselves effective, the technology is being handed over to the Army's Night Vision Lab for further development. At this rate, the digital cameras of 2036 will incorporate the technology for catching that perfect moment without even (consciously) thinking about it.

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#2 Perfect72

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 21:38

Minority Report is becoming a reality... In time... :shiftyninja:

#3 KingCracker

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 21:38

Just when I thought about buying a night vision scope which would be a huge waste of money cause I'd never use it, they come out with this?!?

#4 Glassed Silver

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 21:58

Pffft....


Slim down the "technical look" a bit and this wins! :p ^^*meow*

Ami'rite remixedcat?

Glassed Silver:mac

#5 remixedcat

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 22:04

OMG I saw that a while back ago and I want that.... ^_^

#6 OP Hum

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 22:14

What if there is a rabid, ****ed-off German sheperd ....

#7 exotoxic

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 22:19

Still wont be able to beat al-Qaeda/Taliban.

#8 Perfect72

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 22:50

Still wont be able to beat al-Qaeda/Taliban.


There is never a winner when it comes to war.. :/

#9 Xilo

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 22:54

There is never a winner when it comes to war.. :/

Sure there is. Wars drive technology.

#10 Growled

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 00:00

DARPA says that the CT2WS system has been shown to catch 91% of threats in testing, up substantially from conventional binoculars that only allowed soldiers to spot 47% of threats in the tests.


That's very impressive. All with brainwaves, huh?

#11 I am Reid

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 04:47

That's very impressive. All with brainwaves, huh?


I think what they are saying is that your brain may notice small differences but they are so subtle that you just ignore it, even if your brain did notice, it seems this is able to catch your brain noticing the difference and is able to alert you. Don't sleep on DARPA, its one of the few parts of the government that does lots of cool things. This may seems dumb what they are doing with this project, but the research and effort they put into these types of things get reused in the public sector down the line. They go off and do what may seem like crazy things that a company would be afraid to do in the event they cant produce a product from it, since they don't have products to make, or investors to fear. They are not afraid to go where others wont.