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Archive for the ‘surveillance’ category

Jul 1, 2020

China is Researching Quantum Radars to Track and Kill Submarines

Posted by in categories: quantum physics, surveillance

China is even developing a satellite-based laser surveillance system aimed at detecting vessels submerged as deep as five hundred meters.

By Sebastien Roblin

Here’s What You Need To Remember: Time will tell which, if any, of these technologies can be developed into practical operational systems.

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Jul 1, 2020

A scheme to enhance how swarm robots search for multiple targets

Posted by in categories: particle physics, robotics/AI, surveillance, transportation

Over the past decade or so, researchers have been trying to develop techniques that could enable effective collaborative strategies among teams of robots. One of the tasks that teams of robots could complete better than individual robots is simultaneously searching for several targets or objects in their surrounding environment.

The ability of a team of robots to collectively seek and identify numerous targets at once could be useful for a wide range of applications. For instance, it could aid surveillance applications and help to better track individuals or vehicles.

Researchers at Tongji University and University of Stuttgart have recently devised a systematic framework for enabling more effective multiple target search in swarm robots. This framework, presented in a paper published in IEEE Access, is based on the use of a mechanical particle swarm optimization method and artificial potential fields.

Jun 27, 2020

AI gatekeepers are taking baby steps toward raising ethical standards

Posted by in categories: ethics, robotics/AI, surveillance

For years, Brent Hecht, an associate professor at Northwestern University who studies AI ethics, felt like a voice crying in the wilderness. When he entered the field in 2008, “I recall just agonizing about how to get people to understand and be interested and get a sense of how powerful some of the risks [of AI research] could be,” he says.

To be sure, Hecht wasn’t—and isn’t—the only academic studying the societal impacts of AI. But the group is small. “In terms of responsible AI, it is a sideshow for most institutions,” Hecht says. But in the past few years, that has begun to change. The urgency of AI’s ethical reckoning has only increased since Minneapolis police killed George Floyd, shining a light on AI’s role in discriminatory police surveillance.

This year, for the first time, major AI conferences—the gatekeepers for publishing research—are forcing computer scientists to think about those consequences.

Jun 27, 2020

Congress introduces bill that bans facial recognition use

Posted by in categories: government, habitats, law enforcement, privacy, robotics/AI, surveillance

“Facial recognition is a uniquely dangerous form of surveillance. This is not just some Orwellian technology of the future — it’s being used by law enforcement agencies across the country right now, and doing harm to communities right now,” Fight for the Future deputy director Evan Greer said in a statement shared with VentureBeat and posted online.


Members of the United States Congress introduced a bill today, The Facial Recognition and Biometric Technology Moratorium Act of 2020, that would prohibit the use of U.S. federal funds to acquire facial recognition systems or “any biometric surveillance system” use by federal government officials. It would also withhold federal funding through the Byrne grant program for state and local governments that use the technology.

The bill is sponsored by Senators Ed Markey (D-MA) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) as well as Representatives Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Pramila Jayapal (D-WA). Pressley previously introduced a bill prohibiting use of facial recognition in public housing, while Merkley introduced a facial recognition moratorium bill in February with Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ).

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Jun 20, 2020

China’s Top-Secret Laser Project

Posted by in categories: military, surveillance

In 2018, China launched a secret project with the goal of eradicating U.S. submarines.

It’s called Project Guanlan, which means “Watching the Big Waves,” and it’s a space-based laser weapon.

If you’re a regular reader, then this won’t come as a surprise to you.

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Jun 9, 2020

IBM will no longer offer, develop, or research facial recognition technology

Posted by in categories: government, law enforcement, robotics/AI, surveillance

IBM will no longer offer general purpose facial recognition or analysis software, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna said in a letter to Congress today. The company will also no longer develop or research the technology, IBM tells The Verge. Krishna addressed the letter to Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Reps. Karen Bass (D-CA), Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), and Jerrold Nadler (D-NY).

“IBM firmly opposes and will not condone uses of any [facial recognition] technology, including facial recognition technology offered by other vendors, for mass surveillance, racial profiling, violations of basic human rights and freedoms, or any purpose which is not consistent with our values and Principles of Trust and Transparency,” Krishna said in the letter. “We believe now is the time to begin a national dialogue on whether and how facial recognition technology should be employed by domestic law enforcement agencies.”

Jun 4, 2020

Funded By Kevin Durant, Founded By Ex-Google Engineers: Meet The Drone Startup Scoring Millions In Government Surveillance Contracts

Posted by in categories: drones, government, surveillance

Famous basketball player Kevin Durant co-funded $200 million-valued Skydio, which has quietly been getting millions in federal government surveillance money, whilst spending thousands on lobbying senators and the president’s office.

May 28, 2020

Q&A: Why Surveillance Technology Alone Cannot Save Us from the Pandemic

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, law, surveillance

A look at how governments around the world are using surveillance technology during this pandemic.


States all over the world have begun to embrace surveillance technology as a weapon against the COVID-19 pandemic. More than ever, it is crucial that civil society groups monitor these decisions and defend individual rights as well as the rule of law.

May 26, 2020

Quake in Terror at this Heavily Militarized Cybertruck

Posted by in categories: drones, surveillance

Sneaky Cybertruck

According to the video, the vehicle could be especially well suited for recon or scouting missions, thanks to its quiet electric drivetrain. A surveillance drone could be launched from the truck bed as well.

May 23, 2020

CROWS Remote Machine Gun System In Action

Posted by in categories: military, surveillance

U.S. Military Soldiers conduct training on the Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station (CROWS).

CROWS is a stabilized mount that contains a sensor suite and fire control software, allowing on-the-move target acquisition and first-burst target engagement. CROWS also features programmable target reference points for multiple locations, programmable sector surveillance scanning, automatic target ballistic lead, automatic target tracking, and programmable no-fire zones.

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