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News Briefs

Pushing Robots Toward Autonomy

October 5, 2011

U.S. Army researchers have enhanced the Talon robot with an array of technologies to make the system more autonomous. Upgrades include inertial navigation and Global Positioning System technologies, a 306-degree camera system and laser radar, upgraded power distribution boards, an e-stop system, Ethernet radios, control computers and software for running the system.

First Glimpse of AlphaDog Robot

October 4, 2011

A four-legged robot prototype designed as a pack mule for the U.S. military shows off its skills in a newly released video from Boston Dynamics. The completed robot will carry 400 pounds of payload on 20-mile missions in rough terrain. It operates without a driver, automatically traveling to designated locations using sensors and a Global Positioning System.

AFN Radio Station Signs Off as Part of Iraq Drawdown

September 29, 2011

One more sign that the American military presence in Iraq is winding down: an Armed Forces Network(AFN) radio station is now off the air. After 8 years broadcasting in Baghdad, AFN-Iraq--better known as Freedom Radio--presented its final morning program on September 23 and now relays a satellite feed of AFN Europe.

Microrobots Could Have Mega Impacts

September 12, 2011

Researchers from Argonne National Laboratory have discovered methods to make teensy robots perform an array of tasks on command.

Updating Cyber Laws

September 8, 2011

Cybercrime legislation should be technology agnostic to ensure technological advances do not make the laws obsolete, says James A. Baker, deputy attorney general for the U.S. Justice Department. Baker testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee during a September 7 hearing on updating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to combat emerging cyberthreats.

Transportation Turns to Crowdsourcing

September 6, 2011

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has unveiled the Digital Transportation Exchange, in which citizens, industry, all levels of government, and other stakeholders are invited to design "a thriving online marketplace for the agile creation of transportation solutions."

iPad to the Rescue

August 19, 2011

A science-based software tool for the iPad allows first responders to learn from models of building damage and other conditions that occur after a disaster. Developed by Sandia National Laboratories, the Standard Unified Modeling, Mapping and Integration Toolkit (SUMMIT) enables firefighters, medics and police officers to visualize damaged buildings.

Tactical Merges With Commercial

August 10, 2011

The U.S. Army has linked military radios and chat systems with cell phones, instant messaging and other commercial products that can facilitate communications among the U.S. military and NATO allies. Using Lync 2010, a Microsoft collaboration product, the capability will enable warfighters in command posts or on patrol to know who is online and the best way to reach them-either by computer, radio, chat or phone.

Programs at Work for Wounded Warriors

August 3, 2011
By Rachel Eisenhower

An agreement between the two largest civilian employers in the Defense Department expands hiring programs for disabled veterans.

Defense Department Faces Cyber Strategy Gaps

August 1, 2011
By Rachel Eisenhower

The U.S. Defense Department faces many hurdles in its effort to protect and defend government computer networks. According to an unclassified version of a previously issued classified report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), several cyberspace capability gaps exist.

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