Artificial intelligence technology tested during the Army’s Project Convergence exercise largely met expectations and will help transform the way the Army fights in the future, officials say.
The United States and its great power rivals are taking different paths in their pursuit of artificial intelligence (AI), but all three are devoting significant resources to what they believe will be a game changer. Their uses of AI also are likely to be different, as their approach to ethics varies according to each nation’s principles.
A breakout session panel provided a global view on the race for AI during the third and final day of the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence and National Security Summit being held online September 16-18. Panelists assessed the differences in AI research and applications among Russia, China and the United States.
Data in various forms supports a wide range of national security missions, and whichever country is best able to use that data will have a distinct advantage, according to intelligence agency experts speaking at the virtual 2020 Intelligence and National Security Summit.
The FBI’s pilot iris recognition program initiated in 2013 will likely be fully operational this fall, possibly by October 1. The agency also is developing tools to detect fingerprints that have been deliberately mutilated and a scanner large enough to get a print of the entire palm along with all five fingerprints.
Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was awarded a $70,000,000 cost-no-fee contract to research and develop a new translational research methodology that leverages autonomy and artificial intelligence to minimize time spent on low-impact, high-time activities. Bids were solicited via the internet with 999 received. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of September 3, 2025. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity (W911QX-20-D-0008).
Geospark Analytics Inc.,* Herndon, Virginia, has been awarded a $95,000,000 firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract with a five year ordering period for the Phase Three commercialization of their Small Business Innovation Research Phase One technology of Hyperion Artificial Intelligence. The enterprise-level contract provides near real time situational awareness capabilities to the entire U.S. federal government, enabling users to make better decisions faster. This is accomplished by identifying and forecasting emerging events on a global scale to mitigate risk, recognize threats, greatly enhance indications and warnings and provide predictive analytics capabilities.
To fully counter the threats posed by adversaries, the Department of Defense needs to harness autonomous and robotic systems, artificial intelligence and machine learning. The nation’s military is falling short of pursuing those systems on the large scale necessary, an expert says. Moreover, the department needs to holistically consider the purpose for which it is harnessing artificial intelligence, or AI, across the services, says Robert Work, the former 32nd deputy secretary of defense.
Over the last year and a half, the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Future Capabilities and Innovation Office, or FCI, has iteratively developed a new strategy to drive innovation and collaboration to the agency. The DIA, as the agency is known, is looking to harness artificial intelligence, machine learning, natural language processing, counterintelligence tools and other solutions to identify and assess cyber behaviors, among other capabilities. The FCI also must be able to measure the impacts of any solutions.
Deloitte Consulting LLC, Arlington, Virginia, was awarded a Systems Engineering, Technology, and Innovation prime integrator task order (HC102820F2000) for an estimated $106,352,518 to design and build the Joint Common Foundation artificial intelligence development environment for the Department of Defense Joint Artificial Intelligence Center. The period of performance is a one-year base period from August 17, 2020, through August 16, 2021, valued at approximately $31,000,000, with three one-year option periods through August 16, 2024. Work will be performed in the greater Washington, D.C., area.
The U.S. Army wants an automated communications planning system. In the short term, researchers expect to use an “intelligent engine” but in the future, artificial intelligence will likely take over the task.
Planning communications for different conditions is commonly known as PACE planning. The acronym stands for “primary, alternate, contingency and emergency” communications. Different situations call for different communications systems, explains Michael Brownfield, chief of the Army Future Capabilities Office within the Combat Capabilities Development Command’s research organization formally named the Command and Control, Communications, Computers, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C5ISR) Center.
Manned-unmanned teaming technologies being assessed in a weeks-long experiment are receiving mostly positive reviews from Army officials and non-commissioned officers.
The Next Generation Combat Vehicle Cross-Functional Team and Combat Capabilities Development Command’s Ground Vehicle Systems Center are conducting soldier operational experiments at Ft. Carson, Colorado, from June 15 through August 14. The goal is to observe, collect and analyze feedback from soldiers to assess the feasibility of integrating unmanned vehicles into ground combat formations.
Transparency and integrity are two key principles headlining the list of artificial intelligence (AI) ethics released by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). This list, released in combination with an AI ethics framework for the community, represents the first strike by the ODNI to apply guidance to the development and use of AI in the intelligence community.
Robots may one day learn to perform complex tasks simply by watching humans accomplish those tasks. That ability will allow people without programming skills to teach artificial intelligence systems to conduct certain functions or missions.
Teaching artificial intelligence systems or robots usually requires software engineers. Those programmers normally interview domain experts on what they need the machines to do and then translate that information into programming language, explains Ankit Shah, a graduate student in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AeroAstro) and the Interactive Robotics Group at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
Industry and government organizations are eager to find ways to combine structured and unstructured data to improve communications about national security threats to the public more effectively. Merging this information will enable the intelligence community (IC) to take advantage of the strengths of both data types and allow analysts to quickly search and assess structured data with the wealth of insights in the unstructured environment.
The U.S. Department of Defense is purchasing vehicle recognition software from Columbia, Maryland-based Rekor Systems, Inc., which specializes in roadway artificial intelligence-based platforms. Under the $160,000 license purchase, DOD will deploy the software to existing cameras to support national security efforts, the company announced on June 22. The software can identify in real time vehicle license plate data, along with the color, make, model and body type of vehicles.
To harness the technological revolution in the face of rising adversarial competition, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency issued its first report in 2019 publicly outlining areas of focus for capability adoption. This year, the agency, known as the NGA, issued a strategy as well as identifying focus areas. The NGA is looking for technologies from the commercial sector to support joint warfighters in an era of great power competition in advanced analytics and modeling; data management; modern software engineering; artificial intelligence; and future of work. The agency also emphasized not only improving the U.S.’s competitive stance “in all realms,” but also supporting allied advancements.
Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was awarded a $70,000,000 cost-no-fee contract for research and development of an artificial intelligence innovation framework. Bids were solicited via the internet with one received. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of April 6, 2025. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity (W911NF-20-D-0002).
The concern of machine ethics and laws spills into the everyday workings of society, not just the domain of defense. Many concepts revolve around the law of armed conflict, societal law, ethical dilemmas, psychological concepts and artificially intelligent cyber systems, as well as their relationships among each other. In addition to the delineation of machine ethic guidelines, an ethical life cycle is necessary to account for changes over time in national circumstances and personal beliefs. Just recently, the Defense Innovation Board, which serves as an advisory board to the Pentagon, met and published ethical guidelines in designing and implementing artificially intelligent weapons.
A mushroom cloud explosion in the New Mexico desert on July 16, 1945 forever changed the nature of warfare. Science had given birth to weapons so powerful they could end humanity. To survive, the United States had to develop new strategies and policies that responsibly limited nuclear weapon proliferation and use. Warfare is again changing as modern militaries integrate autonomous and semiautonomous weapon systems into their arsenals. The United States must act swiftly to maximize the potential of these new technologies or risk losing its dominance.
“There’s a war out there, old friend. A world war. And it’s not about who’s got the most bullets. It’s about who controls the information. What we see and hear, how we work, what we think … it’s all about the information.” These lines are from the 1992 movie Sneakers, a film exploring the possibility of a decryption machine that could break any code, obliterating the ability to protect secrets. Nearly three decades later, the fictitious decoder still doesn’t exist, but the importance of data has grown exponentially.