Huh? DAPRA GC was not a good thing?

Well, now that I'm all wound up, I might as well get it off my chest. Forgive me if I don't want to participate in the thread much after
launch, depending on how it goes. These things really get to me. I have my health to worry about. But I do think this much needs saying, so there's at least one contrary postion to popular opinion out there.
Ever wonder about the Trinity scientists? What were they thinking? Or the german scientists with their Vbombs? Shouldn't they have known where their work was going? Or were they immune to the moral consequences of their actions, since they didn't actually deliver the weapons.
I just wonder how history will review us, the makers of autonomous robots, looking back. Will they say; Hey, what were those guys thinking? The DARPA contests that started it all, were obviously rigged, and unconstitutionally to boot. Hello!?!? Red flag there! Yet those guys went ahead! They made the machines even though they should have known government was out of control. They just _gave_ their work to the inspectors, ignoring their own property rights, in order to have a chance at the prize. The the inspectors stole the best of what the guys came up with. Big surprize, right? They all got high paying jobs with the weapons makers, who probably paid for the senators and judges elections anyway. None of the real inventors ever got a thing. What did they think those robots were going to be used for? What were those robot guys thinking!
Can't happen here? It just did.
And here we are, strutting around like bumpkins after the country fair, with our thumbs in our suspenders, bragging how close we came to winning those prizes.
We entered a confidence game with a couple known shills in the group, government funded agencies, who in the end wound up with all the government supplied (tax dollar) prize money, by spending even more government supplied money than they won. Is anybody surprized by how it turned out?
For a bunch of smart, sophisticated fellows, who love to read science fiction dramas about the bad guys using trickery to acquire technology, we sure didn't say much when we lived through it.
Our little robotics community just spent, ?what?, $40 million or more, creating something that we should have been paid $40 billion for?
and without even the promise of a kiss afterwards.
And that's supposedly a good thing for us? Hummm... what were we thinking?
--
Randy M. Dumse

Caution: Objects in mirror are more confused than they appear.
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Randy M. Dumse wrote:
< snip >
Whats the diff.
Robot blowing you up or Religous Zelot (Copyright 2005) Blowing you up.
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What's the difference between being blow up with a robot of your own design, and being blown up by a religious zealot?
If you can't see through the difference between complicit suicide and homicide with rational thought, you could always pray for guidance.
--
Randy M. Dumse

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Some would say that the religious zealot was a consequence of our actions as well.
I don't necessarily agree... but some are saying that.
--
Thanks,

Dean
"Randy M. Dumse" < snipped-for-privacy@newmicros.com> wrote in message
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$$ and recognition. AKA Fortune and Fame.
Yeah, you should have been paid $40billion. That's how much it would have ended up costing if they'd developed it themselves. $30.8 billion to pad their pockets and their buddies pockets, 1.2billion for parts and labor.
Don't start worrying until Mr. Bush sends autonomous genocide machines running your code to the middle east. The USA can now waste even more money on "war", and less people will be disturbed (no US lives at stake).
The technology "community" should start it's own competition. Each company puts in $100k. Who ever wins the challenge gets the pot. All the companies benefit with the technology break-thrus..we can benefit tech field and ourselves instead of the aristocrats...
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Here's my suggestion for a commercial contest, plus help for the common man, not to mention the poor 1500-pound moose.
The Moose Grand Challenge. [sounds better than The White-Tailed Deer Challenge]
Many 1000s of deer and moose are hit by cars every year. Most after dark in rural areas. Blighters are hard to see outside the headlight beams, when you're doing 75 MPH or so on a back highway. This site says 350,000 roadkill deer every year.
http://www.santacruzhub.org/pp/roadkill/stats.htm
Probably the main product of the Darpa GC was development of sensors and algorithms capable of guiding a vehicle over bad terrain at 20 MPH or so. Something similar could be used to detect and avoid moose and deer in the night, saving both animals and many millions in repair bills.
"Save the Moose"
- dan michaels www.oricomtech.com ======================
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dan michaels wrote:

It would be cheaper to put reflectors on the moose and deer. Red on the right side, blue on the left side. Or is it the other way around?...
-- Gordon
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Gordon McComb wrote:

And maybe a big flashing led on the butt.
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Gordon McComb wrote:

And maybe a flashing white led on the butt.
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dan michaels wrote:

you see, noone cares to save a life of a deer, but to take a life of a human better is something worth of $2M prize. if you have problems with that, perhaps, you morals are all wrong?
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Grow up, the goal of preventing Deer/Moose car crashes is to prevent the lost of Human life. Hitting a deer is likely to total your car, and has a reasonably good chance of killing someone in the car when the deer goes through the windshield as the usually do. Hitting a Moose at any speed is quite likely to be fatal to you. If you are going too fast, 1000+ pound of Moose lands on top of you at high speed. If you are going too slow, the Moose stomps you and your car flat.
On you other point, the purpose of making more automated weapons is to save the lives of US soldiers, by minimizing their exposure to danger. The more accurate and lethal weapons also save the lives of many civillians in the area by allowing precision targeting of command and control or troops. In the old days, before robotic cruise missile, Laser guided bombs the technique was to bomb a wide area around the target, or to fly in close at great risk with only a <50% chance of hitting the target. I hate BUsh with a passion, but if he wanted to commit Genocide, he could just had B-52's carpet bomb all the Sunnis Majority Cities in Iraq at a fraction of the cost in blood and treasure. If he was really crazy, he could have just nuked the cities from the Oval Office in less than one hour, and then claim that Iraq was about to launch a nuclear strike against the USA. SInce the evidence would have been destoryed by the Nukes, this course would have been far more believable than the one he choose.
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Muddy wrote:

These are all side-effects; the primary value, as you have outlined it, is making "more accurate and lethal weapons".
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Nope, the Military wants these weapons for two primary reasons, both largely political. 1. Save American lives because pilots cost money, and Americans rightfully get really upset when the cream of their youth are wasted. 2. Limit the killing of Civillians because of the negative political effects at home and abroad.
Of course every single military officers I have ever met from Lt to General really does hurt deeply when they lose men, and every bomber pilot worries about civillians they kill for the rest of their lives. The pilots also worry about the soldiers they kill, though no one I have met worries about the leaders of the enemy they have killed.
Almost all the Military objectives could have been carried out cheaper with unguided bombs, WMDs. Note the USA used lots of WMDs in the first Iraq war. The fuel air bombs are just as explosive as medium nukes, and larger than many tactical ones. They just aren't as messy and don't cause as much lingering death. I promise you that reasons one and two are the primary reason for most of the new weapons. The exception would be the larger bunker busters, but those again are designed to get extremely high value, fortified targets.
If the USA had done the second Iraq war, with wider ranging targets with WW II type dumb bombs 100,000's to millions more Iraqis would have died and the major cities would have looked like the Japanessee cities did at the end of WW II.
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My wife misunderstands my motivations. I insist on doing the driving as much as is possible not because I like to drive, but because I am the most qualified. Be that as it may... I personally would prefer to let the car drive itself, just as soon as they are capable of doing so safely and expeditiously. Until that time, however, there is room in the car for only one driver.
If the car isn't qualified to drive itself on an open road, why would I trust it to avoid collisions? If it were capable of driving itself in congestion and avoidance maneuvers, why would I undertake to hold the wheel on the mundane open road portions? There is room in the car for only one driver.
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Good lord, far be it from me to come between a man and his automobile. This is america, after all. I was suggesting an auxiliary sensor system, not a man-replacement system, like other guys are talking about, re the Darpa GC.
I didn't actually mean to use the word avoid, in the sense of the car doing the avoiding. I meant having sensors to detect the moose/deer, so the driver might be warned enuf ahead of time that he might do the avoiding. The sensors are the important part, which are missing, not the driver :). Couple of years ago, I was driving at nite about 60-65 on a rural road and a deer ran out of nowheres and across in front of me. All I saw was a "flash" going across the headlight beams, and it was sheer lucky timing that the deer made it past my front bumper. Missed hitting its rear end by about 6". No chance to even react, since I never saw the darn thing till it had crossed. Those deer are none too bright.
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You also misunderstand. I'm ready to be a passenger, just as soon as cars are ready to pilot themselves.

Ride a motorcycle long enough and you'll meet and talk with people who ran into deer, or lost someone that way.
A short stretch of I-90 in Indiana has roadside large wildlife sensors. They light up warning signs spaced about a mile apart, likely corresponding to sensor zones. I've never seen them on, and have to wonder how effective they can be. Knowing that there might be deer in the neighborhood is one thing; I assume that all the time anyway. To be really effective, they would have to light up the roadside like a ballfield so you can see the deer early enough to avoid them. Alas, I think the real purpose is not so much to save the one deer or carload that are about to meet. The real danger of a deer strike is the effect on traffic behind. You can't save the deer, I don't think, but maybe you can help the car behind the car that hit the deer. Drivers on the interstate at night apparently need minutes, not milliseconds, of warning and response time. To bring this full circle and back on topic, it's all the more reason for cars to drive themselves, hopefully with better awareness of its surroundings than the zombies now holding the wheels.
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But why all the high tech engineering.....I thought that all you needed to avoid deer were those little whistles you bolt on to your car... Why have an overcomplicated high tech solution when a low tech solution is sufficient?
--
Thanks,

Dean Burell
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I have it on good authority that your St. Christopher's medal works about as well. The Dashboard Jesus, though, seems different. That works a charm on all manner of ills.

The point is that they don't work, and can't be made to work, the same as it is inherently more dangerous to step into the bathtub for your morning shower than it is to stay sedentary in bed.
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I just figured out what's wrong with cruise missiles: They're fast, and don't crawl through the dirt feeling their way along. WTF.
BTW, defense spending is a good thing (tm). Unless they start shopping it overseas, of course, which entirely defeats the purpose. Did you think bombs were the first or only result of that spending?
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How many lost American lives were prevented because we used armed Predator drones and the unarmed ones for surveilance.
Damn those RC plane builders!
Of course with out the research into miniturization that the government funds.... we probably wouldn't have ipod nano's and GB memory sticks either....
Damn the government for plagueing us with disposable commercial electronic gizmos that are obsolete the day we buy them!
--
Thanks,

Dean
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