Tags: DARPA

Linux Powered Smart Rifles With Networked Tracking Scopes Have Arrived

Technological advancement is moving ahead so fast it is impossible to keep up. Pretty soon it doesn’t look like humans are going to be responsible for much of anything at all if we continue at this pace.

The latest military “advancement” is a Linux powered rifle that basically only requires the human soldier to mark a target and then a computer can “engage and assist.” Basically it sounds a lot like a drone rifle. Insane.

More from Geeky Gadgets:

It has been reported this week that the United States military has started investing funds into next-generation firearms in the form of “smart rifles” that will be powered by Linux and equipped with a Networked Tracking Scope.

A soldier equipped with a smart rifle and its new Networked Tracking Scope would simply need to tag a target viewable on a screen, which is found on the gun’s scope to allows the computer to engage and assist.

Tracking Point has announced that the US military has purchased six of its new next-generation “smart rifles”, that are priced at between $10,000 and $27,000 each.

Check it out below:


Hunting with a bow and arrow it is not.

For other articles on advancements in military/spy technology check out:

Meet the MQ-4C Triton – A New Navy Drone with the Wingspan of a Boeing 757

DARPA Unveils “Atlas”: A 6 Foot Tall Humanoid Robot

Meet ARGUS: The World’s Highest Resolution Video Surveillance Platform

In Liberty,
Michael Krieger

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Meet the MQ-4C Triton – A New Navy Drone with the Wingspan of a Boeing 757

Spying on humanity’s every electronic move is clearly not good enough for the U.S. government. It is also necessary to be able to surveil the species’ every move from 50,000 feet in the sky. You know, because of the terrorists and all.

The past couple of years have seen many frightening new advances from the U.S. military. From “Atlas” the 6 Foot Tall Humanoid Robot, to “ARGUS” The World’s Highest Resolution Video Surveillance Platform, to domestic drone use, the Department of Defense is hard at work making sure that you can never engage in a private act again without the fear of a hellfire missile landing on your head.

Now here’s the latest…a Northrop Grumman drone with the wingspan of a 757.

From Wired:

A new drone with the mammoth wingspan of a Boeing 757 is set to give the U.S. Navy some serious surveillance power.

Northrop Grumman and the Navy say they’ve just completed the ninth flight trial of the Triton unmanned aircraft system (UAS), an improvement upon its predecessor in the Air Force, the Global Hawk.

With its 130-foot wingspan, Triton will provide high-altitude, real-time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) from a sensor suite that supplies a 360-degree view at a radius of over 2,000 nautical miles, allowing monitoring from higher and farther away than any of its competitors.

Thus far, Triton has completed flights up to 9.4 hours at altitudes of 50,000 feet at the company’s manufacturing facility in Palmdale, California. According to Northrop Grumman, Triton could support missions up to 24 hours.

Now here’s this sucker in the wild.

Sleep tight serfs.

Full article here.

In Liberty,
Mike

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Former FBI Agent: All Phone Conversations are Recorded and Stored

So it seems the surveillance state just had its coming out party on CNN.  In this interview with Erin Burnett, former FBI counterterrorism agent Tim Clemente admits that the feds have access to pretty much everyone’s telephone conversations.  Also pay attention to the smirk on his face as he admits this disturbing reality.


Glenn Greenwald at the Guardian wrote an excellent piece yesterday on this exact topic.  Some of my favorite excerpts:

The real capabilities and behavior of the US surveillance state are almost entirely unknown to the American public because, like most things of significance done by the US government, it operates behind an impenetrable wall of secrecy. But a seemingly spontaneous admission this week by a former FBI counterterrorism agent provides a rather startling acknowledgment of just how vast and invasive these surveillance activities are.

Over the past couple days, cable news tabloid shows such as CNN’s Out Front with Erin Burnett have been excitingly focused on the possible involvement in the Boston Marathon attack of Katherine Russell, the 24-year-old American widow of the deceased suspect, Tamerlan Tsarnaev. As part of their relentless stream of leaks uncritically disseminated by our Adversarial Press Corps, anonymous government officials are claiming that they are now focused on telephone calls between Russell and Tsarnaev that took place both before and after the attack to determine if she had prior knowledge of the plot or participated in any way.

“All of that stuff” – meaning every telephone conversation Americans have with one another on US soil, with or without a search warrant – “is being captured as we speak”.

Let’s repeat that last part: “no digital communication is secure”, by which he means not that any communication is susceptible to government interception as it happens (although that is true), but far beyond that: all digital communications – meaning telephone calls, emails, online chats and the like – are automatically recorded and stored and accessible to the government after the fact. To describe that is to define what a ubiquitous, limitless Surveillance State is.

There have been some previous indications that this is true. FormerAT&T engineer Mark Klein revealed that AT&T and other telecoms had built a special network that allowed the National Security Agency full and unfettered access to data about the telephone calls and the content of email communications for all of their customers. Specifically, Klein explained “that the NSA set up a system that vacuumed up Internet and phone-call data from ordinary Americans with the cooperation of AT&T” and that “contrary to the government’s depiction of its surveillance program as aimed at overseas terrorists . . . much of the data sent through AT&T to the NSA was purely domestic.” But his amazing revelations were mostly ignored and, when Congress retroactively immunized the nation’s telecom giants for their participation in the illegal Bush spying programs, Klein’s claims (by design) were prevented from being adjudicated in court.

Read the Full Article »

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Meet ARGUS: The World’s Highest Resolution Video Surveillance Platform

The most interesting this about this creepy camera brought to you by the kind folks at the Defense Advance d Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is the fact that just like in George Orwell’s classic dystopic novel 1984, the government wants you to know they have this technology.  From ExtremeTech:

DARPA and the US Army have taken the wraps off ARGUS-IS, a 1.8-gigapixel video surveillance platform that can resolve details as small as six inches from an altitude of 20,000 feet (6km). ARGUS is by far the highest-resolution surveillance platform in the world, and probably the highest-resolution camera in the world, period.

ARGUS, which would be attached to some kind of unmanned UAV (such as the Predator) and flown at an altitude of around 20,000 feet, can observe an area of 25 square kilometers (10sqmi) at any one time. If ARGUS was hovering over New York City, it could observe half of Manhattan. Two ARGUS-equipped drones, and the US could keep an eye on the entirety of Manhattan, 24/7.

Read the Full Article »

Next Generation Drones to be Equipped with Lasers

Time magazine is out with a heartwarming story about how the next generation of drones, or as some like to call them “freedom birds,” may be equipped with lasers.  Although most Americans don’t realize it, our skies are already filled with drones as I pointed out in my piece last week titled  Drones in America?  They are Already Here…

From Time:

But folks at General Atomics are getting increasingly excited by the HELLADS — the High Energy Liquid Laser Defense System. It is designed to shrink a flying laser into a package small enough to cram onto an aircraft.

“It would give us an unlimited magazine,” says one person close to the program. There’s talk that it could be fielded within five years.

In other words, an unmanned aircraft could not only give U.S. forces a so-called “persistent presence” overhead, it wouldn’t have to return to base after firing its pair of missiles for lack of additional firepower.

Just wait until you have a laser armed drone over your head targeting you for not paying your ObamaCare tax.  Mission Accomplished!

To add insult to injury, watch General Atomics video promoting these things.  Killing really is just a video game to these guys.

Full article here.

In Liberty,
Mike

Drones in America? They are Already Here…

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is one of the most important organizations we have in America today.  While most of the country lays fast asleep to the dangers of the encroaching surveillance state, the EFF is always vigilantly at work on the front lines.  In their latest article, they show that military drones are already flying all over these United States and, using information received from a FOIA lawsuit they provide important details on what is flying and where.  You may be shocked at some of their conclusions.  From the EFF:

These records, received as a result of EFF’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), come from state and local law enforcement agencies, universities and—for the first time—three branches of the U.S. military: the Air Force, Marine Corps, and DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency).

The records show that the Air Force has been testing out a bunch of different drone types, from the smaller, hand-launched Raven, Puma and Wasp drones designed by Aerovironment in Southern California, to the much larger Predator and Reaper drones responsible for civilian and foreign military deaths abroad. The Marine Corps is also testing drones, though it chose to redact so much of the text from its records that we still don’t know much about its programs.

Perhaps the scariest is the technology carried by a Reaper drone the Air Force is flying near Lincoln, Nevada and in areas of California and Utah. This drone uses “Gorgon Stare” technology, which Wikipedia defines as “a spherical array of nine cameras attached to an aerial drone . . . capable of capturing motion imagery of an entire city.” This imagery “can then be analyzed by humans or an artificial intelligence, such as the Mind’s Eye project” being developed by DARPA. If true, this technology takes surveillance to a whole new level.

While LIDAR can be used to create high-resolution images of the earth’s surface, it is also used in high tech police speed guns—begging the question of whether drones will soon be used for minor traffic violations.

However, once again, the records do not show that the FAA had any concerns about drone flights’ impact on privacy and civil liberties. This is especially problematic when drone programs like Otter Tail’s appear on first glance to be benign but later turn out to support the same problematic law enforcement uses that EFF has been increasingly concerned about.

It’s been over a year and a half since we first filed our FOIA request with the FAA, and we’re still waiting for more than half of the agency’s drone records. This is unacceptable.

Like with any new technology, drones can be put to good use or to evil use.  Just like nuclear power can harness energy or destroy humanity altogether, drones could do a lot of good, but the problem is that the government is clearly moving more and more towards a surveillance state so we must be extra careful.  Stay vigilant.

Full article here.

In Liberty,
Mike