A breakthrough in artificial intelligence being tested by the Australian military reportedly allows soldiers to control robot dogs solely with their minds. They are synced with the troopers’ minds.
The breakthrough AI allows soldiers to control these robot dogs or ‘robodogs’ using advanced digital “telepathy,” according to a video released by the Australian army last week.
Called a brain robotic interface, the state-of-the-art artificial intelligence — through a high-tech biosensor headset — analyzes brainwave readings and feeds them from a person’s visual cortex into the advanced “robodog,” Newsflash reported.
The technology, which was buoyed by a $1.2 million military investment, was worked on for the past three years in a collaboration between the University of Technology Sydney and the army’s Robotic and Autonomous Implementation and Coordination Office (RICO).
“The whole process is not difficult to master. It’s very intuitive. It only took a couple of sessions,” said 5th Combat Service Support Battalion Sergeant Damian Robinson, who test-drove the HoloLens headset.
Robinson and fellow soldiers did course training with mind-reading headsets and robodogs, in which they were able to successfully navigate harsh terrain and bad weather on a makeshift battlefield.
The army “is exploring the use of brain signals to control robotic and autonomous systems.” reads the video description.
“The Robotic and Autonomous Systems Implementation & Coordination Office (RICO) is nested within our Future Land Warfare Branch and works closely with industry and stakeholders.”
“It’s more of a visual concentration thing,” said Sergeant Robinson.
“You don’t have to think anything specific to operate the robot, but you do need to focus on that flicker.”
Flickering beacons, perceived as augmented reality in the headsets, act as markers that the canine-like automatons march toward. These are currently the key to keeping the bots on course.
So far, the dog — manufactured by Ghost Robotics — is capable of nine different commands during a fixed time, according to Prof. Chin-Teng Lin.
“Together, we endeavor to transform the protection and efficiency of our defense forces in an increasingly accelerated environment that demands technological changes,” further read the video description.
“Through this collaboration, we are testing the realm of possibilities that will ensure we are #FutureReady.”