Here's a demonstration of the X-47B UCAS on the USS Truman. On any other day you'd say, "okay, big deal" another weapon to add to the US Navy's suite of naval weaponry.

But what if I told you there was no one sitting in the X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) taking the commands from the ground signalman? That's right, here's a weapon that interprets the signalman's actions and just does what it's told to do.

  http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/beijing/groups/hci/

http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/beijing/groups/hci/

The world we live in has become suffused with computer technologies. They have created change and continue to create change. It is not only on our desktops and in our hands that this is manifest; it is in virtually all aspects of our lives, in our communities, and in the wider society of which we are a part.

[ HCI 2020 produced many ideas, both thrilling and troubling.  This report is not a conventional publication of an academic conference but seeks to convey the passion of those ideas, for the general reader and the HCI practitioner. For the general reader, this is important because knowledge of what the future might be may empower, while ignorance harm. For the HCI practitioner, its purpose is to map out the terrain and suggest new approaches while keeping an eye on the main prize: the embodiment of human values at the heart of computing. 

This two-day forum brought together academics from the fields of computing, design, management science, sociology and psychology to debate, contribute to, and help formulate the agenda for Human-Computer Interaction in the next decade and beyond. Participants also came from the commercial world, including representatives from software companies, hardware manufacturers, and content providers.]

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image : http://www.embedded-vision.com/
image : http://www.embedded-vision.com/

"...DARPA links human brainwaves, improved sensors, cognitive algorithms to improve target detection ."

[ For warfighters operating in the field, the ability to detect threats from standoff distances can be life-saving. When advanced radar and drone coverage is not available, warfighters typically rely on their own vision to scan their surroundings. Scanning over a wide area, though, is challenging because of the amount of territory that must be reviewed, the limited field of view of the human eye, and the effects of fatigue. Current technologies like binoculars, cameras, and portable radars can help to improve visibility and increase the threat detection rate. Unfortunately, current miss rates of 47 percent or greater using these technologies leave warfighters unprepared and vulnerable. ]

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Further reading here

Here are a few articles on the news breaking out of the UK on a 2013 research initiative out of Cambridge University on the existential risks of AI/robots.

Robot uprising by Digital Trends

 

 

Risk of robot uprising wiping out human race to be studied by BBC News

See also the Centre for the Study of Existenial Risk by Cambridge University (CSER)

"Many scientists are concerned that developments in human technology may soon pose new, extinction-level risks to our species as a whole. Such dangers have been suggested from progress in AI, from developments in biotechnology and artificial life, from nanotechnology, and from possible extreme effects of anthropogenic climate change. The seriousness of these risks is difficult to assess, but that in itself seems a cause for concern, given how much is at stake."