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Bionic Warrior: Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Cloaking, Directed Energy and Cyber Weapons

By Paul Evancoe

The United States dedicates significant resources in defense spending with the objective of keeping its competitors and numerous potential enemies focused upon discord between one another. A divisive new breed of technology is emerging that provides the necessary war-fighting capabilities to meet this challenge. The traditional rifle-carrying soldier will largely be replaced by the bionic warrior: a composite capability composed of human, artificial intelligence (AI), bionic, robotic and other high technology capabilities that can be brought to bear at both the strategic and tactical levels.

What is a bionic warrior? Is he envisioned as some kind of super-sophisticated robot that Hollywood often depicts? Is he a part human—part machine cyborg? To put the bionic warrior in the proper perspective, he should be thought of as an integrated family of capabilities with a scenario-driven configuration menu (plug and play). Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the foundation of the bionic warrior along with most every supporting piece of his kit. This is because the bionic warrior must, above all, have connectivity to, and interoperability with, his supporting family of capabilities, i.e., the numerous interoperable, immediately accessible, capabilities.

With the above said, let’s explore the bionic warrior concept, while remembering that everything in the bionic warrior’s kit has a relationship to AI in one form or another. Think of it this way: AI is the bionic warrior’s brain, and electrical energy is the heartbeat and blood that powers him. Component interoperability and configurability (mobility, sensors, weapons) provide the right capabilities (defense, offense, other) for mission-specific requirements. Let’s also keep in mind that this concept has begun to transition into the civilian market for sporting and personal defense applications. More on this later.

Artificial Intelligence

First, let’s consider the bionic warrior’s brain—Artificial Intelligence. While AI technology is developing at an exponential pace, today’s computing speed and memory thresholds limit its advancement. The domain of shared human and AI-controlled smart machines is still in its infancy. Combining human and artificial intelligence into functional synergetic processes that control weapon systems and their delivery platforms remains in sight but is...

This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V22N8 (October 2018)
and was posted online on August 24, 2018

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