Today's Washington Post contains an article by David Ignatius that reports on the DoD's "third offset" strategy. As the Post describes it, the idea broadly speaking is to use "the latest tools of artificial intelligence and machine learning to create robot weapons, 'human-machine teams' and enhanced, super-powered soldiers." Some of the specifics include "advanced navigation for smart weapons using micro-cameras and sensors; missile-defense systems using hypervelocity projectiles; and swarming drones that are 'really fast, really resistant.'"
All of that is well and good. It would, indeed, be useful if DoD developed these capabilities in defense of American interests. But from the outsider's perspective, I wonder two things:
- What steps are being taken to secure this intellectual and technological advantage against theft? We don't have a great track record of keeping military secrets of this sort secret.
- What steps are being taken to insure that this new network of cyber-enabled weapons is secure against degredation, disruption or destruction through cyber means? Again, our networks are not perfectly secure. (This is but one example of many I could cite).
I fully support taking advantage of America's technological advantage. I just hope we are able to maintain it.