ATLAS Is Getting Faster and Faster At Simple Human Tasks

Oh sure, we all pointed and laughed at ATLAS when it was first revealed, stumbling over simple obstacles. But it was because deep down we all knew that like our original iPods, it would quickly evolve into something far more capable. And here we are, just over a year later, and ATLAS is already tackling simple… » 10/24/14 1:30pm Yesterday 1:30pm

Isaac Asimov's Newly Published 1959 Paper for DARPA on Creativity

Isaac Asimov was one of the great sci-fi writers of the 20th century. So naturally, at the dawn of the space age, the military wanted to tap his brain. In 1959 he was approached by ARPA (now known as DARPA) to "think outside of the box" about how ideas are formed. His brief work for the organization has never been… » 10/20/14 7:14pm Monday 7:14pm

Video: Inside the cockpit of DARPA's awesome missile-dodging buggy

Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne would feel at home inside DARPA's GXV-T missile-dodging superbuggy. This video shows how the Pentagon's research arm wants the cockpit to be: Closed, with high-definition touch screens providing wide-angle visibility and displaying combat information in augmented reality. It's really… » 10/09/14 10:37am 10/09/14 10:37am

DARPA's Experimental Tank May One Day Dodge Incoming Threats

Last month, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency introduced what a next-generation tank might look like. Known as the Ground X-Vehicle Technology (GXV-T) program, this experimental vehicle is less like the traditional heavily armored brutes typically on the battlefield. These are built for speed. » 9/07/14 9:00am 9/07/14 9:00am

The ATLAS Humanoid Robot Has Advanced To the Level Of a Lazy Teenager

The first videos we saw of DARPA's advanced ATLAS robot it was just an infant, learning to walk and balance on its own. During the DARPA Robotics Challenge the humanoid robot handled itself like a capable child. And now almost a year later the folks at MIT are happy to announce that ATLAS has finally reached the level… » 9/05/14 11:55am 9/05/14 11:55am

Soldiers Describe How DARPA Smartphones Save Lives in Battle

The average pedestrian walks around with more sophisticated navigation and communication technology in his pocket than our soldiers have on the battlefield. That's why the military is working hard on developing a battle-ready smartphone that would bring our troops up to speed. According to the soldiers who've tested… » 9/04/14 10:54am 9/04/14 10:54am

Why the Military Is Pinning Its Hopes on Google's Modular Phone

In its small red brick headquarters, Vanderbilt's Institute for Software Integrated Systems (ISIS) is working on a revolution in smartphone technology. It's not better screens, or battery life, or anything for a major carrier. It's a puzzle-piece phone that will (hopefully) change the way the military communicates. » 8/18/14 3:26pm 8/18/14 3:26pm

The US government spent $1 billion in the 1980s trying to build Skynet

Believe it or not, the U.S. government actually spent about $1 billion in the 1980s trying to build a program like Skynet from the Terminator movies. DARPA — an agency that's sometimes called the "mad science" research arm of the Defense Department — worked on developing driverless vehicles, a pilot's assistant like… » 8/01/14 11:34am 8/01/14 11:34am

Self-Guided Bullets That Change Course Midair Are Now Terrifyingly Real

The military masterminds at DARPA have just changed everything you think you know about bullets. Meet the Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance, or EXACTO, a .50 caliber bullet that maneuvers itself midair to stay locked on target. Here's footage of the first live test: it sure as hell looks like the technology works. » 7/12/14 10:00am 7/12/14 10:00am

The 10 Maddest of the Mad Science Projects Funded by DARPA

Founded in 1958 to prevent technological surprises such as Sputnik, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency funds projects that are both outside the box and off the wall. Although DARPA gave us the Internet and GPS, plenty of its blue-sky ideas have crashed back down to Earth. Here are ten of them. » 6/30/14 2:41pm 6/30/14 2:41pm

DARPA's Robotics Challenge Finals Just Got A Whole Lot Harder

DARPA just announced the details of the final round of its years-long Robotics Challenge, and boy, do they sound difficult. Not only will all the robots have to work wirelessly and without human intervention, the course must be completed all at once. If a robot falls and can't get it up, it's done. » 6/26/14 4:20pm 6/26/14 4:20pm

DARPA's Gecko-Inspired Gloves Let Anyone Climb Up Flat Walls

Who among us hasn't wished to be licked by a radioactive tropical lizard, only to be granted the incredible ability to harness Van der Waal forces and scale even glassy vertical walls? Finally, we can stop microwaving all those geckos because DARPA has just unveiled a new climbing system that works exactly the same… » 6/06/14 2:00pm 6/06/14 2:00pm

How Darpa's Using the Oculus Rift to Make a Cyberwarfare Battlefield

Wired just published a in-depth piece on how Darpa is "weaponizing" the Oculus Rift for cyberwar. But does this mean that soldiers are about to start firing at each other in virtual reality? No, of course not. But it's an interesting development for a piece of technology dreamt up for games (in which you often shoot… » 5/23/14 2:00pm 5/23/14 2:00pm

This DARPA invention gives soldiers Terminator vision

DARPA has finally demonstrated one of its most promising inventions: An augmented-reality HUD system that will give soldiers the same advantage of a jet fighter pilot. It displays battlefield data over the soldier's environment, identifying friendly and enemy forces on land and air in real time. » 5/22/14 5:39pm 5/22/14 5:39pm

The ATLAS Robot Will Soon Be Walking Without a Tether

As impressive as Boston Dynamics' humanoid robot ATLAS moves, it's still not completely free to explore wherever it wants. Thick trunk lines keep it tethered to machinery and pumps that provide power, hyrdraulic fluids, and of course communications and data. But researchers at MIT are now working to free ATLAS of its… » 4/08/14 11:20am 4/08/14 11:20am