Why Motherships Are Making A Big Comeback For Sending Things Into Space

Most of the time, we think of space-faring rockets as being launched from the ground. As demand for satellite launch services rapidly increases year-over-year, interest in air launching rockets is returning to a growing market of lighter-weight payloads. And those might want a mothership. »10/06/15 4:59pm10/06/15 4:59pm


How far are we from Terminator's killing robots? DARPA has the answer

Movies like the Terminator series have convinced us that robots are eventually going to kill us all. That’s still eventually going to happen but we’ve got a long way to go before we build a T-1000 or even an Arnold version, because as DARPA’s 2015 Robotics Challenge shows, even the best and smartest robots right now… »6/08/15 6:45pm6/08/15 6:45pm

What It Feels Like to Shoot With the Military’s Experimental Smart Scope

You’ve probably never fired an M4 carbine. Until a couple weeks ago, I hadn’t either. But at a recent DARPA demo day, I loaded a magazine (also a first for me), snuggled up to the deadly assault rifle, and looked through one of the most technologically advanced smart scopes ever built. Then I pulled the trigger. »4/28/15 2:29pm4/28/15 2:29pm

Forward Air Controller Uses Android Tablet To Rapidly Order Air Strike

DARPA is working hard on making it easier for Forward Air Controllers to order fast precision air strikes under chaotic and stressful conditions. Under a new initiative, a revolutionary new way of calling in crucial air support includes migrating away from clumsy radios and hardbook laptops to Android tablets and… »4/09/15 4:20pm4/09/15 4:20pm

DARPA Hacked Together a Super Cheap Google Glass-Like Display

Helmet-mounted displays are priceless on the battlefield. And expensive: The proto-Google Glass headset, for instance, is absolutely useful for the average soldier, but way too pricey to be practical. That’s why folks at DARPA are freaking out about the heads up display that researchers hacked together for a few… »4/07/15 12:45pm4/07/15 12:45pm

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 10:21am9/07/14 10:21am

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 11:34am7/12/14 11:34am

DARPA Tried to Build Skynet in the 1980s

From 1983 to 1993 DARPA spent over $1 billion on a program called the Strategic Computing Initiative. The agency's goal was to push the boundaries of computers, artificial intelligence, and robotics to build something that, in hindsight, looks strikingly similar to the dystopian future of the Terminator movies. They… »12/18/13 3:58pm12/18/13 3:58pm

Boeing Designed and Built This Slick VTOL Drone In Just 27 Days

DARPA's always working on a bunch of crazy projects, whether it's to find the next insane robot hero, or just Star Wars robot arms. On their long list of wants is an unmanned "X-Plane" that can do vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) like the dope-ass F-35B. Boeing whipped up this slick contest entry in 27 days. »9/15/13 9:36am9/15/13 9:36am