December 30, 2017

The Pentagon is using AI to fight ISIS but it's not quite the 'Terminator'

By Gregory C. Allen

Conversations about the military use of artificial intelligence usually bring to mind the "Terminator" movies, where a super-intelligent AI turns evil and tries to destroy humanity. This month, the US Defense Department announced that it has indeed taken a major step toward regular use of artificial intelligence, but it's a far cry from the Terminator approach.

This December, the Pentagon revealed that it has completed its crash program to bring state-of-the-art artificial intelligence technology to America's military. Project Maven, which the DOD began funding in June, has operationally deployed its AI system to the fight against ISIS in the Middle East. This marks the first time that the military has fielded an advanced AI system using deep learning and neural networks. Its mission? Monitor the video feeds from tactical unmanned aerial vehicles -- better known as drones.

Project Maven's AI system, however, is nothing like the "Skynet" of the Terminator movies or even human intelligence. Project Maven's AI possesses only narrow intelligence, meaning it is smart at the task of monitoring drone surveillance videos and literally useless for doing anything else.

Read the full commentary in CNN.

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