AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Patrick Tucker

Patrick Tucker is technology editor for Defense One. He’s also the author of The Naked Future: What Happens in a World That Anticipates Your Every Move? (Current, 2014). Previously, Tucker was deputy editor for The Futurist for nine years. Tucker has written about emerging technology in Slate, The Sun, MIT Technology Review, Wilson Quarterly, The American Legion Magazine, BBC News Magazine, Utne Reader, and elsewhere.
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How the Fukushima Disaster Is Changing the Future of Robotics

June 27, 2014 Next June, several robotics teams will converge on a testing ground at the Fairplex facility in Pomona, California, to compete in the American Idol of robot contests, the DARPA Robotics Challenge finals. It’s a massive effort to rapidly advance the field of search and rescue machines and owes much of...

The Military Is About to Get New Spy Glasses

June 25, 2014 Getting secret information to specific people, like the location of the nearest nuclear power plant, in a way that doesn’t draw attention from outside is a classic spy problem. Another one is giving agents the ability to match names to faces in the real world, at blackjack tables and fancy...

The Military Now Has X-Ray Guns

June 22, 2014 Superman had X-ray vision. Now, so does the United States military, in the form of an X-ray gun that can see through fabric, rubber and aluminum to find drugs, money, explosive liquids and even people. The recently released X-ray gun is the first device of its kind that a soldier...

The Government Probably Has More Photos of You Than of ISIL's Leader

June 19, 2014 In 2005, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the man today considered the leader of the Islamic State of Syria in the Levant, or ISIL, fell into the custody of United States forces in Iraq. A U.S. soldier subjected him to a finger and iris scan using the Biometrics Automated Toolsets System or...

The Pros and Cons of U.S. Drone Strikes in Iraq

June 13, 2014 On Friday, President Barack Obama ruled out sending U.S. troops back into Iraq to fight the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, or ISIS, fighters as they take over large areas of the country. He did leave the door open to a set of nebulously named “other options.” What form...

How the Pentagon Can Track the Taliban 5

June 11, 2014 Critics on Capitol Hill and across the country have called the swap of five Taliban prisoners for one American soldier a bad bargain. The alleged terrorist leaders released from Guantanamo Bay (first to Qatar but eventually back to Afghanistan) could disappear back into the fight and kill American forces and...

Snowden’s Legislative Legacy: A Bill That No One Likes

June 6, 2014 A year after Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald launched Edward Snowden into the annals of history, the most significant change in law to result from the leaks may be a bill that actually weakens consumer privacy while hurting intelligence gathering for national security. Lawmakers on Thursday held an open hearing on...

This Is What the Future of Manned Space Flight Looks Like

May 30, 2014 The future called from California on Thursday night and wants its spaceship back. Billionaire, inventor and Silicon Valley superstar Elon Musk appeared before an audience of cheering fans and a lot of cameras to debut the newest version of his Dragon space craft, a sleek and modern-looking capsule dubbed Dragon...

The Military Is Building Brain Chips to Treat PTSD

May 28, 2014 How well can you predict your next mood swing? How well can anyone? It’s an existential dilemma for many of us but for the military, the ability to treat anxiety, depression, memory loss and the symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder has become one of the most important battles of...

Putin to Ukraine: We Will Accept the Legitimacy of Your Illegitimate Election

May 23, 2014 Russia will accept the legitimacy of Sunday’s presidential election in Ukraine, Vladimir Putin said in a CNBC interview on Friday. “I’m not kidding and I’m not being ironic,” Putin assured CNBC correspondent Geoff Cutmore. “What we want for Ukraine is peace and calm. We want this country to recover from...