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Patrick Tucker

Technology Editor 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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The Army Wants Robot Four-Wheelers and Decepticons

April 12, 2015 Nearly 10 years ago, the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency, or DARPA, showed that a self-driving car could navigate a 132-mile stretch of desert. That proof-of-concept test, DARPA Grand Challenge (2005), sought simply to illustrate how military resupply might be made less risky. (It also became the basis for Google’s...

Can the Military Make a Prediction Machine?

April 8, 2015 What could the military do if it could better understand the massive amounts of data that humanity creates, an estimated 2.5 quintillion bytes every day? Could it predict aspects of the future? If Pentagon funds can help create—even partially—a machine capable of understanding cause and effect, or causality, and do...

US Military to Deploy Robotic Ghost Ships This Fall

April 3, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow How do you keep track of increasingly stealthy Russian, Chinese, and Iranian submarines? If you're the U.S. military, you build a robotic ghost ship to follow them around the high seas. In 2010, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, announced that they were building a 132-foot autonomous boat...

Special Report: To Protect Ourselves From Bioweapons, We May Have to Reinvent Science Itself

April 2, 2015 In January 2012, a team of researchers from the Netherlands and the University of Wisconsin published a paper in the journal Science about airborne transmission of H5N1 influenza, or bird flu, in ferrets. The article changed the way the United States and nations around the world approached manmade biological threats....

Military's Ebola Vaccine Tests Appears to be Safe

April 2, 2015 An experimental Ebola vaccine appeared to be safe and effective in clinical trials, a U.S. Army research lab announced Wednesday. The vaccine worked fast and strong enough that an Army official from the lab said it could be deployed to future Ebola hotspots on short notice to quickly defuse outbreaks....

Military's Ebola Vaccine Tests Safe

April 1, 2015 An experimental Ebola vaccine appeared to be safe and effective in clinical trials, a U.S. Army research lab announced Wednesday. The vaccine worked fast and strong enough that an Army official from the lab said it could be deployed to future Ebola hotspots on short notice to quickly defuse outbreaks....

This Duck Drone Could Spy on Enemy Subs

April 1, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Nature, which has no need for devices that spy on enemy submarines from the air and underwater, may nevertheless have invented their form: flying fish, for example, or ducks that can zoom over the water’s surface and dive beneath to feed. But the Navy Research Lab, or NRL, which is...

Here’s When the Next Incursion Into Ukraine Could Happen

March 31, 2015 If you think the ceasefire between Ukraine and Russian-backed militants is fragile today, wait until next week. After Easter Sunday, pro-Moscow forces could begin a spring offensive lasting until (Russian) V-E Day, or May 9. That’s the prediction of retired Gen. Wesley Clark, former NATO supreme allied commander and U.S....

This Duck Drone Could Spy on Enemy Subs

March 30, 2015 Nature, which has no need for devices that spy on enemy submarines from the air and underwater, may nevertheless have invented their form: flying fish, for example, or ducks that can zoom over the water’s surface and dive beneath to feed. But the Navy Research Lab, or NRL, which is...

Pentagon: Yes, Taking Tikrit Just Got Harder

March 27, 2015 The departure of the Iranians from the battlefield of Tikrit will likely prolong ISIS’s presence around the city, say Pentagon officials. Today, Pentagon officials acknowledged that “hundreds of enemy” ISIS fighters remain around the besieged Iraqi city. When asked if the departure of the Iranian-backed Shi’ite militias would make it...