Army Tries Holograms, Quantum Computing, WoW - tech|
(hx) 09:30 PM CET - Nov,06 2008
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Dr. John Parmentola, Director of Research and Laboratory Management with the
Army's science and technology office,
told military bloggers Nov. 3 that the Army is "making science fiction into
reality" by creating realistic holographic images, generating virtual humans
and diving into quantum computing:
For the last several years, the Army has kept a close eye on research into areas of science that might have once been called "paranormal;" its practitioners drummed out of the academy as kooks and nut-jobs. But now the idea of implanting specific memories or erasing damaging ones, for example, isn't mere fantasy. Dr. Joe Tsien, a neurobiologist at the Medical College of Georgia and co-director of the Brain Discovery Institute, has been able to erase certain memories from mice subjected to traumatic experiences in a laboratory environment, Parmentola said. From a practical standpoint, the Army could use this kind of technology to help Soldiers who've been psychologically scarred by staring death straight in the eye. "You can imagine people who have horrifying memories, it would be great if we could eliminate them so this way they're not plagued by these memories uncontrollably," Parmentola said. "We have Soldiers that have this problem, like PTSD and traumatic brain injury, but there are many other examples that occur in the civilian world." The Army plans to highlight Tsien's and other research into the ragged edges of science fiction at the 26th Army Science Conference in Orlando next month, where experts in neurorobotics, high-tech computer displays and quantum physics will explain how Soldiers could benefit from the types of radical science most have only seen on episodes of the "X-Files."
Also, the U.S. Army may use MMO games like World of Warcraft as simulation training for new artificial intelligence that would see use in holographic soldiers for training:
To test out the computer generated humans' "humanity," Parmentola and his researchers want to unleash some of their cyber Soldiers into so-called "massively multi-player online games" such as "World of Warcraft" or "Eve Online" - games frequented by thousands of super-competitive human players in teams of virtual characters fighting battles that can last for days. "We want to use the massively multi-player online game as an experimental laboratory to see if they're good enough to convince humans that they're actually human," he said.