“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” This was Sun Tzu back in the 5th century BC. This quote is true to this day though, and our efforts to subdue the enemy are now based on fear. We have developed technologies and weapons to such an extent that they actually can destroy whole cities in the blink of an eye, often using hypersonic weapons. This also means that we’ve developed technologies and weapons to prevent such things from happening in the first place. Here, we will look at some existing and developing technologies to see just how far warfare has come with the improvement in technology.
Role of AR, VR and MR in Warfare
For everyone who watched “Men Against Fire”, an episode of Black Mirror which showed an army of people being forced to commit genocide against a minority group because of implants which made the people of the minority look like monsters (using augmented reality), the idea of technology in warfare seems terrible. In reality, that particular idea was obviously a little farfetched. But still, AR and VR are being used for military training because of the safety associated with them, these technologies also save money that would’ve otherwise been spent on bullets and other equipment. This effectively helps save lives in the training period but it also means that the soldiers don’t get to train as hard. Obviously in these training programs, AI is also used to provide a better experience every time, this would make the course progressively tougher.
AI and it’s growing usage in military technologies
AI is big in military technologies. It is used almost everywhere from cybersecurity to target recognition. AI’s capabilities are really being exploited by the military. AI is used in battlefield healthcare, combat simulation (as mentioned above), threat monitoring, facial recognition, and logistics & transportation too. Drones are obviously included and they overlap in two or more of the mentioned fields. The possibilities are endless with AI.
Apart from the usual heard-of technologies, we’re also getting to see the exoskeleton being developed to increase strength, self-steering bullets, graphene armor, special tanks which will be virtually invincible because they’ll be made of composite metal foams, non-line of sight missiles which can go virtually anywhere (provided that the sky above the target is mostly open). One of the freakiest things that is being developed is a killer drone which can create fog to reduce visibility during a fight so that it can kill the soldiers with its own heat vision.
The most basic conclusion that can be reached is the fact that there will be fewer soldiers fighting on the ground in the future, as seen by the trends of the US Military. Surprisingly, the Chinese military seems to be showing an increase in soldiers. No matter what happens, there need to be international laws about using certain technologies in military equipment and certain technologies should be off limits and shouldn’t be inducted by the military.
(The article is authored by Nishant Nijhawan, Intern, Techxty.com. Nishant is a student of computer engineering at Delhi Technical University who believes in optimal usage of technology.)