10 Cool DARPA Projects In Development - InformationWeek

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11/18/2013
09:06 AM
Elena Malykhina
Elena Malykhina
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10 Cool DARPA Projects In Development

These breakthrough technologies address a range of military challenges, from mental disorders to battlefield safety.
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Self-patching network defense system 
DARPA is getting closer to creating the mythical Skynet. In October, the agency announced the Cyber Grand Challenge for which teams will build fully automated network defense systems that compete against each other. The systems will evaluate software, test for vulnerabilities, create security patches, and apply them to protected computers on a network. Participants with expertise in reverse engineering, formal methods, and program analysis will go head-to-head in a final event in early to mid-2016, as they demonstrate their unmanned systems. The systems will have to automatically identify software flaws and scan the network to find affected hosts. The winning team will receive $2 million. 
(Source: DARPA)

Self-patching network defense system
DARPA is getting closer to creating the mythical Skynet. In October, the agency announced the Cyber Grand Challenge for which teams will build fully automated network defense systems that compete against each other. The systems will evaluate software, test for vulnerabilities, create security patches, and apply them to protected computers on a network. Participants with expertise in reverse engineering, formal methods, and program analysis will go head-to-head in a final event in early to mid-2016, as they demonstrate their unmanned systems. The systems will have to automatically identify software flaws and scan the network to find affected hosts. The winning team will receive $2 million.

(Source: DARPA)

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Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
11/19/2013 | 12:27:04 AM
Connecting to the central nervous system
I noticed a mention of advanced prosthetics and the brain-machine interface in this article, but what about mending the central nervous system after one of it's nerves, like the spinal cord, are severed? Doesn't it stand to reason that if a transducer can be attached to the brain, a similar device should be able to interface with either end of a severed spine? I remember reading about a mouse's severed spinal cord being repaired in an experiment, so it is obviously possible in a mammal.
dblake950
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dblake950,
User Rank: Strategist
11/18/2013 | 11:12:14 AM
Re: Short circuits
Jamescon, you're response is on the mark. it shouldn't be an either/or question. DARPA projects may be funded and aimed to address a particular defense issue, but the technology that evolves from these efforts often has wider implications: ARPAnet/Internet and GPS spring to mind.

Technology developed to address PTSD may have broader benefits for all manner of neurological/psychological medical treatments; and the fact remains that such costly experimental technolgy might never even be explored without agencies such as DARPA expending funds on them.
Jamescon
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Jamescon,
User Rank: Author
11/18/2013 | 10:33:56 AM
Re: Short circuits
Alex. I don't think that research should be funded at the expense of treatment programs for vets. There should be room for both, particularly where we can hope that the brain research might minimize the need for treatment down the road.
Alex Kane Rudansky
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Alex Kane Rudansky,
User Rank: Author
11/18/2013 | 10:10:58 AM
Re: Short circuits
While I think it's great the government is devoting resources to technology R+D for mental illnesses and disorders, I can't help but think some of that money would be better spent on recovery programs for vets with PTSD. Is technology the answer? Or social/recovery programs that provide mental health resources for vets?
Jamescon
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0%
Jamescon,
User Rank: Author
11/18/2013 | 9:47:58 AM
Short circuits
Anything that can be done to help returning warriors to overcome PTSD and other combat-related brain disorders is well worth the effort. Thanks for looking at these initiatives.
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