Machine warfare is the future. As for humans, our basic instinctual ability to connect with others and inspire action will and always has been the future. But, the ‘shock and awe’ portion of warfare – machines will execute. Machines have been at the heart of science fiction and futurism for as long as I can remember. The first and easiest step might be automatic flight and driving. Autonomous flights have already taken off – and vehicles may be close behind. Machines are on the rise.

Why do we need reconnaissance patrols when small cars with big cameras and seismic monitoring technology could encircle the camp. In fact, these little ground-based drones/vehicles could communicate. They’d use wifi and swarming technology. They’d move toward seismic activity and act as terrain denial. They could even serve as a blockade or explode over IEDs they find. Like the Navy’s new LOCUST program, but on the ground.

North Korea and Israel are riddled with tunnels. While Asymmetric Warfare Group figures out the infantry doctrine to enter and clear the tunnels – machines could just do it.

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The Department of Transportation Intelligent Transportation Systems Joint Program Office is working on the policy and coordination of automated transportation. It’s a reality, and many aren’t taking a hard look at its use in war and security, yet. This may be an area where the DOT and the DOD will have work together. The future of convoys isn’t highly trained drivers; it’s machined. But, are we there yet? Yes, we have drones, and we have pieces of equipment that are sophisticated and useful. However, can we envelop these technologies into our existing architecture? No.

Intelligent transportation is coming fast and furious. For the most part, it’s here but is not thoroughly vetted as cyber safe for use. Artificial intelligence and broad strokes are good to go.

The Blue Force Tracker won’t need a human component in the future – because the machines will communicate with one another. On the flip-side, the enemy might be able to control the machines and cyber security is a huge concern. Cyber security is something we’re struggling with as a nation already. We need a serious overhaul in our technological architecture to allow for more intuitive and intelligent systems to be implemented. These solutions need to be enacted before automatic machines rule convoys and aspects of operations because there will be no centrality.

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