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Toys United States

Department of Defense Gadget Show 183

blackp writes "DefenseLINK has an article about Force Protection Equipment Demonstration IV. This year they had over 2,600 gadget and equipment for defense and government agencies. The list includes kevlar suits, body heat camo, a RoBoCop Suit, even biometric identification. Some pictures are available, although somewhat limited. This show seems perfect for the geek with a big budget." Or the government with a big budget. Still, some neat things on display.
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Department of Defense Gadget Show

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  • by ringbarer ( 545020 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:14PM (#6072388) Homepage Journal
    Does that mean the first one will be really good, but the second and third one would be shit?

    Fist Sport!
    • by Michael's a Jerk! ( 668185 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:53PM (#6072634) Homepage Journal
      Naturally, you'd get it from Villian Supply [].
    • Re:A Robocop Suit? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by astro ( 20275 )
      You know, Frank Miller (Ronin, Sin City, Give Me Liberty, numerous other graphic / comic masterpieces) wrote the screenplays for RoboCop II and III (see here []) - you might give them another look. I wonder if you are falling into the unquestioned sequels == bad trap... I thought the whole RC series (so far!) was great, and I am fully looking forward to the Robocop comic mini-series [] due this summer.

      Even the (late eighties / early nineties?) Robocop TV show had its moments - look closely and you could see Subg
      • Re:A Robocop Suit? (Score:2, Interesting)

        by ringbarer ( 545020 )
        There's a difference between comics and movies. If you took your tongue out of Miller's ringpiece for a moment you'd realise that the two apocryphal movies were poorly scripted abominations, designed to pander to the 'whizz bang explosion' audience instead of being a metaphor for the "American Jesus".

        The original Robocop movie was a work of art, the others being toy commercials. So please, grow the FUCK up.

        To follow on, the mid 90's TV series had one or two good moments, but was weighed down by the 'an
  • Well... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by cageyjames ( 642932 )
    Got to spend money to make it. Go to the moon or expensive toilet seats... All the same... Generates jobs.
    • Re:Well... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by AndroidCat ( 229562 )
      expensive toilet seats

      Every time someone wants to get a news-op, they drag out how much it costs for something that you could buy at the local hardware store for much less.

      Guess what? Your local hardware stores probably aren't ISO-900x compliant. Their suppliers probably aren't. If some unauthorized cheap toilet seat pinches a general's butt, no one will be able to track back the supply and manufacturing trail to 2002/03/01, the 3rd shift, line 2 of PlastiButtCo, employee Al Kali.

      The price is expensive,

  • not quite robo cop (Score:4, Insightful)

    by killthiskid ( 197397 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:18PM (#6072416) Homepage Journal
    Eugene Hudson, chairman of DoD's physical security equipment action group, said because of continuing concern of terrorism, the focus of the demonstration was to give government and civilian officials a firsthand look at readily available technology to meet their force protection needs.

    Damn, I thought, a RoboCop suit already! Wow! Then I read:

    For example, one company, Med-Eng Systems, Inc., showed off its "RoBoCop"-like suit made of thick layers of Kevlar for protection against heat, flames, blast fragmentation and impact. It weighs about 40 pounds and comes with a special undergarment, boots and gloves to protect wearers against chemical, biological and radiological exposure.

    Ugh... yeah. That's cool. Damn impressive even... but ROBOCOP?!? These guys obviously didn't watch the movie... :-)

  • Did anyone else see that MATILDA robot and think of it as only a slightly more advanced Dobie-O-Matic?
    • Re:MATILDA (Score:3, Funny)

      by Achoi77 ( 669484 )
      Actaully I was thinking that it was looked like Johnny 5's evil, big badass brother. Too bad it doesn't have a laser with that cool Knight Rider style light that moves back and forth.

      Those 80's movies were ahead of it's time!!

    • It looks exactly like wire drawn models of WWI. This one's got it's own motive force a camera and better fire crackers. What more can you ask for? You want it to hover or something?
  • I am been completely disappointed with DARPA's neglect of language learning lately. And people ask why we don't get better intelligence.

    This year's one day seminar on Integrating Speech Technology in Language Learning has been cancelled []. The InSTIL seminar was all that had been left of what was once a funded U.S. research program to use speech recognition to help people learn [] to read []. However, over the past few years the budget of the Interagency Educational Research Initiative has been slashed and the Learning Anytime Anywhere Partnership program has been ZEROED []. The IERI and LAAP programs were created to deal with DARPA funding deficencies [], but DARPA has not taken up the slack for speech recognition in language instruction []. Fewer U.S. polyglots will have a far greater impact on intelligence-gathering efforts than bandaids like Project Babylon or any of the DARPA advanced speech recognition programs [] can possibly provide. Please join me in asking John Poindexter and his [] advisory board [] and NIST [] to help get this vital funding back in the budget.

    Also, the Linguistic Data Consortium sent their catalog update out yesterday. As usual, there are no new corpi of people attempting to read a language as they are acquiring it, at any age.

  • paging mister gates, blue light special...
  • Now, this [] truely shows off technology at its best. I mean where the hell are its bionic limbs, or it's thermal imaging, or even it's fricking lasers. Its a goddamn gormless bloke being led by a dog. Pathetic.
    • Don't you see. That's the beauty of the GEEZER-2K3 system: It looks like a harmless old man walking his dog. But when it comes time for the application of deadly force, this system has it all. Petawatt lasers, High explosives, Flame throwers, all built into the 1.76m exoskeleton. Designed for uban deployment, the GEEZER-2K3 can carry out surveillance, pacify crowds, and destroy enemy bunkers.

      When it comes to weapons, remember our motto: "Peace, through superior firepower."
  • New? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jade42 ( 608565 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:22PM (#6072452) Journal
    Is it just me or does it seem like the same technology year after year. It gets refined a bit but I don't think that we get the fruits of any new ideas.
    • Re:New? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by qortra ( 591818 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:31PM (#6072508)
      I think you're right; every one of the technologies that I've seen mentioned already exists (and is even in use today). However, I think we are pretty close to a breakthrough in many of these areas; as a few fringe technologies mature, I think we'll begin to see totaly new gadgets. The thing is, law enforcement agents, soldiers, etc. can't be counting on untried, untested technology, so I'm sure that manufacturers cater to a far more conversative crowd.

      If you want new exciting technologies, this is probably not the place to look.
      • by kikta ( 200092 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @11:01PM (#6073367)
        ...I know because I've gone to it before. I went while I was stationed at Quantico. They hold every year at the airfield (home to HMX-1, the President's helo pilots and the only experimental helo squadron in the Marine Corps, thus the "X" in their name).

        To understand the purpose of the show, you need a little context about what happens at Quantico. It's the home to all Marine Corps doctrine, experimentation, and development. Yes, those may be done in other places, but the commands that control them are all in Quantico. It is also home to the FBI and DEA Academies. Many of the other services have similar setups around the D.C. area. So, Quantico is the ideal location for this sort of thing.

        The show's purpose is to let the people who make R&D and purchasing decisions to see what's coming down the pipeline from various companies. Some are things that companies would like to see the military or law enforcement test (and eventually adopt) others are things that are in the military pipeline for deployment and are being showcased. The show let someone see a new product and decide that it is something they'd like to test. They can then acquire some, give them a whirl, and recommend the product if they like it. It also lets you see what's crap. I remeber a Tawainese company that was making a futuristic rifle and had it at the show. The thing looked freaking awesome, until you picked it up. It was heavy as hell & shoddily made ("Should the upper reciever be rattling on this thing?" "Ah yes - that is because our rifle is so flexible!").

        In many ways it's very much like a computer trade show. You wander around & hear the sales pitch, try things out, and get lots of free crap. Except instead of getting a hard-on looking at IBM's newest server line, you get the hard-on playing with H&K's newest sidearm.
    • I don't think that we get the fruits of any new ideas.

      You don't have kevlar undies yet? Huevos on teflon, it's all the rage.

  • by jkauzlar ( 596349 ) * on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:23PM (#6072460) Homepage
    Here's some of the fascinating new crime-stoppers they will be displaying at the show. This new firearm [] was invented in alternative to stun or pellet guns, to scare the perp rather than killing or injuring them.

    This [] one was invented catch white-collar criminals off-gaurd.

    Very interesting stuff. Check it out!

  • by heli0 ( 659560 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:25PM (#6072475)
    Here is the official site [] for the event.

    Check out the power point presentation:


    Pigeons will be available on a first come first served basis in the Hangers.

    Plastic sheeting will be available to vendors in the hanger areas.

    Shooting of pigeons, even with non-lethal weapons, is not allowed.

    and of course...

    Marines at the FPED are not an on-site Labor Force. Attempting to use them as such is at your own risk

  • Whew (Score:5, Informative)

    by Jade E. 2 ( 313290 ) <slashdot.perlstorm@net> on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:27PM (#6072484) Homepage
    I wonder if I'm the only one who read 'RoBoCop Suit' (what's with the capitalization there?) and thought "Oh, no, they beat me to it!"

    Luckily they're just misusing the term to refer to a bomb squad blast armor that's also a biological/chemical suit. Nothing really new, just the combination of two old technologies.

    Now, when they take that same suit, add in hydraulic strength multipliers and an advanced HUD, I'll be worried. Unless I get there first.

    • Re:Whew (Score:5, Funny)

      by AndroidCat ( 229562 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:32PM (#6072512) Homepage
      One thing they probably didn't add is air-conditioning. 40 lbs of sealed suit and other stuff as well? That's not "RoBoCop", that's "OverclockedCop" -- they need a case-mod.
      • That's not "RoBoCop", that's "OverclockedCop" -- they need a case-mod.

        Just leave the case open.

      • All joking aside for a moment, I'd just like to say that I do admire and respect the people who do put on such gear to perform their duties.

        My sense tends towards the practical, and my humour, a bit dark. My immediate reaction was "They're wearing 40 lbs of sealed armour, they're facing something that may explode in their face, and they've got to be cautious and patient with it, but time is of the essence" My joke about Depends was relevant, I'd be facing a brown-trowsers event if was me.

        A stalute to them

  • Unfair? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ObviousGuy ( 578567 )
    Back in the 'good old days' of warfare, either side was equally equipped to take on the other. This resulted in long, bloody wars that finally ended when either of the sides was exhausted and horrified at the death and destruction. Following these wars (from the Punic to the American Civil War) a long period of peace followed until the horrors of war were forgotten and the fools in power became ambitious. This type of peace is sometimes called "balance of power" because both sides are deterred from battl
    • Re:Unfair? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by GMontag ( 42283 ) <gmontag@[ ] ['guy' in gap]> on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:46PM (#6072597) Homepage Journal
      You have apparently missed Rule 1 of warfare:

      There is no such thing as a fair fight.

      Well, you missed Rule 2 also:

      Don't bring a knife to a gunfight.

      Well, maybe Rule 3 also:

      If the enemy is in shooting range you are too.
      (modified by asymetric Artillery advantages and close air support)

      Well, Rule 4 too . . .
      • Don't bring a knife to a gunfight

        Always, always, bring the knife! You are not limitted to one weapon. Check out modern grunts. Lightweight assault weapons with hundreds of rounds of ammo, body armor, night vision, etc. and they still carry a knife. Why? As explained to many a grunt: "it is the most reliable weapon you will carry, zero moving parts, zero electronics". :-)
      • Re:Unfair? (Score:5, Funny)

        by Elwood P Dowd ( 16933 ) <> on Thursday May 29, 2003 @10:22PM (#6073169) Journal
        Never get involved in a land war in Asia? Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line?
  • by Tumbleweed ( 3706 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:34PM (#6072532) an ED-209. Sure it has a little problem with stairs, but I'm confident they'll lick that in the next revision. Plus it's got enough firepower to blast a RoboCop into itty bitty pieces! :)

    "What about Kenny?"
    *shrug* "That's life in the big city."
    • I always liked ED 209 much better than stupid Robocop. I especially like its attitude toward parking violators. I think one or two in each metropolitan area would do far greater good than an army of Robocops.
  • Pictures (Score:5, Funny)

    by limekiller4 ( 451497 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:35PM (#6072534) Homepage
    CowboyNeal writes:
    "Some pictures are available, although somewhat limited..."

    You could say that. There is one picture of a treaded robot/tank [], a picture of a girl with a standard ATM-ish card reader [] and finally, to really show off the state-of-the-art, a picture of a guy with a dog [].
    • a picture of a

      There's a jewelry-store chain in Las Vegas that uses those as timeclocks...a company for which I used to work sold them. The company that builds them [] even pitches their use for such a mundane role.

    • It's not a real dog. It's a robotic dog. And it's smarter than I am - not that that's saying much. Also, it's loaded with weapons; it can destroy a city just by lifting it's leg.
    • That would be a hand scanner, not a card reader. You punch in a code, stick the hand in, and hope that it recognizes the palmprint of the guard you chopped the hand off of...

      err, I mean.. uh...

      my, look at the time, must be going...
      • That is indeed a hand scanner. We've got those at the entries to my apartment building, actually. They seem to work pretty well - though I really have no idea what it looks at. It's not palmprint, because it does the scanning on the top of your hand. Something to do with finger lengths or something.

        They suck in certain ways though: For one, if you don't have a right hand you're screwed. This has actually been an issue here, there's some guy with his right forearm amputated. I duno what they came up

  • by GMontag ( 42283 ) <gmontag@[ ] ['guy' in gap]> on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:37PM (#6072544) Homepage Journal
    2,600 gadgets []? I didn't know there were that many new boxes, phone phreak tools and kiddie scripts out there! I need to get back on IRC and USENET to see what I am missing :(
  • RoboCop (Score:3, Funny)

    by bongobongo ( 608275 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:37PM (#6072545)
    [quote]For example, one company, Med-Eng Systems, Inc., showed off its "RoBoCop"-like suit made of thick layers of Kevlar for protection against heat, flames, blast fragmentation and impact. It weighs about 40 pounds and comes with a special undergarment, boots and gloves to protect wearers against chemical, biological and radiological exposure.

    "It's an all-in-one," said Danny Crossman, product line manager for blast systems, explained. And another company representative, technical adviser Ray James, added, "It's the only bomb suit in the world that integrates adequate protection against a explosive device with biological and chemical protection." [/quote]

    how can they call it a RoboCop suit with a clear conscience, given that this thing kicks absolutely NO ass? far as i can tell it's just really good at taking abuse

    RoboSufferer jacket... RoboMartyr overcoat maybe.
  • by nickgrieve ( 87668 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:42PM (#6072568) Journal
    FFS guys, your .mil just took over an entire contry in a month... do you realy think it needs more power?
    • Yup...Thirty minutes or less. Or your money back!
    • Can we get that down to under 4 hours it would make the news people happy with a nice 7 - 11 primetime special.

      But yes you allways want to have more power but more importantly better power with larger force multipliers and lower maitnence costs thats more and more versitile. It's not a question of how dead do you want them anymore politicians are driving to more and more surgical less collateral damage so they have less political fallout. Allways remember the military is the ultimate tool for diplomacy w
    • by Peyna ( 14792 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @09:36PM (#6072892) Homepage
      Iraq in 1 month, but when we invade France we'll need more power to get it done faster.
      • Dude, once we own the middle east, we are going to buy France or at least those services we want. It's not worth much if we have to flatten it and we sure don't need the administrative hastle of owning them.
      • No we won't (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        The Iraqis actually resisted.
  • Isn't it sad? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by spoco2 ( 322835 )
    That so many technological improvements are pushed by the 'defence' industry to come up with new and exciting ways to kill people...
    Oh to live in a world where the prime driving force for innovation is a desire to improve living conditions, feed more people, educate the masses rather than killing them.

    • Re:Isn't it sad? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by dvk ( 118711 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @09:12PM (#6072757) Homepage
      Oh, yeah... a perfect world with no weapons... and then the first wacko who enjoys destroying and hurting people (and those always get born, it's human nature) goes around and due to total defenselessness of the rest of the environment, at best hurts a LOT of people, or at worst, if he's power hungry, takes over. Oh, and since you can't ban sticks and stones, then if he is physically stronger, he would have the sme advantage over the rest of the people as any armed human over less armed one. GREAT. Scratch that attempt at utopia.

      See, humans come in all forms and shapes. Some are born power hungry. Some evil. Some both. Unless you are protected from them, you are the next victim.
      The only difference between "pacifists" and "peace-loving people", and those who are "warmongering" and "hawkish", is that the latter are ready to protect themselves and their society from those who would attack it.
      The former come in two categories - those who simply don't get the real world and think everyone else is 100% peaceful and harmless as a daisy, and those who aren't that naive, but are cynical enough to let the "hawkish" to protect them and their family while acting all nice and dovish and "better than the warmongers".

      • Ahhh, but I didn't say completely get rid of defence did I? Nup. What saddens me is that so much money is spent on it... Now what are the main reasons for the need for defence? Leaders deciding they should invade other countries, impoverished nations being taken advantage of by the rich and violent, Holy crusades against those not of the same beliefs...

        How about, let's say... 1/2 of their current budget is spent on some worthwhile things, like... feeding those who are starving, educating those who have n
        • by DNS-and-BIND ( 461968 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @09:47PM (#6072961) Homepage
          The U.S. spends a fraction of its budget on defense. The U.S. spends more than half the budget on Social Security and Medicare, which are "feeding people" by your definition.

          Funny how nobody ever brings up China or the Soviet Union in these discussions. Or Cuba, which doesn't even need a defense force. These nations routinely spent 40% or more of their entire economies on defense spending, and let their people starve as a result. Oh, but the U.S. spends 4%, and we need to cut it in order to nourish people who hate us. That's just peachy.

          • They spend half of their Defence budget on Social Security and Medicare? I think not... the figures I was quoting are Defense budget figures, not Overall Budget figures.
          • iirc the US defence budget is bigger than France, China and Russia's all combined - now think about the proportion of that!

            This is going off-topic now, but look at this -
            WMD just a convenient excuse for war, admits Wolfowitz

            And that's the same guy who came up with the "One Superpower" speech that almost got him fired. What about the American soldiers this guy sent away to be killed to fullfill his own hidden agendas? Don't Americans feel like they have been played for fools?

            Also - []
            US finds evidence o
          • Ok... you say that defence budget is but a fraction of the budget (even though I was talking about Defence exependiture exclusively).

            Let's see what kind of percentage of the USA's total budget is spent on defence...
            revenues: $1.828 trillion
            expenditures: $1.703 trillion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1999) (source) []

            So, taking the previously mentioned $379 Billion... that's 22% of the State's total budget, including capital expenditures, spent on the defence force!

            That's ridiculou

            • Defense budgets are calculated as a percentage of GDP (GNP). Most European countries are at 1-3%. The U.S. is at around 4%. Nice try with the misleading statistics.

              And still nobody says anything about China. It's not OK for the U.S., but OK for the Chinese to starve? How racist.

              • Awwww Crap... I wrote a long thing about how I didn't mention China because they don't trump themselves as the bastion of all that's good in the world... but for some reason it didn't post...


                I'm not typing all that again... I'm supposed to be working. :(
          • The US spends more than thirty three times as much [] on defense as its top seven potential enemies combined.
            • Misleading statistic. Defense expenditures are measured in percentage of GDP.

              And the U.S. is outspending the competition? GOOD. That's how you successfully defend yourself.

              • Outspending the competition by a ratio like that is not about successful defense. And it's absolutely criminal when you take into account that it represents money taken away from things we need desperately like education and economic development. And please don't whine about this being "socialist" when defending the most massive government spending project in human history.
              • Simply outspending your competition does not win any wars.

                About a zillion f*cked companies have proven that while spending a lot of money makes you look like you're growing, and fools people into buying your stock - - but only for a while.

                The WAY that America spends it's defense dollar is simply insane. Allowing defense contractors to consolidate until there are one or two left, and simply alternating big contracts to make sure that two competitors remain in the feild does NOT guarantee that competition
        • by AHumbleOpinion ( 546848 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @10:05PM (#6073075) Homepage
          so... let's see... if we have HALF of the current US defence budget to spend on feeding people... we could feed... let's see... 4.056 BILLION people...

          You mean well, but are naive. We can feed them now, but what about in the decades to come when these 'saved' people have children and so on. Or will the food come with strings attached that require population control and cultural changes? Or will it just be laced with contraceptives? Your proposed solution merely delays things; it sets the stage for an even greater human catastrophe in the not-so-distant future.

          Get over the idea that throwing money at a problem will solve it. That's failed many times. Hunger will be with us until people's behaviors and attitudes change (zero or negative population growth in some 'western' nations). Or until people live under repressive regimes that force change (China).
          • So how is throwing so much money at Defence supposed to be a good idea then?

            I was only using the 'feeding' people as an example... I'm actually more for educating people moreso than feeding them really... as a more highly educated populous is more able to improve their own standard of living and are less likely to be violent to themselves or others.

            Plus, you also forget that this kind of expenditure isn't a 'one off' thing... the US spends this EVERY year on their defence... now the US isn't the only coun
            • So how is throwing so much money at Defence supposed to be a good idea then?

              1. My safety and freedom is greatly enhanced by doing so.

              2. Dual use technologies. Microwave ovens (WW II radar), the Internet (Cold War DARPA), etc. It's like the space program, it spurs practical basic science. Not every dollar of course, but enough that an honest evaluation has to factor this in.

              3 ... N. I doubt a longer list would be change additional opinions.

              ... as a more highly educated populous is more able to im
              • Afghanistan and Iraq are results of 9/11.

                Sorry, I'm not trying to lash back at you or anything... but watching the US government try and say that Iraq is due to 9/11 is laughable to say the least... It's purely in the interest of the government trying to deflect important local social issue by focussing everyone's attention on an external war effort.

                Afghanistan? Ok... directly because of 9/11, yes... but what did they go in there to do? Get Bin Laden... did they get him? Well... umm... maybe... or maybe

                • I suggest you consider the reality that propoganda exists on both sides, some of your comments suggest you are deeply into it. Think a little more critically rather than blindly assuming 'Bush' equals 'wrong' and assuming that the first warm fuzzy caring action that comes to mind is the correct action. Things are far more complicated than you think.

                  Afghanistan and Iraq are results of 9/11 in that the attack forced the US into a more agressive posture. The basic idea being you take the war to the enemy, not
                  • Sorry, I'm really dragging this out, and I won't write much... you pose some interesting points, and I did give a rather over simplified view of the state of play... but I don't reneg on what I said... the US is pushing one set of propoganda, and I'm just amazed that it's being so happily accepted by the majority of the populous.

                    The thing that makes me saddest though is the whole 'Threat Level' stuff that is being pushed at the moment, with 'Elevated' being your current state. It's scarily reminiscent of

                    • As a child of the cold war I was quite familiar with the threat of nuclear war and the MAD policy. Our left-wing teachers thought it an expecially important subject once Reagan was elected. My parents did the duck and cover thing but it was passe by the time I was in school. We did have similarly useful earthquake drills. Duck and cover may seem rediculous immediately after viewing nuclear test footage where a building is obliterated but that is the intent of such "propoganda". In reality it was a reasonabl
      • My father was in New Zealand in the 70s while in the Navy. (No guns in New Zealand). He said the papers always had reports of people knifing each other to death.

        Take away all of our weapons and we'll still have our bare hands. If we want to hurt somebody bad enough we will.
      • Re:Isn't it sad? (Score:3, Insightful)

        by GlassHeart ( 579618 )
        The only difference between "pacifists" and "peace-loving people", and those who are "warmongering" and "hawkish", is that the latter are ready to protect themselves and their society from those who would attack it.

        There are also "doves" who are willing and able to use force if sufficiently threatened. Likewise, there are "hawks" who will back down and run away if you stand up to them.

        [Pacifists] come in two categories - those who simply don't get the real world and think everyone else is 100% peaceful

      • The only difference between "pacifists" and "peace-loving people", and those who are "warmongering" and "hawkish", is that the latter are ready to protect themselves and their society from those who would attack it.
        The former come in two categories - those who simply don't get the real world and think everyone else is 100% peaceful and harmless as a daisy, and those who aren't that naive, but are cynical enough to let the "hawkish" to protect them and their family while acting all nice and dovish and "bett

  • by AndroidCat ( 229562 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @08:47PM (#6072599) Homepage
    Those on display included MATILDA, built by Mesa Associates, which uses a robotic arm to investigate and detonate suspected bombs and packages.

    Couldn't they just mod an AIBO to do that job? Especially for the Bunker Buster job: Strap some C4 to it, "Woof! Woof! Time to die.. BOOM!" (Okay, I'm joking about the AIBO, but haven't we seen oodles of home robot Slashdot articles in the last couple of months that could probably do the job for less, and be controlled by a cell phone?)

  • From the article:
    "Not every force protection device was mechanical, computerized or high tech at Force Protection Equipment Demonstration IV at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., in early May. Buddy Eanes with Ace, his bomb-sniffing dog, also took part in the demonstrations."

    Damn! And I thought that having a dog that constantly sniffed at your crotch was inconvenient...

  • From the story, in the section on sandbags:
    Al Arellanes ... said, "can be used for flood-fighting, terrorist activities or any type of security situation."

    Is he supplying terrorists with advanced weapons of mass sandbagging?

  • Was there (Score:5, Informative)

    by Darth Maul ( 19860 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @09:08PM (#6072733) Homepage
    My company was there this year and a couple years ago (we do risk management software []). The show is quite interesting because it's a good mix of technologies, from Jersey barriers to bullet-proof glass to software. It's also not just a cheesy trade show, but some serious display by both commercial companies and Gov't agencies. The site for the show is here [].

    The coolest technology was a compressed-air powered bullet for training. Police and military can use their service weapons to basically play paintball. It's nice because the feel of the weapon is exactly what it would be in real-life situations instead of them having to use a fake training weapon with different characteristics.
    • Re:Was there (Score:3, Interesting)

      by refactored ( 260886 )
      I would strip search and check my opponents weapons and clips for real ammo _twice_ before I took part in any such game.

      Like my brother, he was in a training maneuver where the officers said that they would come under fire from guys using blanks.

      The fact that there are no such thing as "blank tracers" lent their feet wings and it was several hours before the brain dead @#$#! ossifers could find them all again..

  • Take one of these [] to Battlebots and you're sure to win. :-)
  • by pyrrho ( 167252 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @09:18PM (#6072799) Journal
    ... after you attend, they have to kill you.
  • by labratuk ( 204918 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @09:26PM (#6072839)
    Considering the U.S.'s behaviour, don't you think the so called Department of "Defense" should consider a name change?
  • ...from Raytheon's Stinger page: []

    The Stinger Family of Weapon Systems is combat-proven, fire-and-forget, lethal, lightweight, and multimission. That's the "Stinger Advantage."

    I wonder if this trade show has booth babes...
  • by Mr. White ( 22990 ) on Thursday May 29, 2003 @10:15PM (#6073130) Homepage Journal
    ... who's annoyed that we hear about this a month after the event, and not a week before so that we could actually make plans to attend?

  • In deus ex we see thermoptic camo and sophisticated robots. In the force protection equipment demonstration we see thermoptic camo and sophisticated robots. Maybe not the political/social situation but the technology is sure coming closer... And I sure as hell am gonna grab one of those big bots and ride it around everywhere. Do YOU wanna mess?

Man is an animal that makes bargains: no other animal does this-- no dog exchanges bones with another. -- Adam Smith