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Stealth Sharks to Patrol the High Seas 331

dylanduck writes ""Imagine getting inside the mind of a shark: swimming silently through the ocean, sensing faint electrical fields, homing in on the trace of a scent." That's what the Pentagon wants to do, says New Scientist. By remotely guiding the sharks' movements using a newly designed neural implant, the military hope to transform the animals into stealth spies."
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Stealth Sharks to Patrol the High Seas

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  • Re:Wonderful (Score:2, Interesting)

    by 4e617474 ( 945414 ) on Thursday March 02, 2006 @01:28AM (#14832871)
    Ah, man:

    As opposed to the numerous other species you've known that make weighty moral decisions as they ponder their place in the world? Animals kept by humans experience a huge range of living conditions from the luxurious to the truly dreadful. Animals that people use for military purposes throughout histor have been by and large kept very, very well for a time than thrown into chaotic situations where they face dismemberment and death. The big change from living in the wild is the first part of that equation, not the second.
    I'll grant you that taking animals and vivisecting them because you need to look busy when you're grant's up for renewal is sick and wrong, but don't talk about how humans compare to animals as if turning the world over to the hyenas would bring about a Utopia.
  • by johnMG ( 648562 ) on Thursday March 02, 2006 @02:46AM (#14833095)

    I guess it's just beyond most human beings intellectual capacity to just get a fucking clue. This ranks right up there with the rest of the dumb fucking things our military does with innocent animals.

    It's not *just* that people are dumb. They are. But they also don't *want* to know what they do to animals (or causes others to do to animals on their behalf).

    For example, offer to show someone a short video of what goes on in an abattoir. Almost guaranteed they will refuse. Tell them you don't think eating meat is wrong -- you just want them to see what goes on for them to be able to eat that McBurger. See if they'd be willing (not even "curious", just *willing*) to see how the fowl are slaughtered. They won't do it -- they will almost always prefer ignorance, and they'll probably also get mad at you for "trying to ruin their day".

  • next up... humans (Score:3, Interesting)

    by humina ( 603463 ) on Thursday March 02, 2006 @07:13AM (#14833640)
    I am familiar with this research project and turned down an opportunity to have worked on it. The thing is the pentagon wants to develop these shark brain implants so that they could one day be used in humans. Congress shut down the BMI section of darpa (brain machine Interface). It got renamed to something fluffy like neural interfaces research group. The whole purpose of it is to be able to implant a device in someones brain so that the pentagon can read a signal on what they are thinking. I would rather work for NIH on a brain implant to help restore neural activity for the disabled instead of making tools for war.
  • by svelgen ( 958437 ) on Thursday March 02, 2006 @12:38PM (#14835395)
    Further stats from a recent Economist article. The US is up to 16% of
    its GDP spent on health care in 2004 (more if you count the tax break
    US firms get for offering health care coverage to their employees).
    Canada spends just under 10% of its GDP on health care and gets better
    health outcomes (e.g. longevity). Of that 16% of GDP in the US, the
    government picks up over 6% for the elderly, poor and veterans (and pays
    inflated prices set by the "for profit" sector).

    Health care inflation outstrips the general inflation figure in almost
    all advanced countries. So every nation has a problem, the US just has
    a relatively bigger one.

    The US's neighbours and friends can sleep a little sounder at night
    knowing that if the US had an efficient health care system, it would
    have 6% more of its GDP to spend on foreign adventures.

    BTW There has been a spike in shark attacks on Australian beaches this
    summer. Could there be a connection?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 02, 2006 @01:28PM (#14835872)
    You can still eat meat on not feel this guilt:

    Years ago I slaughtered a goat. It wasn't easy, but I wanted to do it. As a noob, I unintentionally made it suffer because I hesitated due to squeamishness (and dizziness) when I cut its throat, not making a clean incision (and ending up with a screaming, bleeding goat shitting and pissing all over me). But it only lasted ~20 seconds. Overall, it was a very stinky, messy procedure that took a very long time. Furthermore, my cuts were poorly done and I ended up with splintered bone hidden in many places, so we all had to eat carefully.

    The point is: I did it. And I felt a very strong connection with the animal itself. I didn't feel bad about killing it, I felt very primal and preditory; it was a very intense feeling that I was doing it for survival (even though that wasn't true). I suppose my mind was inventing ways to justify death, and it did succeed in convincing me.

    I don't want to do it again, because it is easier to plunk down $150~$200 for a pro to do it in an hour (and returned nicely packaged parts)... it was tedious manual labor, like tilesetting or drywall.

    However, I feel I earned a shield against fellow liberals' criticism and can eat meat with conviction. Of course, I'm still against cruelty (hello to true "free range" organic livestock), but not against meat.

Marvelous! The super-user's going to boot me! What a finely tuned response to the situation!