Strict limitations on small drones needed because of our soft target problem

On average it takes about 50,000 bullets to kill one soldier. Soldier have protection and are working together to avoid getting killed.

A bullet costs about 50 cents.

It costs about $25000 to kill each soldier.

It costs less to kill civilian soft targets.

There is also the issue of protecting hydro dams and oil refineries and other facilities. Damage in critical locations can trigger far more casualties.

There was the Slaughterbot video discussing the combination of Artificial intelligence with mini-drones.

AI mini drone = may initially cost $2,000 but could drop to $20 to 200 with mass production.

Die Hard 4 depicted a “Fire sale” cyber attack on the nations infrastructure.

The Winter Solider, Captain America 2, depicted the selective but mass targeting of individuals.

The more worrisome scenario is an AI drone assisted Fire sale attack on infrastructure and other soft targets.

AI image recognition and intelligent response are currently hard problems. However, there will be AI integration and marketplace breakthroughs which will drastically lower the costs and speed development.

Also, being less selective and more destructive is easier than being more selective.

ISIS in Syria has made kamikaze drones that are loaded with explosives.

The military will have their own drone fleets just as they have their own jets and bombers.
The large police departments will have their smaller drone fleets.

There will be a gap over the coverage of soft targets.

Restricting Artificial Intelligence would not work just as we have not been able to stop cyber crime and other electronic abuses.

Self driving cars are higher cost per unit and would be easier to manage.

* We will have to restrict the mass production of small drones and may have to forgo certain applications like drone delivery with smaller drones.
* Air power fights air power, so we will need to have counter drone technology and counter drones under the assumption that restrictions are violated
* improving the security of soft infrastructure targets has been lagging for the last few decades. This needs to be addressed and improved
* However, there are too many soft targets. Every dry patch of brush can have a fire, so we will need to restrict drones and drone technology to give more time for improvements to counter measures.

The soft target issue has been around and vulnerable for a long time. However, making it trivially easy to mass target the soft targets is a new and emerging problem.

9 thoughts on “Strict limitations on small drones needed because of our soft target problem”

  1. Every dry patch of brush can have a fire, so we will need to restrict drones and drone technology to give more time for improvements to counter measures.

    Actually, that is evidence that we may be worried over nothing.

    Every dry patch of brush can have a fire, and has been vulnerable to deliberate fires since about 100 000 B.C. But so far we have not had problems with mass deliberate arson as a method of terrorism, despite the facts that

    1. Not even the UK has banned unlicensed matches and lighters (yet).
    2. Setting every patch of bush on fire on the same, hot, dry, windy, day would be sure to overwhelm any fire department, and result in devastating loss of property, homes, probably life, close down infrastructure, damage GDP etc.
    3. Doing so cheaply and safely (for the villain) is trivial.

    But, like a number of other vulnerabilities, this doesn’t meet the image requirements and other needs of the attackers (I won’t speculate as to what these actually are.)

    Reply
    • While your point is well made, perhaps it would be good not to spell such ideas out in order to not give bad people good ideas. The fact that most terrorists/arsonists/criminals aren’t geniuses probably reduces the amount of successful attacks.

      On the other hand, thinking of innovative ways to cause trouble could help good people invent methods to prevent them.

      Reply
      • Mmmm. Reply vanished.

        Anyway, I figured the original article mentioned it first, so any damage was already done. Normally I don’t mention such stuff.

        Reply
  2. This article is heavy on Contractor criticisms but light on the myriad of bureaucratic requirements flown-down. Like CPP, DFARS, CYBER, TAMPER, PPP, SBP, ISO, CMMI, TINA, and lets not forget diversity. Show me the difference in regulation count then versus now and then I may say you have a leg to stand on. Make sane requirements and maybe then small business can compete and bring prices down.

    Reply
  3. We will have to restrict the mass production of small drones and may have to forgo certain applications like drone delivery with smaller drones.

    Right. Like how we have been so successful in restricting drugs and guns and once-upon-a-time even alcohol.

    Sometimes I wonder was bubble reality Brian lives in. 🙂

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    • Agreed. You can stop Amazon and UPS from making drone deliveries because they will play by the rules but you can’t stop the bad actors because they do not play by the rules.

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      • If you outlaw drones only outlaws will have drones… and that makes life much easier for local air defense, because they can take immediate action against any drone they see, without having to first check that it isn’t a pizza delivery.

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  4. It’s not even remotely plausible. They are too easy to build.

    What’s far more dangerous is how cheap DNA editing is becoming, and we have no prayer of keeping bad actors from doing that either.

    Spreading out is the only plausible solution.

    Reply

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