November 2, 2017

DON'T JUST GET RID OF THE SAILORS, GET RID OF THE SHIPS:

How Robots Will Help the U.S. Navy Avoid Future Collisions (PATRICK TUCKER, 11/02/17, Defense One)

Japanese, Chinese, and Norwegian shipbuilders have announced plans to build self-driving robotic vessels. Google, working with Rolls Royce, is applying its Google Cloud Machine Learning Engine to develop autonomous ship driving techniques that any number of companies might adopt. In many ways, a robot helmsman has it easier than a self-driving car, so long as everybody is broadcasting enough data to be detectable to everyone else.

One key takeaway from the fatal collisions is that the Navy's problems are very human in nature. Talking about the new report and its conclusions on Thursday, Adm. John Richardson, Chief of Naval Operations, said the Navy has too few people with too little training driving too few ships. There was, he said, too much pressure on the crewmen of ships in the Pacific to be everywhere at once, and that led to sailors steering ships and operating sensors and navigational equipment without proper training.

"These were fundamental mistakes of ship driving," he said, mistakes compounded by issues related to operational pressures.

Posted by at November 2, 2017 7:39 PM

  

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