Sramana Majumdar

"Violence, Identity and Self-determination: Narratives of conflict from the Kashmir Valley" 4:15 PM, Monday 18 Nov Room 239, BYC Bryn Mawr College

Exposure Index

Tired of paper and pencil questionnaires about integration and intergroup contact? Try the new and improved EXPOSURE INDEX (click tab above on this page).

Robotic pruning

Pruning, fruit picking, and tree management are time consuming tasks heavily dependent on human pattern detection and visual processing.  Even though computer systems are notoriously bad at those skills, it has not stopped scientists and engineers from trying to produce a fully automated pruning system.

National Geographic: Cheap, Disposable UAS are the New Storm Chasers

The military is not the only organization with hazardous flight missions.  Besides hurricanes and wildfires, the article also discusses the development of small, quiet, and mostly biodegradable drones for wildlife tracking.

Driverless tractors till German high-tech farm

Germany’s manufacturing industry – already known for high-tech heavy machinery – is well placed to supply this transition to automated agriculture.

India: Army ‘mistook planets for spy drones’

A tense border and a paranoid view of Chinese military developments conspired to produce this absurdity.

FAA Certifies First 2 Types Of Drones For Civilian Use

While civilians have long had access to remote control aircraft and other hobby-level drones, these tended to be small and operated in unrestricted Class G airspace.  This FAA certification opens the door for larger, longer range civilian UAVs capable of surveying and mapping inaccessible areas.

A Meta-Study of Drone Strike Casualties

This article investigates the high variance in attempts to count civilian casualties of drone strikes.  While the government has at times claimed that there were no civilian casualties, the studies looked at here indicate 7% to 34% of deaths were noncombatants.

U.S. Drone Strike Kills at Least 6 in Pakistan

Article states that a senior commander in a Pakistani Taliban group was killed.  It also states that Pakistan continues to see the drone strikes as counterproductive and an affront to their sovereignty.

Testing the Future: Astronaut in Space Remote-Controls Robot in California

A new series of tests on how best to remotely operate unmanned vehicles in outer space.  While light-speed will still limit the practical range of such techniques, it’s certainly useful for orbital to lunar operations.

The Ethics of Saving Lives With Autonomous Cars Are Far Murkier Than You Think

A discussion of autonomous cars from the point of view of a philosopher.

U.S. Navy Gets in on Drone Action With First Real Aircraft Carrier Landing

Previous landing tests occurred on land-based mock-ups of a carrier runway and wire.  Though several attempts were aborted, the X-47B has proven that autonomous carrier landings are possible.