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  • Imagine something like this in battlefield conditions but limited to a very few machines.

    Slaughterbots
    Youtube 9CO6M2HsoIA

    The sniper team is equipped with, say, a few dozen or score of these little monsters, and a few camouflaged "Spots" modified to carry them. Maybe a "big Dog" is also used to carry the Spots. Rather than infiltrating close to the enemy, infiltration is done in consecutive steps: 1) sniper team moves to within a mile or two of the enemy formation; 2) Spot units are then moved closer; 3) slaughterbots fly the last half mile of few hundred feet.

    Defense to this would be a PITA, where suppression EMF jamming by the enemy would screw with their own electronics. If the killbot is neutralized, Spot sends another. If your Spot is neutralized, Big Dog sends another. Lots of rinse and repeat. The actual sniper team is much safer.
  • You mean like...drones?
  • AdmirableSnackbar: You mean like...drones?


    Somewhat more organized and hardened than the popular concept of "drones."
  • Harlee: AdmirableSnackbar: You mean like...drones?

    Somewhat more organized and hardened than the popular concept of "drones."


    You mean like a Zerg rush?
  • The Chinese Drone Army is the future of warfare.
  • Im_Gumby: Harlee: AdmirableSnackbar: You mean like...drones?

    Somewhat more organized and hardened than the popular concept of "drones."

    You mean like a Zerg rush?


    Haven't played that game, but the Internet definition I see is "In gaming terms, a "Zerg rush" is when a player is swarmed by a huge number of weak opponents. ... "

    So, no. Have never been a sniper, either, but my understanding of the job description is to sneak around, slowly infiltrate, and take out individual high value targets (generals and other officers, usually). My understanding is also that snipers often have limited usefulness and life spans, since when there position (or even general area) is determined they can often be neutralized by sustained bombardment into the area. Your ghillie suit isn't gonna protect you from a targeted rocket barrage that makes 20 foot craters every 20 feet in all directions.

    No, what I'm talking about is "staged" infiltration. The human sniper team infiltrates the battle space to "X" distance. It then sends a stealthed version of a Big Dog a further "Y" distance toward the objective. The Big Dog then sends in a version of the Boston Dynamics "Spot" laden with maybe 10 very small slaughterbots a further "Z" distance, to within easy and quick flight range to the target.

    Do this with maybe 10 meat sniper teams (composed of a data reader and a drone navigator), each with maybe 10 Big Dogs, each of which have maybe 10 Spots, each of which has 10 slaughterbots. Now you've got 10x10x10x10 = 10,000 chances for a successful mission to kill that one general that's pissing off your general. At the very least it will keep the enemy busy to distraction countering your efforts.

    So 20 actual meat soldiers, hidden and dug in maybe miles from the actual battlespace, could tie down an entire farking army. The rest of the effort is a multiple cascade of stealthed machines (much cheaper to replace than even one trained actual meat sniper).

    This isn't about mass exterminations (as in the Slaughterbots video), but about targeted, highly selective battlefield assassinations.
  • Im_Gumby: Harlee: AdmirableSnackbar: You mean like...drones?

    Somewhat more organized and hardened than the popular concept of "drones."

    You mean like a Zerg rush?


    And, yes, jamming would be a big issue. Unless, of course, you used self-directed robots (which has all sorts of possible unintended consequences). Countering the jamming would be one of the jobs of the data reader member of the sniper team.

    Also yes, on reflection, MAYBE sort of like a targeted Zerg Rush.
  • The logistics would be a nightmare.  One of the advantages to a sniper team is their self sufficiency once inserted.  Depending on conditions, they could wait a week or even two until their target appeared.  The longer the drone versions have to wait, the greater the chances of detection or countermeasures.  They would have to return to base periodically to recharge or for maintenance, so you would have to rotate others in for coverage. They may have some utility in a classic static front line where opposing forces are squared off, but this hasn't been the case in most recent conflicts.
  • Harlee: Imagine something like this in battlefield conditions but limited to a very few machines.

    [Youtube-video https://www.youtube.com/embed/9CO6M2Hs​oIA]
    The sniper team is equipped with, say, a few dozen or score of these little monsters, and a few camouflaged "Spots" modified to carry them. Maybe a "big Dog" is also used to carry the Spots. Rather than infiltrating close to the enemy, infiltration is done in consecutive steps: 1) sniper team moves to within a mile or two of the enemy formation; 2) Spot units are then moved closer; 3) slaughterbots fly the last half mile of few hundred feet.

    Defense to this would be a PITA, where suppression EMF jamming by the enemy would screw with their own electronics. If the killbot is neutralized, Spot sends another. If your Spot is neutralized, Big Dog sends another. Lots of rinse and repeat. The actual sniper team is much safer.


    Then, by definition, you wouldn't be a "sniper".  You'd be something more akin to an artillery spotter, or ground controller for air attacks, except you'd be controlling slaughterbots.

    However, this is the sort of thing I've given a bit of thought to over the years, as you may well remember from past threads.

    https://www.fark.com/comments/9215798​
  • Movies never let aimbots be as murderously accurate as they would actually be. Instant death once in sensor range.
  • I you can't kill your opponent with a knife or your hands, then you are not a warrior.

    triggers are push buttons and push button warfare is for cheeto and dew bois.

    I'm sure this post will elicit some response from keyboard warriors all over, but in a behind the lines situation, you don't want to make a lot of noise.

    In fact, if you are on the front and can do a lot of damage quietly, that is psyops.

    Go to a war college.
  • You wouldn't be a sniper then, subby.
  • One of my biggest concerns about this sort of thing, and I really don't know what we can do about it, is that as we make technology more and more capable, it's going to be easier and easier to go to war.

    War has always been a bloody business.  And that has acted as a restraint on those who wish to start or continue a war.

    Once you make it relatively bloodless for one side (but not necessarily for the other), you lose the incentive to not get into those wars.

    But they still have a cost in terms of human lives, just not a cost in human lives that you care about.

    The development of weapons that are autonomous, or controlled by people dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of miles away means that the side that employs such weapons isn't going to have any "skin in the game".  When all you are losing is equipment, who cares?  That's actually good, because it means less unemployment at home, and companies making profits they can share with their shareholders.

    I can easily see this sort of thing leading to leaders being more willing to engage in "kinetic negotiations" with opponents who are not as technically capable.

    And that is a bad thing.

    But I don't see any way to change that.

    O brave new world, that has such machines in 't!
  • Keyser_Soze_Death: [64.media.tumblr.com image 500x281] [View Full Size image _x_]


    Now that I've told you about it, you can't unsee the reflection of the camera dolly holding the lights, camera, and the ball itself reflected in the ball.
  • You mean something like this?

    What's going to really be fun is when people start pairing facial recognition with autonomous sniper rifles. Why spend days or weeks waiting for your high-value target when you can place a few hidden boxes around the city and just wait for the general to walk in front of one.
  • I'm picturing a solar-powered drone with a slugthrower attached. Drop it into enemy territory. It activates on a timer. As soon as it acquires a target, it shoots to kill. No orders necessary, no signal to jam, no recharging. Maybe it turns itself off after a week, maybe it doesn't. It's like a land mine that can chase you down.

    Yes, there are all sorts of ethical questions, but there aren't many ethicists in foxholes.
  • Russell_Secord: I'm picturing a solar-powered drone with a slugthrower attached. Drop it into enemy territory. It activates on a timer. As soon as it acquires a target, it shoots to kill. No orders necessary, no signal to jam, no recharging. Maybe it turns itself off after a week, maybe it doesn't. It's like a land mine that can chase you down.

    Yes, there are all sorts of ethical questions, but there aren't many ethicists in foxholes.


    How is a 8 ounce drone going to handle the recoil of a large rifle round? Magic?
  • Mikey1969: Russell_Secord: I'm picturing a solar-powered drone with a slugthrower attached. Drop it into enemy territory. It activates on a timer. As soon as it acquires a target, it shoots to kill. No orders necessary, no signal to jam, no recharging. Maybe it turns itself off after a week, maybe it doesn't. It's like a land mine that can chase you down.

    Yes, there are all sorts of ethical questions, but there aren't many ethicists in foxholes.

    How is a 8 ounce drone going to handle the recoil of a large rifle round? Magic?


    If it's 8 ounces (or whatever), why would it have to?  It's essentially disposable.  Just make it explosive.  Detects your presence, activates, comes after you fast, and blows up when it's close enough.

    Think of a smart, longer range version of the Bouncing Betty.
  • dittybopper: Mikey1969: Russell_Secord: I'm picturing a solar-powered drone with a slugthrower attached. Drop it into enemy territory. It activates on a timer. As soon as it acquires a target, it shoots to kill. No orders necessary, no signal to jam, no recharging. Maybe it turns itself off after a week, maybe it doesn't. It's like a land mine that can chase you down.

    Yes, there are all sorts of ethical questions, but there aren't many ethicists in foxholes.

    How is a 8 ounce drone going to handle the recoil of a large rifle round? Magic?

    If it's 8 ounces (or whatever), why would it have to?  It's essentially disposable.  Just make it explosive.  Detects your presence, activates, comes after you fast, and blows up when it's close enough.

    Think of a smart, longer range version of the Bouncing Betty.


    Because the OP said "shoots to kill". I was pointing out the fact that the drone wouldn't handle the recoil of "shooting".
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