Showing posts with label Intelligence. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Intelligence. Show all posts

24 April 2017

Palantir's Relationship With America's Spies Has Been Worse Than You'd Think

By BuzzFeed

Palantir Technologies, the Silicon Valley data company co-founded by billionaire investor Peter Thiel, has developed an almost mythical reputation for its work building tools for the U.S. intelligence community. But Palantir has had a far rockier relationship with the nation’s top spy agencies than its image would let on, BuzzFeed News has learned.

As of summer 2015, the Central Intelligence Agency, a signature client, was “recalcitrant” and didn’t “like us,” while Palantir’s relationship with the National Security Agency had ended, Palantir CEO Alex Karp told staff in an internal video that was obtained by BuzzFeed News. The private remarks, made during a staff meeting, are at odds with a carefully crafted public image that has helped Palantir secure a $20 billion valuation and win business from a long list of corporations, nonprofits, and governments around the world.

“As many of you know, the SSDA’s recalcitrant,” Karp, using a Palantir codename for the CIA, said in the August 2015 meeting. “And we’ve walked away, or they walked away from us, at the NSA. Either way, I’m happy about that.”

20 April 2017

World War II Had Many Spies, But None That Matched This Pathan

He helped Bose who was seeking help from Germany and Japan to free India escape from the country via Kabul, and that was all even Bose knew of this man, who in reality was betraying Bose to the British.

Bhagat Ram Talwar, the only quintuple spy of World War II, whose spymaster Peter Fleming gave him the code name Silver, was spying for Britain, Italy, Germany, Japan and the USSR, all at the same time without any of them having a whiff of it. While the best of spies with all their skill stayed put in one city, this deceptive Pathan shuttled between Kabul and India, 24 times, that too on foot.

Mihir Bose’s The Indian Spy, the true story of the most remarkable secret agents of the World War II, recounts all of the life of this mastermind, who managed to deceive almost everybody, yet remain unscathed.

Some of the characters one comes across in the excerpt below which talks of how Talwar took the Nazi’s for a ride are, Uttam Chand , Talwars’ former jail mate in Peshawar who had moved to and set up a shop in Kabul and helped him hide Bose by hosting him in his own house, and Carl Rudolf Rasmuss, a member of the German Diplomatic Club and former German Trade Commissioner in Calcutta.

Here is an excerpt:

During Silver’s absence from Kabul, Uttam Chand had become more involved with the foreign powers there. Rasmuss had asked his help in getting hold of gold sovereigns—Shankar Das, the Indian merchant helping the Italians, could not obtain enough—to pay bribes to Afghan officials and also the tribal leaders, and soon Uttam Chand was buying some 2,000 gold sovereigns 1 as well as Indian currency for the Germans from various brokers in Kabul. He also took to visiting the Russian Minister telling him more about Bose and Silver, passing on various titbits of information about how the Japanese were trying to bribe Afghan officials, and how the Kirti party was not happy about Silver maintaining relations with the Axis powers.

18 April 2017

A Discussion on National Security with CIA Director Mike Pompeo

JOHN J. HAMRE: Thank you. I rarely get applause when I come out. I’m sorry, no, I – (laughter). Welcome. Thank you. We’re delighted to have all of you here. 

My name is John Hamre. I’m the president at CSIS. I told the director that we’ve got standing room only, and I said let’s not wait another 15 minutes to watch the clock come; let’s get going. And he said of course, let’s do that. And typical of his character, he’s always getting at it. And I want to say thank you for coming, sir. 

When we have events like this, we always start with a little safety announcement. I am responsible for your safety, so follow my instructions if I ask you to do anything. I’m not worried about the director. He’s got guys with guns here, so we’re going to take it that’s going to be OK. (Laughter.) But I am worried about you. And if I have to ask you to leave the room, the exits are right behind us. These three are exits. The stairs closest to the – or to the stairs going down is right through here. We take two left-hand turns. We’re going to go over to the courtyard of National Geographic, I will order ice cream, and we’ll sing a song of praise for our salvation, OK? (Laughter, applause.) 

Anyway, everything’s going to be fine. Just follow me if I have to ask you to do something. 

We’re very honored that Director Pompeo has chosen to come. When his people called and said he wants to come on Thursday afternoon before Easter weekend, I said, what the hell? Who is going to come to this, you know? (Laughter.) And lots of people are here, obviously, because this is an enormous opportunity to hear the director. We’re very privileged to have him here. 

I would say that we’re very fortunate as a country that Director Pompeo is willing to serve at this time. His life has been about service. He was the highest-ranking cadet at West Point when he graduated from West Point, and his entire life, career has been about service. He’s been in and out of government and private sector. Fortunately, at this hour he’s willing to serve all of us as the director of the CIA. 

17 April 2017



Word that President Donald Trump as well as some of his family and associates may have appeared in National Security Agency (NSA) intercepts as masked (and in some cases later unmasked) identities has caused a great deal of sturm und drang in the United States. Many Americans are convinced that the mentions of Trump-linked personalities in signals intelligence reports indicates that the “deep state” or the Obama administration was “surveilling” them and that this is a dangerous politicization of the intelligence community. Eli Lake of Bloomberg View, for instance, wrote:

One U.S. official familiar with the reports said they contained valuable political information on the Trump transition such as whom the Trump team was meeting, the views of Trump associates on foreign policy matters and plans for the incoming administration.

Lake’s source is doubtless correct that these reports contained “valuable political information,” even if his conclusion that there is a legitimate “unmasking” scandal afoot is off base. Because America is important, foreigners spend a lot of time talking amongst themselves about Americans. The NSA targets the communications of influential foreigners, so we should expect the names of Americans to appear on a routine basis. Moreover, American officials who are named in intercepts often have reason to be grateful for that fact.

13 April 2017

** Unlocking The Secrets Of MOMINT

 By Scott Stewart

The old cliche goes that there's no substitute for a mother's love. But for Chinese intelligence officers, her access to classified information comes close. On March 29, the U.S. Department of Justice announced the arrest of Candace Claiborne, an office management specialist (or administrative assistant) with the State Department, for failing to disclose thousands of dollars in gifts and payments from Chinese officials.

Above graphic: The Federal Bureau of Investigation crest inside the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building in Washington, DC. It pays to know who your mother is receiving gifts from. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

The criminal complaint against Claiborne notes that she was in communication with two suspected operatives with the Shanghai State Security Bureau, a regional office that reports to the Chinese Civilian intelligence service the Ministry of State Security (MSS) in Beijing. It also cites an instance in May 2011, during Claiborne's third tour in China, when a suspected Chinese intelligence officer contacted her to request internal U.S. government analysis of a recent U.S.-China strategic economic dialogue. A month earlier, Claiborne received a $2,480 payment. (It isn't clear whether she provided the document, which probably explains why she hasn't been charged with espionage.)

Some of the gifts that Claiborne accepted, which included thousands of dollars in cash and items such as an iPhone and MacBook computer, were for her personal use. Many of them, however, went to a person identified in the complaint against her as "Co-conspirator A." The media initially ran with stories that the figure was a man deployed by Chinese intelligence to steal Claiborne's heart - and any privileged information she had access to - in a so-called "honey-trap" operation. After all, female administrators are frequent targets of these kinds of schemes, which typically dispatch attractive men (known as "ravens") to romance them. But the details of the complaint make clear that Co-conspirator A is, in fact, Claiborne's adult son, who returned to live with his mother in China in 2012 after finishing college in Maryland. Among the items he received through his mother's Chinese contacts are tuition at a fashion school in Shanghai, spending money, a furnished apartment, international vacations for him and his friends, a sewing machine, and herbal medicines.

6 April 2017

Intelligent adoption of artificial intelligence

Milan Sheth

Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most talked about technologies in recent times. It is capable of increasing enterprise revenue through identifying, analysing and, most importantly, acting on the insights from underlying data. The pertinent question is, “Should we wait for AI to evolve fully and then apply it or should we look at specific applications to solve business challenges?”

Range of AI—Human assistant to human replacement

The combination of parallel processing power, massive data sets, advanced algorithms and machine learning capabilities are spawning varied versions of AI systems.

Today, AI capabilities vary from specific/narrow to super, all-encompassing AI.

Narrow, or specific AI, is an intelligent assistant that can aid humans in making complex decisions and enhance their cognitive powers by processing vast amounts of data. It can conceptualize and correlate data, recognize the patterns and deliver intelligent output.

For instance, soft AI can be used to detect frauds in various sectors such as banks.

4 April 2017

How Artificial Intelligence And The Robotic Revolution Will Change The Workplace Of Tomorrow

by Benjamin Wohl

The workplace is going to look drastically different ten years from now. The coming of the Second Machine Age is quickly bringing massive changes along with it. Manual jobs, such as lorry driving or house building are being replaced by robotic automation, and accountants, lawyers, doctors and financial advisers are being supplemented and replaced by high level artificial intelligence (AI) systems.

So what do we need to learn today about the jobs of tomorrow? Two things are clear. The robots and computers of the future will be based on a degree of complexity that will be impossible to teach to the general population in a few short years of compulsory education. And some of the most important skills people will need to work with robots will not be the things they learn in computing class.

There is little doubt that the workforce of tomorrow will need a different set of skills in order to know how to navigate a new world of work. Current approaches for preparing young people for the digital economy are based on teaching programming and computational thinking. However, it looks like human workers will not be replaced by automation, but rather workers will work alongside robots. If this is the case, it will be essential that human/robot teams draw on each other's strengths.

31 March 2017

Network Take: The Intelligence Community’s Critical Role


We are living in a more complex world, with more state and non-state actors demanding more of our attention. When we actively contributed to the defeat of the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, the success of the Solidarity Movement in Poland, and the eventual demise of the Soviet Union in 1991 after the Baltic States and the eleven Soviet Republics declared independence, we thought the Soviet Union was a spent power, requiring minimal attention.

When we decisively defeated Iraq during the first Gulf War in 1990, after they invaded and occupied Kuwait, we thought a defeated Saddam would behave. When we signed the Agreed Framework with North Korea in 1994, agreeing to build two civilian Light Water Reactors and while under construction provide heavy fuel oil as payment for the freezing of North Korea’s nuclear program, we though Kim Jong-il would comply and behave.

These developments in the early 1990s contributed to a view that the need for foreign intelligence was less important; that savings could be had by spending less money on intelligence collection and analysis, given that our principal enemies were no longer a threat. We now know that our euphoria was misplaced; that these successes were temporary and that these state actors persisted with their bad behavior. We also know that other state and non-state actors now require more of our attention, given their territorial and ideological ambitions.

27 March 2017

The Compromising Of America

By Edward Jay Epstein,

Edward Snowden’s theft of files, whatever good it accomplished in igniting a national conversation on surveillance, also opened the door to more aggressive Russian intrusions in cyberspace. How could it not? According to the unanimous report of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Snowden removed digital copies of 1.5 million files; 900,000 of them originated not with the NSA but Department of Defense documents, and concerned, among other things, the newly created joint Cyber Command. Other stolen files contained documents that originated with the British signal intelligence service, known as GCHQ, which Snowden had used his special access to obtain. One NSA file, a 31,000-page database, included requests to the NSA made by the 16 other agencies in the Intelligence Community for coverage of foreign targets. NSA Deputy Director Rick Ledgett, who headed the NSA’s damage assessment, described this database as the “keys to the kingdom” because it provided a roadmap to all of the gaps in coverage of Russia and other adversaries.

When sensitive compartmentalized information (SCI) is removed without authorization from the NSA’s secure facilities, as it was by Snowden, it is, by definition, compromised, regardless of what is done with it. Whether Snowden gave these files to journalists, Russians or Chinese intelligence, erased them or threw them in the Pacific Ocean, all the sources in them had to be considered compromised and shut down. So did the methods they revealed. The Pentagon, which did a more extensive damage assessment than the NSA, assigned hundreds of intelligence officers, in round-the-clock shifts, to go through each of the 1.5 million files to find all of the fatally compromised sources and methods in them. The self-destruct button then had to be pressed to close them down. Doing so punched a deep hole in the capabilities of the NSA, the Cyber Command, the British GCHQ, and other allied intelligence services—so deep that Booz Allen Vice-Chairman Michael McConnell, who had previously headed both the NSA and the office of National Intelligence, said, “An entire generation of intelligence was lost.” One measure of the seriousness of the ensuing blindness was the NSA’s failure to detect Russia’s preparations for the invasion of Ukraine in early 2014, according to the Wall Street Journal.

26 March 2017

The Architecture of Artificial Intelligence

By Hannah Wood

“Let us consider an augmented architect at work. He sits at a working station that has a visual display screen some three feet on a side, this is his working surface, controlled by a computer with which he can communicate by means of small keyboards and various other devices.” – Douglas Engelbart

This vision of the future architect was imagined by engineer and inventor Douglas Engelbart during his research into emerging computer systems at Stanford in 1962. At the dawn of personal computing he imagined the creative mind overlapping symbiotically with the intelligent machine to co-create designs. This dual mode of production, he envisaged, would hold the potential to generate new realities which could not be realized by either entity operating alone. Today, self-learning systems, otherwise known as artificial intelligence or ‘AI’, are changing the way architecture is practiced, as they do our daily lives, whether or not we realize it. If you are reading this on a laptop or tablet, then you are directly engaging with a number of integrated AI systems, now so embedded in our the way we use technology, they often go unnoticed.

As an industry, AI is growing at an exponential rate, now understood to be on track to be worth $70bn globally by 2020. This is in part due to constant innovation in the speed of microprocessors, which in turn increases the volume of data that can be gathered and stored. But don’t panic—the artificial architect with enhanced Revit proficiency is not coming to steal your job. The human vs. robot debate, while compelling, is not so much the focus here but instead how AI is augmenting design and how architects are responding to and working with these technological developments. What kind of innovation is artificial intelligence generating in the construction industry?

 5 Corporations Now Dominate Our Privatized Intelligence Industry

By Tim Shorrock

This unaccountable oligarchy of spies controls the information that guides our military and civilian leaders.

The recent integration of two military contractors into a $10 billion behemoth is the latest in a wave of mergers and acquisitions that have transformed America’s privatized, high-tech intelligence system into what looks like an old-fashioned monopoly.

In August, Leidos Holdings, a major contractor for the Pentagon and the National Security Agency, completed a long-planned merger with the Information Systems & Global Solutions division of Lockheed Martin, the global military giant. The 8,000 operatives employed by the new company do everything from analyzing signals for the NSA to tracking down suspected enemy fighters for US Special Forces in the Middle East and Africa.

The sheer size of the new entity makes Leidos one of the most powerful companies in the intelligence-contracting industry, which is worth about $50 billion today. According to a comprehensive study I’ve just completed on public and private employment in intelligence, Leidos is now the largest of five corporations that together employ nearly 80 percent of the private-sector employees contracted to work for US spy and surveillance agencies.

18 March 2017

WikiLeaks Dump Shines Light on Government’s Shadowy Zero-Day Policy


The documents shed little light on how many unknown vulnerabilities the intelligence agency retains and how well it vets the damage they might cause.

WikiLeaks’ massive release of CIA cyber exploits this week produced more questions than answers about the government’s shadowy procedure for hoarding damaging digital vulnerabilities that remain unknown even to a system’s manufacturer.

These bugs—called zero days because industry has had zero days to create and promulgate a software patch—can be goldmines for U.S. intelligence agencies looking to sneak undetected into the computers, phones and other electronic devices of terrorists and officials of adversary nation-states.

These glitches can be extremely dangerous, however, if those same terrorists or other nations’ intelligence agencies discover them independently and use them to spy on Americans. If discovered by cyber criminals, they might also be used to steal money or information from American citizens or U.S. companies.

How Many Zero Days Does the Government Have?

11 March 2017

Pay attention to your threat intelligence’s shelf life

Nick Ismail

Organisations want to be seen to be taking threat intelligence seriously, implementing strategies and platforms that absorb hundreds of indicators on a daily basis. But how many of these organisations realise that their threat data will expire? 

In order to be effective and successful as you add more sophisticated aging metrics to your approach, an expiration strategy must be simple, reliable, relatively predictable and easy to adjust 

With each day that passes, threat intelligence platforms automatically absorb hundreds, thousands, potentially millions of indicators, forcing teams, and vendors, to quickly define a threat data lifecycle or expiration strategy. 

Much like attribution, expiration efforts are very subjective and depend entirely on tools, adversaries, feeds, and the teams’ sanity point between chasing false positives and precautionary due diligence alerts. 

So what do people mean when they talk about expiration? Put simply, your threat intelligence has a shelf life and this means it needs to be kept track of, used before it goes off and got rid of when it’s past its best. 

10 March 2017

Report Finds Botched Israeli Leadership and Intelligence Failings During 2014 Gaza Strip War

TEL AVIV – Two and a half years after Israel’s summer 2014 Gaza war, Israel’s comptroller general on Tuesday released his report on the 50-day conflict, with findings ranging from ill-preparedness vis a vis the tunnel threat and inappropriate reliance on military brass for strategic decisions that should have been made by civilian government authorities.

In his voluminous report on what is known here as Operation Protective Edge, State Comptroller Yosef Shapira admonished Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his security cabinet for insufficient attention to strategic objectives regarding the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. Cabinet meetings on the issue, he wrote, were “limited,” particularly regarding alternative options to use of military force.

War objectives that were authorized by the government, he wrote, were determined by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), and not by the security Cabinet.

“The Cabinet is the long arm of the government, and according to basic law, the military is subordinate to it,” he wrote. He took Netanyahu and former Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon to task for not involving other relevant ministers in decisions taken between the two of them at the recommendation of the IDF.

9 March 2017

The Sri Lankan Counterterrorism Model: Intelligence Innovation Outside the Anglosphere


In reading Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) of the ongoing counterterrorism operations in Iraq, Syria, and Libya, I have noticed a pattern in Islamic State’s “modus operandi”, that of an analogical spider.

Spiders have eight legs and two body parts, including the head region (cephalothorax) and the abdomen. Most spiders have toxic venom, which they use to kill their prey. So, if the international community wants to get rid of ISIS, hypothetically speaking, they must get rid of ISIS’ cephalothorax, rather than fight with its eight legs. What I try to pinpoint here is that, while ISIS's headquarters (cephalothorax) are in Syria, their means of survival (abdomen) depend on how much area they control in Iraq. Thus, before this ISIS "spider" transforms into a "multi-headed" and "multi-pronged" spider, the international community must target their headquarters in Syria.

Although international intelligence agencies have feet of clay, particularly in dealing with an enemy of many different faces, I feel that they deserve a more involved role than just being the eyes and ears of any one nation. Recommendations for an appropriate tradecraft to achieve collective intelligence are the need of the day. Although there is no truth to search for, no absolute truth, since everything is subjective, the valuable role that intelligence agencies play in producing deterrence is paramount. Achieving a state of global terrorist deterrence is what I consider the essential argument.

7 March 2017

CENTCOM Already Implementing Recommendations To Improve Intelligence Efforts

By: John Grady

U.S. Central Command headquarters at McDill Air Force Base.

The Pentagon’s inspector general’s office is following up on 29 recommendations it made to ensure intelligence analysis in U.S. Central Command remains unbiased and not politicized, the acting IG told a key congressional subcommittee.

Glenn Fine, testifying Tuesday before the House Armed Services oversight and investigation subcommittee, said “we want specific details” on what CENTCOM is doing now and will do in 60 days following the release of the unclassified report, which was released in late January.

Although the IG’s probe did not find that intelligence was being tampered with, it did find “troubling and widespread” problems in communications and leadership. Fine said CENTCOM, the Joint Staff, the defense secretariat and Defense Intelligence Agency have expressed general support of the IG’s findings and recommendations.

Among the recommendations was the idea that CENTCOM needed to improve feedback and guidance to analysts, so they know who exactly they are working for, what their relationship is with the Defense Intelligence Agency, and and that an analysis of alternatives is required in final intelligence products.

5 March 2017

The Iranian Intelligence and Security Services Continue to Arrest Anyone Remotely Suspected of Spying

The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps will continue to arrest Iranians with Western citizenship or residency as a way to secure its interests and boost its legitimacy. 

The frequency of arrests may increase as Iran’s emergence from international isolation attracts Iranians living abroad to return. 

Such incidents will run counter to President Hassan Rouhani’s drive to rejoin the global economy. 

Iran’s high-profile release of five imprisoned U.S. citizens in January 2016 marked a moment of detente between the United States and Iran, timed to coincide with Washington’s suspension of wide-ranging economic sanctions. Over the past year, however, Iran has continued to arrest people with Western citizenship or residence, more than making up for those it released in January. Whereas Tehran ended 2015 with 11 acknowledged Western prisoners, that number was up to 16 by the end of 2016 — and that’s only the prisoners whom the public knows about.

Iran has long had a reputation for imprisoning political dissenters. Hundreds of journalists, activists and academics are in jail in Iran for various political offenses, raising concerns about Iran’s domestic legal system and the propriety of political dissent. A smaller group of prisoners who hold either foreign passports or have foreign residency sheds light on how Iran’s security apparatus is maintaining relevance amid Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s drive for reform.

1 March 2017

** The Data-Driven Transformation of Intelligence

Jason M. Brown

When “little green men” invaded Crimea in early 2014, they left a data trail that went largely unnoticed by the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC). Distracted by a large Russian exercise to the west, the IC did not connect the digital dots that indicated the impending invasion. In the Information Age, the “dots” are more plentiful and glaring as everyone now leaves a data trail. Given that, how can intelligence analysts better gather, share, organize, and view data to reveal intent, more accurately predict behavior, and make better decisions with limited resources?

Intelligence is, for the most part, production focused, meaning many analysts are often forced to make quick assessments from limited text-based sources to meet deadlines. As such, they can be trapped into making predictions that put too much weight on personal experience and cognitive biases. This is a big problem considering the difficulty of forecasting the behavior of every rival the U.S. faces in the global arena or on the battlefield. The best analysis derives from the right combination of art and science. It is dangerous to favor the former at the expense of the latter, even for the most experienced and skilled analysts. 

If the U.S. government is to deal with deceptive and elusive adversaries, the IC must make data, structured in a way to tell a story, the foundation for its intelligence assessments. Data analytics are changing how we approach economics, elections, health, security, business, and our daily routines. It is time for intelligence to catch up. Analysts must pair their intuition and expertise with data science to give decision-makers the best possible intelligence. 

In turn, IC and defense leaders must accelerate this data-driven transformation of intelligence tradecraft, and demand a more structured, scientific approach to the intelligence problems we face.

24 February 2017

*** How Trump Donor Peter Thiel’s Palantir Technologies Helped NSA Spy on the Whole World

Donald Trump has inherited the most powerful machine for spying ever devised. How this petty, vengeful man might wield and expand the sprawling American spy apparatus, already vulnerable to abuse, is disturbing enough on its own. But the outlook is even worse considering Trump’s vast preference for private sector expertise and new strategic friendship with Silicon Valley billionaire investor Peter Thiel, whose controversial (and opaque) company Palantir has long sought to sell governments an unmatched power to sift and exploit information of any kind. Thiel represents a perfect nexus of government clout with the kind of corporate swagger Trump loves. The Intercept can now reveal that Palantir has worked for years to boost the global dragnet of the NSA and its international partners, and was in fact co-created with American spies. 

Peter Thiel became one of the American political mainstream’s most notorious figures in 2016 (when it emerged he was bankrolling a lawsuit against Gawker Media, my former employer) even before he won a direct line to the White House.Now he brings to his role as presidential adviser decades of experience as kingly investor and token nonliberal on Facebook’s board of directors, a Rolodex of software luminaries, and a decidedly Trumpian devotion to controversy and contrarianism. But perhaps the most appealing asset Thiel can offer our bewildered new president will be Palantir Technologies, which Thiel founded with Alex Karp and Joe Lonsdale in 2004.

Palantir has never masked its ambitions, in particular the desire to sell its services to the U.S. government — the CIA itself was an early investor in the startup through In-Q-Tel, the agency’s venture capital branch. But Palantir refuses to discuss or even name its government clientele, despite landing “at least $1.2 billion” in federal contracts since 2009, according to an August 2016 report in Politico. The company was last valued at $20 billion and is expected to pursue an IPO in the near future. In a 2012 interview with TechCrunch, while boasting of ties to the intelligence community, Karp said nondisclosure contracts prevent him from speaking about Palantir’s government work.

19 February 2017

Can Artificial Intelligence Replace Human Intuition?

by Upasana Bhattacharjee

The International Conference for Automated Planning and Scheduling (ICAPS) hosts competitions every other year where computer systems try to find solutions to planning problems (such as scheduling flights). Researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory are discovering processes to augment the technology by imbuing human intuition in them. This is another reminder of how far the developments in artificial intelligence have come along with their pace especially when posed against the economic progress and ethical understanding they demand.

Understanding the technology

Automated planning and scheduling is an aspect of artificial intelligence that is concerned with constructing strategies for machines (intelligent agents, autonomous robots, etc.) based on factors like the observability, determinism and variables involved in the situation. ICAPS is a forum for researchers and practitioners to ensure progress in the field. This branch of artificial intelligence is extremely useful in fields like space systems, software engineering and robotics.