Thoughts from The Edge
Mick Ryan is the Commander of the Australian Defence College. This column from Ryan and his contributors focusses on intellectually preparing members of the profession of arms for strategic competition and future conflict.
How to Think (and How Not To)
In this piece, Ben McLennan discusses the pressing need to educate the Army’s workforce on how to think (and how not to). In his discussion, McLennan cogently addresses systems thinking, inherent biases and the need for open-mindedness as part of understanding the recipe to transform Army’s thinking. While specific to McLennan’s Army experience, his observations are equally applicable to other Services and anyone who aspires to think in a way that harnesses a competitive advantage.
Is AI Really a Threat to Humanity?
This article comments on the impact of Cognitive Bias, found in AI systems, on our future. It provides the examples of the biased systems and asks the fundamental questions on our strategy going forward. The article is suitable for all the levels of JMPE continuum, and will be of interest to those particularly interested in Cognitive computing or Artificial Intelligence.
First Principles Review - Creating One Defence
The Review Team were tasked with ensuring that Defence is fit for purpose and is able to deliver against its strategy with the minimum resources necessary. Using a structured framework, the team have conducted an end-to-end holistic review based on the outcomes required of Defence and founded on the first principles agreed by the review team.
The Royal Australian Air Force Leadership Companion
The Air Force Leadership Companion is designed to assist Air Force personnel in understanding and contextualising the foundations of leadership as espoused in ADDP 00.6 Leadership. This companion explores the context of Social Mastery: Character, Professional Ethics, Followership and Leadership in the Air Force.
CDLE Command Paper 1 - 2016
The CDLE Command Paper 1-2016 is Commodore Peter Scott’s CSC, RAN account of Submarine Command and the issues he faced during his Command. In his paper CDRE Scott covers: qualification to command an Australian submarine, leadership with ultimate accountability and authority, the essential elements of command, purpose, vision and realism as guiding concepts, methods of submarine command, lessons from submarine command, obligations inherent in submarine command, behaviours, and traits to value and nurture.
Capability Boost: Trials Demonstrate Enhanced ViDAR/ScanEagle Package
This article from Jane’s International Defence Review discusses the use of Visual Detection and Ranging (ViDAR) technology on the ScanEagle unmanned aerial system (UAS) platform to provide detection capabilities comparable to radar using Electrooptical (EO) and Infra Red (IR) sensors.
Google Ponders the Shortcomings of Machine Learning
This article discusses Google’s AI research project Google Brain and DeepMind and their explanation for why, despite advances in computing power, machine learning still lags behind human cognitive skills, particularly the ability to “generalize beyond one’s experience”. The article describes the use of graphs of relationships to replicate neural networks as a potential area of future advancement in machine learning and artificial intelligence.
17 - 18 Annual Report
This is the Secretary of Defence and Chief of the Defence Force’s performance report to the Minister for Defence, the Parliament of Australia and the Australian public for the 2017–18 financial year. The report addresses the purposes and outcomes of the Department of Defence, including the Australian Defence Force—collectively known as Defence.
Glimpse: How Electronic Tattoos Will Change The World — And Ourselves
Scientists have developed a means to 3D print electronics onto the skin as a form of wearable technology akin to a tattoo. It is proposed that further development of this technology will allow these tattoos to monitor our vitals, and feed us personalized health advice in real time.
Artificial intelligence system uses transparent, human-like reasoning to solve problems
This article describes a method by which a computer can recognise objects using Transparency by Design Network (TbD-Net) developed at the MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Researchers have used human-like reasoning to develop an algorithm which they claim can outperform other visual recognition software and algorithms because humans can view its reasoning process to determine where and how it is making mistakes.
Social Contracts and the Australian Civil-Military Relationship
In Australia, troop deaths in combat remind the public of the terms of employment of Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel and raise the question of commensurate compensation. One community group is committed to the task of developing a ‘military covenant’ to articulate these terms and compensations based on the idea that the ‘unique nature’ of military service is an invocation of a social contract. But is a social contract really at the heart the Australian civil-military relationship?