Posted on May 22, 2007, Shawn Sines Video Games Fight War on Terror
WKYC 9 News Now has a piece on using a video game interface to help our troops in the War on Terror. The Predator unmanned aerial system is one of the chief instruments in the fight. However it is prone crashing. We’ve lost nearly half of them to human error. The interface used to control the craft is a chaotic mass of maps and screens that only show narrow camera views from the craft. One of the operators of the Predator for the Air Force known only as Katie describes the current interface.
“It can be like looking through a soda straw. You have that tunnel vision.”
Defense contractor Raytheon may have come up with a video game inspired Universal Control System to solve the difficult interface problems. Operators would be surrounded by monitors making them feel like they are in the cockpit of the Predator. They execute commands with keyboard and joy stick. The hardware for the system is available off the shelf at stores you likely frequent.
“Revolutionary situational awareness….It’s much easier to put myself in the aircraft and say I need to go in this direction to acquire the target,” says Katie.
Watch the video to see for yourself what a big difference Raytheon’s Universal Control System makes.