Analysts unable to digest flood of video intelligence from drones in Afghanistan, Iraq

Posted By: Staff
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Hampton (Virginia), Jan 11(ANI): United States spy drones and other sources from Afghanistan and Iraq have produced so much video intelligence that analysts are reportedly finding it difficult to keep up.

Every second of the footage is analyzed live as it is streamed to Langley Air Force Base, and it is then collected for later analysis, like searching for patterns of insurgent activity over time.

However, only a small fraction of the stored video has been retrieved for such intelligence purposes, the report said.

It is believed that Government agencies are having trouble making sense of the flood of data they collect for intelligence purposes, a point highlighted by President Barack Obama after the attempted bombing of a Detroit-bound passenger flight on Christmas Day.

According to the New York Times, the drones collected nearly three times as much video over Afghanistan and Iraq last year as in 2007, about 24 years' worth if watched continuously. The volume is expected to multiply in the coming years as more drones are being added to the fleet and multiple cameras are to be introduced to shoot different directions.

The Air Force and other military units are now even turning to the television industry to learn how to quickly share video clips and display a mix of data in ways that make analysis faster and easier, the report said.

They are even testing some of the splashier techniques used by broadcasters, like the telestrator that John Madden popularized for scrawling football plays, believing that it could be used to warn troops about a threatening vehicle or circle a compound that a drone should attack, the report added.

"Imagine you are tuning into a football game without all the graphics," the paper quoted Lucius Stone, an executive at Harris Broadcast Communications, a provider of commercial technology that is working with the military, as saying.

"You don't know what the score is. You don't know what the down is. It's just raw video. And that's how the guys in the military have been using it," he added. (ANI)

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