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DARPA's Latest Grand Challenge Takes On The Radio Spectrum (gizmag.com) 64

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Gizmag: One of the most hotly contested bits of real estate today is one you can't see. As we move into an increasingly wireless-connected world, staking out a piece of the crowded electromagnetic spectrum becomes more important. DARPA is hoping to help solve this issue with its latest Grand Challenge, which calls for the use of machine-learning technologies to enable devices to share bandwidth. The Spectrum Collaboration Challenge (SC2) is based on the idea that wireless devices would work better if they cooperated with one another rather than fought for bandwidth. Since not all devices are active at all times, the agency says, it should be possible through the use of artificial intelligence machine-learning algorithms to allow them to figure out how to share the spectrum with a minimum of conflict. DARPA announced the competition in front of 8000 engineers on Wednesday at the International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE) in Las Vegas. SC2 will run from 2017 through 2020 with teams competing to create radios that can collaborate most effectively with other radios. The competition will end with a live event and the prize is $2 million.
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DARPA's Latest Grand Challenge Takes On The Radio Spectrum

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  • Perhaps the Tay-based devices can give preference to the wireless devices with blue LEDs.
  • Maybe you could combine this with their other project they recently announced [slashdot.org] and create a weaponized AI that does its best to subvert their desired outcome.
  • wasn't that the Evil on Man from UNCLE?
    • wasn't that the Evil on Man from UNCLE?

      The evil group on Man from U.N.C.L.E. was T.H.R.U.S.H.(*)

      Perhaps you are thinking of S.P.E.C.T.R.E.(**), the evil group in the James Bond series?

      (Or was there a major character in the series I'm missing?)

      (*) Technological Hierarchy for the Removal of Undesirables and the Subjugation of Humanity.
      (**) SPecial Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion

      • SPECTRUM? SPECTRE? THRUSH?

        Pthhhhh. Amateurs.

        We don't share bandwidth in KAOS (a Delaware Corporation).

        We don't share any-ting!

        So give me my lunch back, Starker!!

    • SPECTRUM are the good guys in Captain Scarlett. They used the phrase "SIG" to indicate that "Spectrum is green"

         

  • The key technology we need to unlock massive amounts of radio spectrum is directional radio links. Then you can have thousands of devices talking on the same frequency at the same time in the same area, without any interference. It's like how you can have dozens of billboards along the highway, without drowning each other out. You just look at the signal source you want to hear and ignore the rest.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      They already do that. [wikipedia.org]

    • Billboards are many meters wide and operate at 545 THz. Its pretty easy to get purely directional signals when you have such extreme scale differences (18 million : 1 ) between the "antenna" (10m) and the frequency (550nm). Your statement "without any interference" falls apart pretty quickly in most radio applications where the antenna size is often a fraction of the wavelength. Check out the plots in this online EE text: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/ele... [mit.edu] .
  • tiket pesawat dengan harga murah kilik tiket pesawat [tiketturindo.com]
  • without having to pay for the research. I am getting the feeling lately that the government is slowly getting left out in the cold.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      No, they want to pay $2M to the people who do the best research.

      These "challenges" are very economically efficient for the offering group. They offer $X and typically the total amount of effort put into it is well over $X. Like if you have 10 groups each putting in $1M of R&D to earn $2M. Only one of them get the $2M but DARPA gets to choose from $10M worth of ideas so to speak.

      • Well, to be more specific then, I meant the residual licensing from the protocol after it is fleshed out and established. Since this aims to be a long term solution the payoff in licensing would be enormous. And I am sure that the FCC will have no qualms making it all gel just right.
        • by Anonymous Coward

          If the rules are anything like the last spectrum challenge ( http://archive.darpa.mil/spectrumchallenge/Rules.html ), then contestants own all of the IP they generated, including algorithms and no assignment is made to darpa or public domain. The idea isn't to force a spec out of it, it's to get a lot of big players thinking about spectral efficiency and how to work that into their products or research.

  • They moved to directed energy so each device can share the same spectrum at the same time. DARPA invented the technology that allows it called phased arrays.
    DrRobertDuncan com [drrobertduncan.com]

  • by liquid_schwartz ( 530085 ) on Tuesday March 29, 2016 @01:29AM (#51798081)
    Many areas use whoever had the first claim to the local water supply for a given area as the basis for who gets that water. Not what does the greatest good, not what makes the most economic sense, but merely the first to file. Then this right is locked in. The radio spectrum is similar however unlike water which is a local problem this causes problems for much of the globe. Think of the convenience of having most of the globe use 2.4GHz. Make a device once, use it anywhere. How grand. However things could be *much* better if more bandwidth was available globally. That's why I liken it to water rights - another archaic system but one that people more often understand. Here's a chart that shows how spectrum is allocated in the US for those who are curious: https://www.ntia.doc.gov/files... [doc.gov]
    • There's a simple means used to allocate spectrum:
      1. Government agencies get first claim.
      2. What's left is sold to the highest commercial bidder.
      3. The bits that no company wants are made available unlicensed, and the public are expected to be grateful that the government honors the ITU suggestions for ISM bands.

  • by recharged95 ( 782975 ) on Tuesday March 29, 2016 @02:28AM (#51798223) Journal

    But the rest of the world and considering illegal frequencies being used around the US will make this problem harder than one thinks.

    So you come up with a great solution for 900Mhz, problem is you can't use it in the EU or Asia. Or how about 433? nope, more conflicts outside the US.

    Then there's the 1W vs 25mW (rest of the world) requirement....

    Not only is this a tech and regulation problem, it's a frequency management and standards nightmare.

    At least you can drive a DARPA challenge car or a biped robot in pretty much any country without conflicting tech (but conflicting regs).

    • by sociocapitalist ( 2471722 ) on Tuesday March 29, 2016 @03:21AM (#51798355)

      But the rest of the world and considering illegal frequencies being used around the US will make this problem harder than one thinks.

      So you come up with a great solution for 900Mhz, problem is you can't use it in the EU or Asia. Or how about 433? nope, more conflicts outside the US.

      Then there's the 1W vs 25mW (rest of the world) requirement....

      Not only is this a tech and regulation problem, it's a frequency management and standards nightmare.

      At least you can drive a DARPA challenge car or a biped robot in pretty much any country without conflicting tech (but conflicting regs).

      They're looking for a mechanism to share bandwidth intelligently. There is nothing specific to frequencies or power handling in how bandwidth might be shared so the result should be usable regardless of local variations on implementation.

  • I can't wait to watch this competition unfold live on YouTube!

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