DARPA wants 'pre-crime' technology

New program seeks to find troubled soldiers

In the Tom Cruise film “Minority Report,” specially trained agents detect and arrest criminals before they commit their crimes.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is seeking algorithms that will allow it to do something similar, according to Wired’s "Danger Room" blog. But instead of finding criminals among the general population, DARPA wants to find troops at risk of endangering themselves or their compatriots.

Recent incidents such as the fatal shootings at Fort Hood and the release of classified information via WikiLeaks has some military leaders on edge.

“The idea behind the Anomaly Detection at Multiple Scales, or ADAMS, effort is to sift through ‘massive datasets’ to find the warning signs of looming homicide, suicide or other destructive behavior,” writes Spencer Ackerman for "Danger Room."

He goes on to quote a DARPA statement: “The focus is on malevolent insiders that started out as ‘good guys.’ The specific goal of [ADAMS] is to detect anomalous behaviors before or shortly after they turn.”

What the signs of such a person would be or how technology might detect them in data patterns isn’t clear. An industry day to be held Oct. 19 at System Planning Corp. in Arlington, Va., might answer some of those questions.

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