The Department of Defense has released remarkable footage showcasing a project aimed at creating a swarm of micro-drones that act autonomously.
The video comes from a test of the concept which took place back in October when three jets released over 100 six-inch-long UAVs known as Perdix drones.
Incredibly, the tiny flying devices are not individually operated and, instead, work together collectively in a fashion akin to insects in nature.
Once released into the air, the drones exchange information amongst each other with the goal of completing their mission with almost no human input beyond an initial instruction.
Pentagon officials say that the purpose of a drone swarm would be to collect surveillance information rather than be used as an offensive weapon, although such a scenario is a possibility.
The almost-autonomous nature of the drone swarm is sure to raise concerns among academics and activists who have cautioned that the emergence of such technology could spell disaster for humans if it becomes out of control.
Indeed, seeing the drone swarm in action conjures worrisome visions of a modern re-imagining of Hitchcock’s infamous Birds only with tiny UAVs tormenting people on the ground.