It seems that a war zone, due to the military efforts of organizations such as the DARPA Agency, had partially moved from the hot deserts and tropical jungles to cyberspace. «Plan X» project involves computer technologies.
Experts from DARPA are going to display the digital reality as a 3D-model, in which soldiers will be able to plunge with the help of virtual reality headset, Oculus Rift. If analogy is drawn and the situation is theoretically simulated, it would be enough to recall the fantastic movies. It was there that a similar scenario is repeated. A rather old cyberpunk movie “Johnny Mnemonic”, where the hero ran three-dimensional interface using virtual reality headset, would be quite up-to-date and real nowadays.
The most significant task for DARPA is not only to unify the hacker battles, reducing the number of participants in hacking software specialists, but also remove a chain of elements such as a keyboard and a computer mouse. A key aspect, according to Frank Pound, project manager, becomes a person’s ability to improvise in critical situations without the need to focus on additional manipulators. For all other conditions a thoughtful and flexible interface of the new program will be responsible for.
For «Plan X» the basic concept can be described in a following way: the developers’ task is to simulate a classic military operation and battle in the real world, for dealing with which the soldiers are trained, and try to recreate them in a three-dimensional cyberspace, replacing armed enemy with hacker, small arms and equipment with the code and combat skills and weapons possession with virtual teams and movements.
In addition to the virtual reality headset U.S. Department of Defense is developing a holographic touch table that can project real-time three-dimensional holographic image that does not require the use of special glasses or other devices. The objectives of the “smart table” will include visualization of computer networks, geographic areas with information about the location of army units and many other functions that are relevant during the group briefings and remote conferencing.
Besides, availability and intuitive principles of work will become not just priorities, but the basic aspects of the program, because the participants of the «Plan X» will be not professional hackers with experience and relevant skills, but the ordinary soldiers of various paramilitary.
Frank Pound also said that the software would support simultaneous operation of 300 000 users, and the system simply must be at the disposal of each military base, information centers aboard ships, as well as tactical operational centers.
An approximate date of the demonstration of the program to the representatives of the Defence Ministry and members of the U.S. Cyber Command of U.S. Army is scheduled for October 2017.
However, it should be noted immediately that the project can remain only as a concept. According to preliminary information, the Ministry sharply reduced the amount of funds allocated for the development of advanced software, so DARPA has 8 months for demonstrating at least a preliminary conceptual model of its ideas.