IEEE reports in related news that the data deluge from these UAV’s is likely to get worse.
By next year, a single new Reaper drone will record 10 video feeds at once, and the Air Force plans to eventually upgrade that number to 65. John Rush, chief of the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Division of the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, projects that it would take an untenable 16 000 analysts to study the video footage from UAVs and other airborne surveillance systems.
The best—and perhaps only—way forward is to have a computer watch it all. But programming a system to automatically search video and pick out noteworthy information is not an easy problem. And so far, no one has developed software that can keep up with the military’s high-tech hardware.