The technology of warfare, whether modern or ancient, has always fascinated me. The sheer creativity of many weapons, vehicles, and accessories has only increased with the addition of robotics technology to machines of war. Drones are incredible devices that contain an artificial intelligence that is capable of making basic human decisions, but this awesome ability creates complex questions regarding the morality of pitting machines against humans in a fight to the death, particularly with the limitations of understanding that drone intelligence has placed upon it. Therefore, I decided to attempt to answer, or at the very least call to attention, these questions, as such technology has the capability of changing the face of warfare for decades to come. I created the Personal Learning Network utilizing various forms of social media: Twitter, Google Docs, etc. but also integrating real life sources such as my Engineering professor, who runs a surveillance drone business, and Tampa Brass and Aluminum, a metalworking company I once worked an internship at. By examining these sources, I was able to find multiple compelling articles on drones, raging from historical R.C. planes in World War I to internet conspiracies of U.S. police forces targeting wanted men with laser-guided missiles (which is false. Seriously.), which I incorporated into my blog and personally analyzed in order to create a compelling argument for readers. As an addition, I also added two videos that portrayed the wide variety of drones used by today’s militaries, as well as a comparison of drone portrayal in video games to real life. Continuing to search through more academic pieces, I found three journal entries that proved to be excellent examples of the lack of legal precedent in modern international law regarding drone technology, and I based an Academic Synthesis on the similar imagery found in each particular article. These three articles all could be traced back to one source that is used for nearly all military law; the Geneva Conventions of 1949. In my final paper, I argued that the Geneva Conventions are not adequate by themselves at describing the situations that take place in a combat scenario between drones and humans, and that the Conventions should either be updated or replaced entirely with a new code of law that takes into account modern technology.
Major Assignments and Overview