I have been yearning for a long time to be able to at least write a research proposal about what I consider as important problems in developing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). Then, I have been procrastinating what I should have written for a long time too. At last I have managed to write a few pages about my interests in UAVs. The research proposal can be found by following the link below .
I consider it worthwhile to describe this research proposal a little bit. What I would really want to accomplish would be to be able to develop fully autonomous, self-coordinating fleets of UAVs. I am personally bent towards applications of bio-inspired search methodologies, such as evolutionary algorithms, particle swarm optimization and ant colony optimization etc. So the idea is to expose UAV design issues to artificial intelligence schemes.
One more thing that I would like to add is that I personally only interested in civilian applications of such technologies. UAVs have been applied in the past by the U.S. in tribal areas of Pakistan and they have produced lethal results. I am strictly opposed to developing such technologies for military applications. There is no religious book that suggests that. There is not a single verse in Arabic that tells human beings that they should create nuclear weapons or military drones. Having said this, this also puts the onus of responsibility on the larger Muslim society to discourage terrorism. The human society is largely good and many Muslims appreciate this. The ideology should be to live and let live.
I wish that I could work on these ideas with some expert supervision. Pak-US Science & Technology Cooperation Program Phase-VI by the higher education commission of Pakistan invites research proposals from Pakistani researchers. Upon getting approved, the researcher would get a fund of up to USD 500,000 for up to a maximum of three years. A mandatory requirement in that is to work with an American principal investigator.
So if you are an American and know someone who can serve as a principal investigator for this project please get in touch and I shall remain grateful. We might as well develop a great partnership.
As an American, you might be of the view that Pakistan should never get access to such a sophisticated technology. I would like to argue that if you are thinking like this you should abandon this type of thinking. Let me convince you why you should not think like this.
First of all, UAVs are becoming increasingly commonplace in Pakistan. It is not uncommon to see quadcoptors filming political protests on television channels. It is just a matter of time that Pakistan would get other types of UAVs for more classified applications. So if you think that by not collaborating on this project you are actually prohibiting Pakistan from getting a cutting edge technology, you are surely mistaken.
But this is rather a bad way to convince someone to help on a research project. It is not decent and elegant to say the least. Moreover, this is also not an offer you can’t refuse. So let me try another argument.
I am particularly interested in developing UAVs for civilian applications. An American joining this project would definitely have an element of goodwill involved in it. It would definitely create an air of cooperation and friendship. Moreover, by joining such a project you can always try to convince people about ideas that you consider important. For instance, we can preach our ideas about human consciousness as a side business. This, I think, is a really good idea.
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