Researchers have taken a major step in bringing chatbots to life.
Chinese scientists have developed a fleet of intelligent drones that can communicate with each other like individual decision makers. The drones can converse and collaborate with each other like humans.
Traditionally drone fleets behave like bee and ant colonies. This means that they work in a hierarchical fashion where soldiers are directed by entities at a higher level. These new drones work and communicate like equals.
They are capable of human-like dialogue interaction and autonomous entity control. They have proactive environmental awareness, with an ability to control flight status in real time according to environmental feedback. They communicate using natural language leveraging an open-source large language model InternLM. The drones independently divide tasks based on their individual capabilities.
In a particular 5 drones’ experiment to locate a set of keys from an outdoor park, 3 drones offered search capabilities and the other two volunteered to retrieve keys as they were equipped with grippers. They even shared images through group chats for confirmation.
The conversational drones have complete transparency in terms of decision making processes. This would help researchers to understand and improve their decision-making for being future ready and safe.
This is a significant breakthrough in drone technology. This will enhance surveillance, improving disaster rescue and relief operations, security patrols, aerial logistics and otherwise impossible geographic mapping etc.
The technology has been developed by LI Xuelong and his teams at the School of Artificial Intelligence, Optics, and Electronics at Northwestern Polytechnical University in Shaanxi province.