IARPA in the News 2014

The Conversation

Graphene – an atom-thick sheet of carbon – has been touted as a new wonder material: it is stronger than steel and conducts electricity better than copper.

In the journal Nature Nanotechnology today, my colleagues and I show how graphene can be used to build a detector of long wavelength (far infrared or terahertz) light that is as sensitive as any existing detector, but far smaller and more than a million times faster. The detector could improve night-vision goggles, chemical analysis tools and airport body scanners.

Wall Street Journal

Analysts for the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency and more than a dozen other government organizations depend on their ability to forecast national and global events to help ward off various threats to the country, but old-style approaches can produce flawed results.

To improve quality, the government has taken the unusual step of running tournaments that invite people outside the intelligence community to develop better ways to forecast world events, and several have produced notable results.


Financial Times

Billions of dollars are spent on experts who claim they can forecast what’s around the corner, in business, finance and economics. Most of them get it wrong. Now a groundbreaking study has unlocked the secret: it IS possible to predict the future – and a new breed of ‘superforecasters’ knows how to do it....

The entire exercise was given the name of the Good Judgment Project, and the aim was to find better ways to see into the future.

The early years of the forecasting tournament have, wrote Tetlock, “already yielded exciting results”....

The Chronicle of Higher Education

Around about 2005, you couldn’t shake a stick in Washington without hitting a political consultant who was focus-grouping your stick-shaking metaphor to see whether it provided better "framing" than his opponent’s. The inspiration for the framing craze, George Lakoff’s book Don’t Think of an Elephant!, argued that the Democrats lost in 2004 because they ignored the importance of frames: subconscious structures that determine why people vote the way they do, and that can be activated through abstract linguistic triggers like "family values" or "death tax."

Business Solutions

Video analytics—the automated analysis of terabytes of video content—has a proven track record helping investigators to glean information from surveillance cameras, recognize faces in a crowd, or zoom in on the license plates of suspects. However, researchers know they need more advanced capabilities and software algorithms to go beyond detection and tracking and really understand the relationships between objects in video footage.