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The defence domain is about to be completely disrupted by the rise of intelligent machines. Unlike older programmable computers these machines do not give the same output for the same input every time. Instead, like you, these artificial intelligences continually learn, evolve ‘on the job’ and display emergent behaviours that may surprise, for good or bad.

Artificial intelligence technologies will disrupt warfighters and warfighting, ushering in algorithmic warfare and irrevocably changing our operational art and the character of war. Our fifth generation information-sharing battle networks seem set to morph into active fighting networks with machine-speed hyperwar and massed intelligent swarms.    

Successfully using these smart machines will need even smarter humans. Intelligent machines are simultaneously powerful and brittle, brilliant and childlike, dazzling and incomprehensible. Their application to warfighting will need to be undertaken carefully, prudently and realistically. This book aims to help that process. The age of algorithmic warfare has arrived. We need to get smarter—and quickly.

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