Your Tax Dollars At Work: Laser Guided Bullets

Sandia labs Laser Guided Bullett
Sandia labs Laser Guided Bullett
The four-inch-long bullet has actuators that steer tiny fins that guide it to its target. Photo by Randy Montoya from Sandia Labs

Sandia Labs scientists had developed laser guided bullets. Really they are mini guided missals.

Sandia’s design for the four-inch-long bullet includes an optical sensor in the nose to detect a laser beam on a target. The sensor sends information to guidance and control electronics that use an algorithm in an eight-bit central processing unit to command electromagnetic actuators. These actuators steer tiny fins that guide the bullet to the target.

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FTC Sues Intel

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The US Federal Trade Commssion is joining the EU and going after Intel on antitrust charges. Updated: link and text changed to the FTC’s website.

The Federal Trade Commission today sued Intel Corp., the world’s leading computer chip maker, charging that the company has illegally used its dominant market position for a decade to stifle competition and strengthen its monopoly.

In its complaint, the FTC alleges that Intel has waged a systematic campaign to shut out rivals’ competing microchips by cutting off their access to the marketplace. In the process, Intel deprived consumers of choice and innovation in the microchips that comprise the computers’ central processing unit, or CPU. These chips are critical components that often are referred to as the “brains” of a computer.

Intel responds. Updated: Link changed to Intel’s official press release.

“Intel has competed fairly and lawfully. Its actions have benefitted consumers. The highly competitive microprocessor industry, of which Intel is a key part, has kept innovation robust and prices declining at a faster rate than any other industry. The FTC’s case is misguided. It is based largely on claims that the FTC added at the last minute and has not investigated. In addition, it is explicitly not based on existing law but is instead intended to make new rules for regulating business conduct. These new rules would harm consumers by reducing innovation and raising prices.”