Last September, we mentioned South Korea’s plans to install several sentry robots along its border with North Korea due to the diminishing numbers of troops available to patrol the DMZ. The SGR-A1 robot is developed jointly by the Korea University and Samsung Techwin Co. The latter has released a promotional video showcasing the robot’s capabilities. The video shows how the robot tracks its target during the day and night and its ability to shoot at targets that do not respond to an initial verbal warning. I don’t speak Korean so I don’t understand what it is said in the video; however, it would appear that the robot can verbally command an enemy target to surrender which is indicated by the soldier’s arms held high. The robot can recognize this gesture and not fire. If the person does not comply then, as shown in the video, the SGR-A1 can be very effective in eliminating the target. I find the application of current tracking and gesture recognition technologies for military applications such as the SGR-A1 very disturbing. I think the possibility of misrecognition by the robot can have unfortunate consequences. I hope that there is a remote operator who is alarmed when the robot detects enemy movement and that it can be instructed not to fire unless the operator can verify the situation. That said, you can watch the video and draw your own conclusions.