Computers/Expert Software/Intelligent Weapons

nats

Banded Mongoose
It says (page 92) that to run a piece of Expert software (min rating of 1) you have to also run Intelligent Interface (rating of 1). This would seem to indicate that you would require a minimum of a Computer/2 to run both programs simultaneously but several instances seem to contradict this in the Core Rule Book:

Intelligent Weapon either allows Computer/0 or /1 but neither on the face of it would seem to allow an Expert program to run despite what the custom gun example states on page 102. In fact Computer/0 would only allow you to run a single 0 rated program according to the computer rules on page 91 so this would only allow you to run Database, Interface, Security, Translator or Agent software - none of which would be any use at all to have on a weapon I would propose. Even an Intelligent Weapon with Computer/1 would not allow you to use Expert software which IMO is the ONLY type of software you would actually want to run on an intelligent weapon.

Specialised Computer on page 92 mentions in the example that a Computer/1 would enable you to run an Expert program at a higher than usual rating but it seems to be forgetting again that you would also require an Intelligent Interface which would not fit onto a Computer/1 along with an Expert program.

How do you lot see this as working? Would you assume that both of the examples above (Specialised Computer and Intelligent Weapon) have an integrated Intelligent Interface built into the computer/weapon at no extra cost or space like the wafer jack does? Seems to me the only way to get around these inconsistencies in the computer rules.

Of course it still doesn't explain what the hell the point is of getting an Intelligent Weapon Computer/0 upgrade for Cr1000!! I cant see anyone wanting to use a gun as a translator or a database. The only program that would make any sense on such a gun is the security program, if the weapon also had a secure weapon upgrade, which would make hacking into the protection more difficult. But its a lot of money to pay for something so limited especially when the secure weapon upgrade only costs Cr100 and sounds pretty unhackable as it stands. Again one would seem to think that the only point in having an intelligent weapon is one that can assist you in firing it and this wouldnt allow that at all.

And as for the example of Morn's custom weapon! - since when could a gun being able to fire on its own be useful when there is no way it could actually see or sense anything? Surely it would need some sort of visual sensor linked to the intellect program to be of any use? And I cant see anything like that mentioned. Last time I looked laser sights and the such are not able to recognise shapes certainly not enough to distinguish between enemy and friend! Daft. And dont get me started on how the recoil would be treated if the gun fired on its own - more likely to be a liability for shooting all the characters in the back with autofire than anything else!

Am I taking this stuff too literally? Or does it just not work?
 
My take on this is that by the time you hit tech 12 computer processing power is so high that you have no real limits with running programs at once.

Not sure if this was errat'd anywhere but it did use to be that the power of a computer was all that it could run. This was changed to being the highest program rating it could run but with out limit as to numbers of programs.

So your ships computer 2(bis) can run fire control 2 and manouvre and also plot a jump 3 while dodging incoming corsair shots. You cannot run anything with a higher rating but you can, within reason, run multiple programs at once.

Your computer 1 gun or computer 3 battledress can run an inteligent interface and expert software and an ecm suite and a tactics pack all at the same time as long as they are at or below the computers rating.

You can say it takes a computer 2 to run a pair of rating 1 programs if you like but that makes the OTU computers sadly lacking and the software very badly written. Maybe they still use windows base software with 10G of program and 200G or patches, addons and filler.
 
I would treat the computer of an intelligent weapon as a
specialized computer with an intelligent interface and an
expert program, allowing a Computer/1 to run both pro-
grams simultaneously, for an additional cost of 25 %.

Edit.:
As I read it, the last sentence of the description of specia-
lized computers states that the program the computer is
specialized on is not counted among the number of pro-
grams the computer can run at the same time - at least
that is what it says in the German version.
 
rust said:
I would treat the computer of an intelligent weapon as a
specialized computer with an intelligent interface and an
expert program, allowing a Computer/1 to run both pro-
grams simultaneously, for an additional cost of 25 %.

Yeah well I guess the only way is to have it that the computer rating determines the max rating and not how many programs it can run simultaneously.

Still doesnt make the Intelligent Weapon with Computer/0 any better though it still cant handle an Expert program.
 
In my view an intelligent weapon with a Computer/0 is rather
nonsensical, because then the requirements for all the other
"intelligent" programs (interface, expert, etc.) would be too
high. But I have to admit that I am not convinced of the enti-
re concept of intelligent weapons below the level of autono-
mous vehicles or robots, with targeting systems and at least
a limited mobility. To me an intelligent handgun seems a ri-
diculous idea, far more the stuff of fantasy than of science
fiction.
 
Well aside from acting like a HUD and improving aim how exactly does it fire itself, its not like it floats and turns itself. Or does it :shock:

Yes I know it fires itself at the presise instant that it is on target rather than waiting for the meat sack to press the firing stud but if the gun is not actualy pointed at the targets becasue said meat sack is waving it all over the place its rather useless.
 
Yep, and imagine something like a hostage situation - how
does it determine which of the potential targets in front of
it is the criminal and which is the innocent hostage ?

I suspect that early versions of intelligent handguns would
become infamous for the collateral damage they cause ...
 
Captain Jonah said:
Well aside from acting like a HUD and improving aim how exactly does it fire itself, its not like it floats and turns itself. Or does it :shock:

Yes I know it fires itself at the presise instant that it is on target rather than waiting for the meat sack to press the firing stud but if the gun is not actualy pointed at the targets becasue said meat sack is waving it all over the place its rather useless.

I suppose it could use gyroscopes to turn the weapon in a slight direction in order to improve your aim or allow for improved long shots when the weapon encourages the user to fire at a certain elevation determined by the range from a laser sight/wind etc much the same as adding gyroscopic stability steadies a gun. And an intelligent sword might use the same gyroscopes to enhance a swing power/ accuracy. I suppose the cost for adding the intelligent weapon interface should be assumed to include for video/IR sensors and gyroscopes etc as standard - might make sense. Would have to be bloody small though.
 
rust said:
Yep, and imagine something like a hostage situation - how
does it determine which of the potential targets in front of
it is the criminal and which is the innocent hostage ?

I suspect that early versions of intelligent handguns would
become infamous for the collateral damage they cause ...

The computer would have had to be fed details of the hostages appearances beforehand - could be done using a HUD data display to record the likenesses, neural linked to the intelligent weapon? Or are we getting carried away now?
 
You start with Computer/1 on the gun. You turn it into a specialised computer, which basically makes it Computer/3 but you can't change the programs built into it.

You then give it Intellect/1 and Expert/2. It doesn't need Intelligent Interface because the user isn't using the Expert program - the Intellect program is. The gun now automatically adjusts its targeting system, recoil etc to maximise the user's chance to hit.
 
nats said:
The computer would have had to be fed details of the hostages appearances beforehand - could be done using a HUD data display to record the likenesses, neural linked to the intelligent weapon? Or are we getting carried away now?
While I think that it could be technically possible, it seems
to me that it would save lots of time and money (and po-
tentially lives) to leave the decisions which require intelli-
gence to the person holding the weapon instead of to the
weapon, at least the choice of the target and the timing of
the weapon's fire, while the weapon would only handle the
physical problems (distance, environment, etc.) created by
the person's decisions - but then I would find it difficult to
call this an "intelligent" weapon, compared for example to a
combat robot.
 
rust said:
nats said:
The computer would have had to be fed details of the hostages appearances beforehand - could be done using a HUD data display to record the likenesses, neural linked to the intelligent weapon? Or are we getting carried away now?
While I think that it could be technically possible, it seems
to me that it would save lots of time and money (and po-
tentially lives) to leave the decisions which require intelli-
gence to the person holding the weapon instead of to the
weapon, at least the choice of the target and the timing of
the weapon's fire, while the weapon would only handle the
physical problems (distance, environment, etc.) created by
the person's decisions - but then I would find it difficult to
call this an "intelligent" weapon, compared for example to a
combat robot.

Well I would see the limits of an intelligent weapon being able to stop the user shooting at friendlies, and enhance his shooting at enemies. I dont think ayone would want to leave the actual shooting decision to a computer. Same as these days - most planes are quite capable of taking off, flying the route and landing themselves without any human intervention, but pilots always do the take off and landing themselves.
 
Mytholder said:
You start with Computer/1 on the gun. You turn it into a specialised computer, which basically makes it Computer/3 but you can't change the programs built into it.

You then give it Intellect/1 and Expert/2. It doesn't need Intelligent Interface because the user isn't using the Expert program - the Intellect program is. The gun now automatically adjusts its targeting system, recoil etc to maximise the user's chance to hit.

Yes we know how it works for a comp/1 we were debating the use of the comp/0. I see what you mean about not needing a Interface if using an Intellect program instead but that doesnt change the inability of the comp/0 smart weapon to use anything much of any use. I think I will just change my Intelligent Weapon options to Comp/1 and Comp/2 instead - much more sensible.
 
Computer/0 for a weapon allows for voice control and visual feedback as a Specialized Computer/Intelligent Interface. It could also be used to make a weapon a hackers tool (Agent-2 max) - that being its limit as an 'expert system'. A 'database' weapon could also have some specialized use (alien anatomy could give +1 DM, for example based on task check rules).

That is how I saw its purpose, though I think it should have been spelled out. The example on pg 102 covers the other pretty well (and is what gave me the notion regards Computer/0).

As to the actual functionality... typically game mechanics for play in tabletop RPGs implicitly require some 'intelligent implementation'. Just because a literal interpretation of the RAW might imply a gun moves itself, obviously it will need some method to do so - if that is allowed by its designer and the referee.

There are plenty of fictional method for that: pure magical fantasy; soft sci-fi (er, gravitics ala Traveller :p ); or, something more limited in any given environment, like ambulatory limbs, micro-thrusters, memory metals, etc. that exist in the real world even if not practically in a weapon (i.e. hard sci-fi - not a common aspect of official Traveller material, of course :p ).
 
nats said:
Intelligent Weapon either allows Computer/0 or /1 but neither on the face of it would seem to allow an Expert program to run despite what the custom gun example states on page 102. In fact Computer/0 would only allow you to run a single 0 rated program according to the computer rules on page 91 so this would only allow you to run Database, Interface, Security, Translator or Agent software - none of which would be any use at all to have on a weapon I would propose. Even an Intelligent Weapon with Computer/1 would not allow you to use Expert software which IMO is the ONLY type of software you would actually want to run on an intelligent weapon.

Your weapon running Translator could be keeping the enemies pinned down while insulting them in multiple languages, keeping their attention focused on the weapons position while you sneak around and flank them.
 
AndrewW said:
...

Your weapon running Translator could be keeping the enemies pinned down while insulting them in multiple languages, keeping their attention focused on the weapons position while you sneak around and flank them.

heh :)

New from the makers of Talkie Toaster that made breakfast and bread snacking more engaging comes Gabby Gun! Now your gun can literally talk your enemies to death!

"Hi there, thanks for choosing me to be your sidearm today. Who are we fighting? Hey I'm a little low on bullets, we should stop by the armoury on the way out. There's a cute rifle I'd like to chat up while we're there anyway. You know you should really clean me first, I'm looking a little shabby. And I saw these neat new grips on the web last night. They not only look good, they will feel good for you, and they were on sale for just Cr99 plus shipping and handling! I took the liberty of ordering them and charging them to your account. You should really think about a new holster too, this old one is so last season. Black ballistic weave? Seriously? How about something bright for spring? Hey! Aren't you forgetting something? Where are you going?! I'm still here, how are you going to fight if you leave me behind???..."
 
:lol:

Though they really wouldn't have to be very 'intelligent' to be annoying. Sometimes, its all about timing - like, just before 'combat ends':

  • "Zero bullets remaining. Please reload. Zero bullets remaining. Please reload..."
 
"Attention citizen, this is the autogunner mk 17 program. Your attempts to fire this weapon without clear reason are a violation of the local legal code. Bio monitors indicate you are uninjured and so cannot make a case for self defence. In accordance with local firearms regulations my software has disabled the electronic firing controls of this weapon until such time as you can prove self defence or until weapon fire is authorised by a designated representative of law enforcement. Have a nice day".
 
the more complex it is, the more parts there are that break, and the more troublesome it is when it does break, and the more inconvenient the timing when it breaks, and the harder it is to repair, and more expensive to repair, and the harder to find parts, and the more likely it is to have buggy software, and the more likely that someone will make cheap-a$$ knockoffs, and a bigger maintenance headache , the failure to do such maintenance makes breakage more likely to occur.
And incompatibility without maintenance patches/upgrades... in the field... possibly entering dependency hell or hardware upgrades ( needs more memory or causes the VR scope site attachment to lock up/crash or hacked )
 
I can't do that Dave, you fitted me with this cheap knockoff part that is malfunctioning.
 
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