Defense Advanced Research Projects AgencyTagged Content List

Software Programming

Pushing the boundaries of computer coding, including language development

Showing 5 results for Programming + Trust RSS
03/06/2014
During the past decade information technologies have driven the productivity gains essential to U.S. economic competitiveness, and computing systems now control significant elements of critical national infrastructure. As a result, tremendous resources are devoted to ensuring that programs are correct, especially at scale. Unfortunately, in spite of developers’ best efforts, software errors are at the root of most execution errors and security vulnerabilities.
10/14/2019
There are a vast number of diverse computing devices used to run the critical infrastructure our national security depends on – from transportation systems to electric grids to industrial equipment. Much like commercial or personal computing devices, these systems utilize embedded software to execute and manage their operations. To fix certain security vulnerabilities, commercial and personal devices must undergo frequent updates, and are replaced every few years – or on occasion, more frequently when an update fails. Mission-critical systems are built to last for decades, and rarely have the same short upgrade cycles.
Dramatic success in machine learning has led to a torrent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications. Continued advances promise to produce autonomous systems that will perceive, learn, decide, and act on their own. However, the effectiveness of these systems is limited by the machine’s current inability to explain their decisions and actions to human users (Figure 1). The Department of Defense (DoD) is facing challenges that demand more intelligent, autonomous, and symbiotic systems. Explainable AI—especially explainable machine learning—will be essential if future warfighters are to understand, appropriately trust, and effectively manage an emerging generation of artificially intelligent machine partners.
As computing devices become more pervasive, the software systems that control them have become increasingly more complex and sophisticated. Consequently, despite the tremendous resources devoted to making software more robust and resilient, ensuring that programs are correct—especially at scale—remains a difficult and challenging endeavor. Unfortunately, uncaught errors triggered during program execution can lead to potentially crippling security violations, unexpected runtime failure or unintended behavior, all of which can have profound negative consequences on economic productivity, reliability of mission-critical systems, and correct operation of important and sensitive cyber infrastructure.
Office Director
Dr. William Scherlis assumed the role of office director for DARPA’s Information Innovation Office (I2O) in September 2019. In this role he leads program managers in the development of programs, technologies, and capabilities to ensure information advantage for the United States and its allies, and coordinates this work across the Department of Defense and U.S. government.