Defense Advanced Research Projects AgencyTagged Content List

Analytics for Data at Massive Scales

Extracting information from large data sets

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A new program out of DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office could help the Department of Defense enhance and sustain military readiness both by revolutionizing how troops train, perform, and recover, and by mitigating shortages of highly qualified candidates for extremely specialized roles. The anticipated outputs of the Measuring Biological Aptitude (MBA) program are a set of biomarkers — measurable indicators of biological processes — that correspond to traits of highly effective performance in a given role, along with new tools to measure and report on those biomarkers in real time.
February 12, 2019,
Executive Conference Center
The Biological Technologies Office is holding a Proposers Day meeting to provide information to potential proposers on the objectives of the new Measuring Biological Aptitude (MBA) program. MBA aims to improve how the individual warfighter identifies, measures, and tracks personalized biomarkers throughout his or her career to help achieve new levels of performance for specialized roles. MBA technologies could improve training, team formation, mission performance, and post-mission recovery, yielding a better prepared, more effective, more resilient force.
Training, which is conducted in classroom, field, and virtual settings, is a critical element of military readiness. Large-scale social networks, interactive content, and ubiquitous mobile access are emerging as driving technologies in education and training. At the same time, education analytics presents new opportunities for assessing the effectiveness of training strategies, understanding trends and effects in large volumes of education data, and relating these back to alternative modes of instruction.
Military and civilian organizations have deep interest in human performance optimization (HPO). A key challenge for optimizing human performance, however, is the “tyranny of averages:” a common experimental approach that uses between-subject outcomes and group averages (means) to make conclusions about the efficacy of a given intervention.
Program Manager
Dr. Bartlett Russell joined DARPA as a program manager in April of 2019. Her work focuses on understanding the variability of human cognitive and social behavior to enable the decision-maker, improve analytics, and generate autonomous and AI systems that enable human adaptability. Prior to joining DARPA, Russell was a senior program manager and lead of the human systems and autonomy research area in Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Laboratories.