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Sniping Could Be the Next Killer iPod App 461

Posted by samzenpus
from the pull-up-your-kill-list dept.
An anonymous Coward writes "Knights Armament Corp. who supply sniper rifles to the US military have developed a iPod Touch mounting system and software for the US Army M110 sniper rifle system. The use of off the shelf hardware no doubt cut costs and allowed rapid development of this system." If it automatically played a theme song after every head shot, this would be the coolest rifle accessory ever.

*

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Sniping Could Be the Next Killer iPod App

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  • More gear! (Score:3, Funny)

    by barneco (1353761) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:33PM (#26535415)
    Forget my aimpoint and NV gear...hook me up with the FLIR-enabled Ipod!
  • Oblig (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:35PM (#26535459)

    MMMONSTER KILL

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:37PM (#26535527)

    Photo face recognition can help you identify who you just shot!

  • Killer App (Score:2, Funny)

    by whisper_jeff (680366)
    So this really is a killer app...
  • by nweaver (113078) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:38PM (#26535555) Homepage

    The Knights Armaments [knightarmco.com] page on both the software and the mounting system.

    Really allows you to reach out and touch someone with your iphone.

    • No, no, no. Don't use the iphone, only the ipod touch! If you use the iphone, the ZOG/NWO/UN killdrone occupation forces will be able to track you through AT&T's cell network. Only the touch is Patriot-Safe(tm).
  • Out of line (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ktappe (747125) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:39PM (#26535581)

    If it automatically played a theme song after every head shot, this would be the coolest rifle accessory ever.

    Am I the only one who found this attempt at humor disturbing and objectionable?

    (And yes, I know my comment will get me modded down, but I strongly doubt I'm alone in thinking a real life killing is quite different from killing in an FPS.)

    • by Lightwarrior (73124) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:44PM (#26535707) Journal

      Yeah, I also found it tasteless. Center-of-mass hits are much more reliable than head shots.

      • Re:Out of line (Score:5, Insightful)

        by DaveAtFraud (460127) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @05:24PM (#26537671) Homepage Journal

        Center-of-mass hits are much more reliable than head shots.

        Yeah, but a head shot with a "pink cloud" is a confirmed kill. If the target is worth sending a sniper and you only get one shot, go for the sure thing.

        Cheers,
        Dave

        • by Dareth (47614)

          For sniping regular run of the mill soldiers, the perfect sniping shot is thru both butt cheeks.

          Requires 1-2 soldiers to carry guy off the field, and to provide more targets perhaps.
          Requires medical care from limited medical staff like surgeons to remove the clothing,etc pushed into the wound.
          Soldier will not be returning to the field anytime soon.

          Best shot for depletion of enemy resources.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Xemu (50595)

        Yeah, I also found it tasteless. Center-of-mass hits are much more reliable than head shots.

        No, you have to remember that the only way to kill a zombie is by shooting it in the head [youtube.com]

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I also found it disturbing. The death of a human should not be treated so ... disgustingly. Somebody needs to do something about Samzenpus and the garbage he puts out.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:53PM (#26535901)

        Somebody needs to do something about Samzenpus and the garbage he puts out.

        Definitely. Someone should shoot him with an iPod-enabled sniper rifle.

      • Re:Out of line (Score:5, Insightful)

        by halivar (535827) <bfelger.gmail@com> on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:58PM (#26536013) Homepage

        I'm firmly convinced that 90% of all offenses taken spring from a deep-seated human desire for martyrdom and it's accompanying ego-expansion. Somehow, in the state of having been offended, we believe we can attain the deeply satisfying, self-aggrandizing self-righteousness of an unjustly oppressed person.

        IOW, you're just looking for stuff to piss you off because you like it. Suck it up, princess.

        • by tsm_sf (545316) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @08:45PM (#26540283) Journal
          I'm firmly convinced that 90% of all offenses taken spring from a deep-seated human desire for martyrdom and it's accompanying ego-expansion.

          Well, that's because you're an asshole.
      • Re:Out of line (Score:4, Insightful)

        by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Wednesday January 21, 2009 @06:57AM (#26544365) Homepage Journal

        The death of a human should not be treated so ... disgustingly.

        Aside from your total misapplication of the word "disgustingly" I'm not really clear on what absolute metric you are using to determine what should or should not happen.

        I'm glad that your moral compass is here to guide us all.

        Somebody needs to do something about Samzenpus and the garbage he puts out.

        Won't somebody think of the children?

        Your comment sickens me. Literally, as in, made me nauseous.

        "Somebody needs to do something" about your smug sense of moral superiority.

    • yeah (Score:5, Funny)

      by Trepidity (597) <(gro.hsikcah) (ta) (todhsals-muiriled)> on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:51PM (#26535859)

      My eastern-european friends didn't like being sent cryptically named .wav files containing the Starcraft audio "WE REQUIRE MORE VESPENE GAS", either.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by arcmay (253138)

      Absolutely agree. The pun in the headline is a bad enough, but that "joke" is the most juvenile and disgusting editorial addition to a submission I've seen on Slashdot.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Even though I'm just a lowly AC, I'll concur as well. I don't want to say killing is never necessary (although I don't want to say it sometimes is, either), but NO MATTER whether it is, it's always a serious thing, and the death of any person is a sad occurrence and should never be taken lightly.

      • I don't care what your ID number is, you MUST be new here.
    • Re: (Score:2, Redundant)

      by retech (1228598)
      I read it and felt the same. While I do find dark and oft times off colour humour funny, this type of thing just makes me sad. We live in a world that not only makes killing easy, it makes killing others a fun and a game.
    • by revery (456516) <charles@NosPam.cac2.net> on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:21PM (#26536519) Homepage

      If it automatically played a theme song after every head shot, this would be the coolest rifle accessory ever.

      Am I the only one who found this attempt at humor disturbing and objectionable?

      Not only objectionable, but completely impractical. What kind of sniper would want to draw attention to his location by playing a theme song?

      • by Duradin (1261418)

        The simple solution would be to put it on the m107 instead of the m110.

        Subtlety is not one of its strong suits.

    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by BitHive (578094)

      I didn't find it disturbing and objectionable so much as humiliating for whoever thought it was funny.

      There's no point in being offended by stupidity. Rather, we should pity the type of adult man-child that makes such jokes, even ironically, for they know not how much they embarrass themselves.

    • Re:Out of line (Score:5, Insightful)

      by thethibs (882667) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:40PM (#26536901) Homepage

      Wow! An orgy of self-rightious political correctness. Can I play too?

    • Re:Out of line (Score:5, Insightful)

      by LanMan04 (790429) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:42PM (#26536931)

      (And yes, I know my comment will get me modded down, but I strongly doubt I'm alone in thinking a real life killing is quite different from killing in an FPS.)

      90% of people on this board have experience with making virtual headshots. Real headshots, >1%. It's just what we know.

    • by couchslug (175151) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:43PM (#26536945)

      It's hilarious.

      (Sensitive people need a second, different internet.)

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Cajun Hell (725246)
      Zombie sympathizer.
  • by the4thdimension (1151939) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:39PM (#26535587) Homepage
    The military was the last bastion of "pen and paper" score tracking. Thanks to Apple's great products and a little ingenuity, the DoD finally has a tool to automatically keep track of scores. All we need now is a database for it to upload to automatically via wireless, and we can have a global real-time kill count and score!
  • Yay DRM (Score:5, Funny)

    by emag (4640) <slashdot@g[ ]ki.org ['urs' in gap]> on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:45PM (#26535741) Homepage

    Now in the middle of a "situation", snipers will get a "you have already authorized this iPod on 5 sniper rifles" error...

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Lendrick (314723)

      In response to this innovation by Apple, Microsoft will release the Zune Sniper Edition Basic and Zune Sniper Edition Ultimate. Both of these will come equipped with their exclusive ShootsForSure technology, which will prevent you from borrowing ammunition from other snipers.

  • Your iPhone was rebooting!

    I can see it now, "Special Flops"... *lol*

  • by mr_mischief (456295) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:49PM (#26535813) Journal

    This should help not just snipers but hunters and perhaps some day main force ground troops. At the listed link, the article's author states that the application software is available at the iTunes store. Contrary to some stories on the 'net, it is a general rifle ballistics application that allows someone to enter a different rifle and ammunition profile. So it's good for less specialized rifles, and not just the M110.

    The article didn't mention the availability of the mounting hardware. It attaches an iPod Touch mounted in an Otterbox protective case to a side-mounted picatinny rail. That seems much more handy in combat situations than digging an iPod out of one's pocket. This is what makes it not just another ballistics app for the iPod Touch and iPhone. Mounting it on the rifle could be a big deal in certain situations, and lots of rifles can be fitted with picatinny rails on the side.

    • Well, if it really is any good, you might be able to read about a review about it in the near future here: http://www.snipercentral.com/ [snipercentral.com]

    • I totally saw the same use! I shoot service rifle matches in the Civilian Marksmanship Program, and this would be a dream to have for practice. I reload for competition, so the ability to create your own datasets is great. Uses for hunting are also fairly obvious, especially when used with a incline compensating range finder.
  • by LordByronStyrofoam (587954) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:51PM (#26535843)
    .. I thought it would be an article about sniping eBay bids at the last second from my iPod.
  • by jason.sweet (1272826) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:51PM (#26535845)
    So much for "Don't ask, don't tell."
  • by jcr (53032) <jcr.mac@com> on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:53PM (#26535903) Journal

    Seems like it would be a problem w/r/t revealing the sniper's position.

    -jcr

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by faloi (738831)
      I doubt it'd be used much in the field, at least not without some heavy modification to the iPod. I can't imagine it's resilient enough to meat mil-spec standards off-the-shelf. Once it's out there, I'd bet the spotter uses it more to get rapid numbers to feed to the shooter than the shooter uses it. The spotter can keep it mostly concealed and hide the light.
    • Not to mention that it would probably need to be quite rugged to withstand recoil.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by MBGMorden (803437)

        Depends on the round they're using, and the rifle's setup/weight. A heavy rifle chambered in something smaller (like the 6.8 Remington SPC for example, which has been gaining some favor with the military brass, though it likely doesn't have quite the range for sniper duty) with a muzzle brake can be pretty light recoiling. Certainly light enough that it wouldn't damage anything that used solid state storage.

        Problem is that the muzzle brake tends to make a rifle insanely loud. What the sniper gains in red

  • will have an online list of who is being targetted in real time.
  • Illumination? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Culture20 (968837) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:56PM (#26535959)
    Because what every sniper needs is to have his face lit up when he's trying to remain hidden.
  • by rlp (11898)

    You can install Rockbox on the Ipod but then you need the gun mounting for the BFG-9000.

  • by dreemernj (859414) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @03:57PM (#26536007) Homepage Journal
    But they are charging an arm and a leg for the wifi seeking missiles they are selling to our enemies.
  • This just in: the Dept of Defense has categorized the iPod Touch as munitions and therefore cannot be exported without a DoD license.
  • What? (Score:2, Flamebait)

    by no-body (127863)

    Are you playing too many video games mixing up reality with fiction?

    What kind of reality do you have stored in your brain - playing music as result of destroying another human - howsoever you are trying to justify it?

    Yes - this is a flame!

    I can't believe this kind of crap is going on on /. - maybe it's time to move on or start filtering...
    Yucc!

  • This is just the beginning. Next thing we know, we'll be seeing WMDs with Apple logos on them. I see it now: the iBomb (tm)
    • by jgtg32a (1173373)
      But that's against the Apple EULA

      http://blog.wired.com/monkeybites/2007/03/itunes_eula_pro.html
  • by dazedNconfuzed (154242) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:05PM (#26536193)

    Computing ballistics in the field has been an ongoing issue for long-range shooters, as determining the required elevation & windage settings for precision shots depends heavily on a variety of factors (wind speed, temperature, humidity, barometric pressure, bullet weight, ballistic coefficient, barrel length, powder burn rate, barrel twist, target angle, distance, and even latitude & direction). Until recently, sharpshooters/snipers addressed the problem by computing ballistics tables ahead of time, memorizing or taking paper copies into the field, developing a reliable "gut feel", and even using specialized slide rules (ex.: Mil-Dot Master); only recently have portable computers been adapted or built (Palm Pilot, Barrett BORS) to improve situational accuracy. Bringing the iPod Touch into the picture via a convenient mounting system allows tremendous improvement & flexibility in creating applications to solve ballistics problems, as there are already at least 3 apps available, and both professionals & hobbists can easily develop their own apps. That this mounting system is provided by Knights Armament, a well-respected name in high-quality small arms, helps as well.

    Those with snide remarks should be aware that (A) this is legitimately needed by military and police to keep your life safe and comfortable, and (B) long-range target shooting is a legitimate and popular sport.

    • by Stevecrox (962208)
      I can understand the need for such technology and even how it will help. What I don't understand is the choice of device, if cost is really a factor then a COTS HTC Touch or something similar would be far cheaper, if you were dealing with large enough volumes you could problem mount/design a standard Windows Mobile ARM 9 kit inside your own shell (cutting down weight and giving you exactly what you need).

      This is a interesting modification of a consumer device but part of me feels that there would be bette
      • by thethibs (882667)

        They probably did the wise thing: Find the best software and then buy the hardware that runs it.

        There's really good ballistics software for the Palm, so I'd guess the IPod app is superlative.

    • Those with snide remarks should be aware that (A) this is legitimately needed by military and police to keep your life safe and comfortable

      Based on what assumptions? That a military with efficient snipers is required to keep me safe and comfortable? That a police force with efficient snipers is required for the same?

      Do you really mean to suggest that we live in such a dangerous world that the *only* way to ensure general public safety is by using anonymous-kill-at-a-distance tools, that without improving

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Gavagai80 (1275204)

      (B) long-range target shooting is a legitimate and popular sport.

      Is there a point the sport anymore if you let the computer do the work?

  • "Reach out and hit someone!"

    (This works with iPhone too right?)

  • I find it hard to improve this as a creative idea. NEDM.

  • we killed the website. More deadly than a rattle-snake ... slashdot

  • Calibration (Score:5, Funny)

    by SoundGuyNoise (864550) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:16PM (#26536403) Homepage
    Do you calibrate its accuracy like a touchscreen and a stylus? Except with live human heads?
  • Now if only it would say, "Thanks for standing still, wanker."

  • Some potential uses (Score:4, Informative)

    by Lt.Hawkins (17467) on Tuesday January 20, 2009 @04:38PM (#26536861) Homepage

    So obviously there are some pretty funny comments on this, and some incredulous "why?" or "won't this give away a snipers position?" posts as well.

    To address the latter:
    As most of the /. community can appreciate, projectile ballistics isn't as simple as a game; The hardest I've seen in a game is "move the crosshair around to simulate breathing" Obviously, its more difficult than this, or *everyone* at war would be sitting back at 1200 meters, sniping from safety.

    When you get into precision shooting, you need to take into account so many factors, it boggles the mind. Muzzle velocity, wind (and wind isn't constant at the point of your muzzle and where the target is, humidity, bullet mass and aerodynamics, barrel twist rate, etc. This ballistics computer helps you input that data, and will spit out how you need to adjust your crosshair to account for all this stuff.

    A system like this would also make it easy to log past shot data, which is very important for precision shooters.

    I've seen wrist-watch ballistics computers as well; beats the crap out of charts.

    As for when it would be used:
    In training.
    In competitions.
    By police snipers in some situations (where, perhaps, concealment isn't important, but getting that first cold-barrel shot exactly on target is.)
    By a sniper's spotter, perhaps.

    disclaimer: despite my username, I'm not military, nor am I a precision shooter; i've merely had experience shooting as a major hobby.

  • If you get a no scope?
  • This really ads new meaning to the term "kill switch."

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