TIA Fades to Black
Though Congress killed DARPA’s TIA project and eliminated the office in which it was housed, this AP story details how much of the research formerly funded by the agency has been transferred to classified programs at unspecified intelligence agencies.
This is emblematic of a worrisome trend at DARPA of taking formerly unclassified, fundamental research projects and turning them “black” or classified. While there are likely quite a few areas of research which rightly should be classified for national security reasons, there should also be some concern that programs aren’t being turned “black” — and therefore out of public scrutiny — simply because they might be controversial. There is a cost to the progress of science when research goes black — results aren’t disseminated, certain researchers and institutions are barred from working in the area (for reasons of US or institutional policy), and public oversight doesn’t occur….