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Hands-free Integration Digital Operations System (HI-DOS)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8750-22-C-1019
Agency Tracking Number: F221-0012-0065
Amount: $149,438.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: AF221-0012
Solicitation Number: 22.1
Solicitation Year: 2022
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-08-10
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-05-09
Small Business Information
2319 Blanton Drive
San Antonio, TX 78209-2249
United States
DUNS: 118318587
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Steven Turner
 (410) 371-1064
Business Contact
 John Goodson
Phone: (619) 602-0303
Research Institution

Darkhive's Hands-free Integration Digital Operations System (HI-DOS) is an open, Government-off-the-shelf (GOTS) voice command and control (VC2) and authentication framework adapted to the uniquely challenging environments our military personnel and broader TAK community face every day. Leveraging our former Special Operations personnel and experienced TAK developers that have shipped two platforms within the TAK Product Center, Darkhive’s HI-DOS solution is composed of a Government-owned suite of voice processing API’s focused on authenticated wake-word detection with troops-in-combat detection, low equal error rate (EER) authentication, VC2 covering all available audio inputs(including commonly fielded tactical radios), intuitive audio alerts, and a novel proximity-based authentication augmentation. The GOTS design enables Darkhive and other researchers to rapidly integrate and test State-of-the-Art Machine Audio algorithms through community-defined interfaces within ATAK and Android, avoiding vendor lock-in and increasing the pace of innovation. Users can switch between HI-DOS reference algorithms or commercial offerings, collecting qualitative and quantitative feedback incorporated into a GOTS benchmarking framework. Leveraging HI-DOS, users can self-enroll voice/body wave biometrics using the latest Time-delayed Deep Neural Network approaches, achieving an EER of less than 1%. Rolling authentication and duress codewords are defined to satisfy two-factor authentication requirements. A library of default VC2 actions may be extended through recorded steps associated with voice commands to aid hands-free operation. The VC2 reference implementation avoids classic speech-to-text translation in favor of a unique machine learning model integrating speech recognition and natural language understanding. The HI-DOS interfaces capture tactical radio audio streams, easing the cognitive burden of users frequently overwhelmed monitoring multiple channels for situational awareness. For example, entering MGRS coordinates into TAK requires pen and paper to record grids before entering them and is often cumbersome, error-prone, and slow. HI-DOS will “copy” critical information into a voice-reviewable queue for processing by VC2 algorithms. Darkhive’s primary objective with the HI-DOS solution is to bring intuitive hands-free operation in extremely noisy environments (>120 dB) to ATAK to ensure users stay engaged with their mission. HI-DOS will be contributed to the TAK community with unlimited rights and, ideally, if approved for releasability outside of the TAK-MIL community, provided to benefit thousands of public safety personnel.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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