Wow - the hairs on the back of my neck stood up when I read this article. In short: on September 26, 1983, the world avoided nuclear devastation because one Soviet officer kept a level head.
When I was younger I used to believe that technology should increasingly replace emotional and irrational human beings in decision chains, especially those as critical as the decision to launch nuclear weapons. Now that I have a much better understanding of how technology comes to be, I believe the exact opposite. The only thing that saved us on September 26, 1983 was the judgement of one human being - an automated system would probably have launched the missiles.
Russian Colonel Who Averted Nuclear War Receives World Citizen Award - NEWS - MOSNEWS.COM