Pew! Pew! Pew! If you were a child between the mid-80s and 90s you should readily recognize that as the sound a cartoon laser makes. We grew up on excessively muscle bound guys exchanging laser fire with sinister and seemingly constantly constipated bad guys from the future. Check out the video below if that reference seemed a little too esoteric.
Aside from fibre deficient bad guys, ladies and gentlemen the future is here! Both the U.S. navy and China unveiled laser defense systems these past few months. Although not as impressive as their cartoon counterparts, they still create huge Michael Bay like explosions. The advent of this technology also opens up the door to the coolest job title ever: Laser Technician. That isn’t the only new career path this technology is trail-blazing though.
Image source: stanford
Pasty gamers are the future of warfare?
The latest addition to modern warfare has been the unmanned aerial vehicle or the unmanned drones. A soldier sits in a room on the other side of the world receiving a real time video feed and controls the drone using, you guessed it, a modified game controller. The drones have also been weaponized recently meaning they can also shoot bombs. The new defensive laser system that the U.S. navy is currently using is also controlled with a modified Xbox controller. We better start loving the nerd next door because his next career move from ‘semi-professional gamer/ virtual guild leader’ might be ‘controller of massively murderous aerial drone/ skin melting laser’.
Warfare is expensive, lasers surprisingly, aren’t
Warfare is a massively expensive endeavor for any county or entity. Surprisingly, this new laser system cost just around $1 a shot, that’s less than the average candy bar. This is a dual edged sword though: cheaper can save you money or it can entice you to use said cheap thing more frivolously. Combine that with the saying that goes ‘the devil makes work for idle hands’ and soldiers have a lot of time on their hands. Down time and a pin-point accurate laser that’s super cheap to use could result in sit-com style slap-stick.
Pocket sized drones
Yet another throw back to our pre-adolescent entertainment is the military’s latest toy: the 80 gram pocket drone. It weighs about as much as a medium sized banana. Not unlike a robotic bug that eavesdrops on conversations (like we’ve seen in innumerable movies), this pocketable drone will be used to explore buildings that are too dangerous to go into. The saying the walls have ears just became a little more literal.
Did your childhood visions of the future involve lasers and gamers controlling high powered lasers? Let us know in the comment section below.