I have thoughts. quelle surprise.
It's like a combination of every fake science idea ever.
My low bar is the ADE-651 from Advanced Tactical Security & Communications Ltd. of Great Britain. It cost $60k. The government of Iraq (ie, the government we installed) bought about a thousand of them to detect bombs and explosives. It is also literally a dowsing rod.
The truly tragic thing about the ADE-651 is it wasn't even a novel scam. Law enforcement had gotten burned by the same dumb idea ten years previously. But since nobody got in trouble for that, why not keep the scam alive?
Solar-powered recharging. Okay, what happens when dust inevitably blows all over your grounded solar panel?
you shut your whore mouth. Oh wait on the gadget jewfro is pushing here? I mean you're gonna have to drive by every other day or so anyway 'cuz any coyotes who see that thing are gonna overturn it and set it on fire anyway so it's kind of moot.
What is the depreciation schedule on these drones?
Guessing eighteen months based on my experience with capital depreciation schedules. Will any of them make it 18 months? Negative ghost rider. Doesn't matter though - the point is you've got a budget, I've got something to sell, and our daddies are in the same masonic lodge.
The issue I have is that while the business strategy of "move fast and break things" seems to work, the last place you ever want to employ that strategy is designing products apparently supposed to be used in life-or-death scenarios.
The phrase used by VCs is "regulatory arbitrage" which basically means "yeah it's illegal but we'll be profitable until they figure out how to enforce it." Theoretically? Neither Uber nor AirBnB should ever be profitable. Practically? What are you gonna do, sue?
You attract the VC money, you hire actual engineers, and then, "Law enforcement is praising the BRINCball! We got Hans Gruber to release the hostages after talking to him through a drone for an hour!"
Soldiers, wandering outside the green zone, dowsing for IEDs. Why yes - yes it did kill a lot of them.
These ideas become dystopian because they're stupid. While cops are trained to exercise judgment, not all of them are necessarily trained in the workings of this technology, which leads to an undue trust being placed in it, which leads to misuse.
Quick quiz question: which happened first, ED209 in fiction or the Philly PD bombing activists? Surprise! Philly!
I don't want to stereotype cops, but sometimes, a man can be stupid?
Stereotype away, man.
The issue isn't "all cops are bad" the issue is "cops have created a bad ecosystem." It attracts and retains bad cops.
I had a CBP officer give me his personal phone number saying "call me if you're interested in a career in law enforcement" and I was a second-year university student at the time.
I only know what you're saying but it's entirely possible he saw you as not one of the terrible ones. Everyone I know who went into law enforcement was exactly the sort of person who shouldn't get into law enforcement. And the ones I know best did the right goddamn thing.
I'm making my way through this cheerful tome at the moment. It's easy to say the phrase "end-stage capitalism" but the problem is? We've suffered so much worse before.
I'm kind of at the point where I'm cheering on ideas like this. Fuck yeah spend your money on ridiculously stupid, ineffectual ideas. Build the goddamn wall. Spinlaunch spinlaunch rah rah rah. I wanna buy merch, man. I'm still bummin' I never dropped the coin on the Baz Lansdorp autographed Mars One poster.
'cuz the thing is? If you're wasting capital on failures, we don't have to suffer your successes.
"Hey Bob - CBP just got a bump. Think you could less-lethal that thing?"
"Sure thing, Chuck. It'll be ahhh, less. Less lethal."
"Cool. Cut a video and they'll cut a check."