Thank God For Beer Drones (Dronetender, Give Me A Drank)

For all the potential harm brought on by technological advances, there is always a bright side — and drones are no different. Though this incredible infographic provides a glimpse of the pitfalls of drone use (an estimated 3,115 Pakistanis killed since 2004, only 2 percent believed to be high-value targets, etc.,) all is right in the world: a summer concert in South Africa plans to deliver beer to attendees via unmanned aerial vehicles.

Yup, you read that right. Beer drones.

The OppiKoppi Music Festival, held in the Limpopo Province of South Africa every August, is testing a “pilot” program this year that will allow concertgoers to order canned brews on their cellphones.

The mechanics of delivery are fairly simple. Upon receipt of an order, a manually piloted, beer-equipped drone will be dispatched to the phone coordinates and hover over the customer. A claw releases the beer and voila!: a can of ice-cold beer served on a parachute platter. The parachute floats the beers down, and the customer retrieves it from the ground.

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Red, White & Drone: The Unmanned Machines Invade The States

Since Americans have decided that foreign drones are mostly good, and have yet to really freak out about the use of drones at home, domestic agencies are rapidly looking to increase operations for nonmilitary unmanned vehicles in the US.

It’s a New Age example of the classic idiom, “If you can’t beat them, join them” (read: put them to use in the homeland).

As evidence emerges that maybe we don’t know everything about what the government is doing with drones in other countries, law enforcement agencies, NASA, and even PETA are expanding their use of drones at home.

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Wait A Minute, Mr. Drone Man: Medal For New Warfare Under Review

Last month, former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta raised the Internet’s (hypothetical) eyebrows when he announced plans to commemorate “extraordinary achievements” in drone and cyber warfare through the creation of the Distinguished Warfare Medal, effectively removing the “geographic limitation” that previously defined medal recipients.

While we’d all cherish the possibility of translating time spent playing Bioshock Infinite to time spent morphing into a decorated war hero, pundet reactions were mixed at best.

CNN took issue with the notion that recipients would be able to earn a coveted military medal without actually engaging in physical warfare. According to author Rubin Navarette Jr., a soldier could “press a few buttons and eliminate a few people” while ”sipping coffee and checking … e-mail thousands of miles away in a control room in Virginia.” This, of course, is an assessment that simplifies how to operate a drone and exaggerates man’s ability to multi-task. But it is a solid point nonetheless.

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Local Learns Politics: When It Leaks, It Pours

Poli-tricks, poli-ticks, politics. The intricacies of government and society are supposed to make your head hurt—simply because none of them actually make a shred of sense. Game theory never helped anyone either. But that’s what defines politics: a bunch of nonsense packaged into a somewhat sustainable rule of law. We know the topic can be yawn-inducing, confusing and nauseating but, hey, it’s in the news so we might as well take a shot at disassembling and digesting this mess for the greater good. And that’s what “Local Learns Politics” is all about.

By this point, you should know about drone warfare. Even if you don’t enjoy politics, you should still know that the U.S. government has this fondness for human-activated flying war robots that spray missiles at warranted targets from afar. Call it the “future of war,” a “new age of combat” or “Ishmael.” Yeah, it’s kinda fucked up. And, yeah, our government likes to use them a lot.

So the leaked memo from the Justice Department that NBC News found this week wasn’t too surprising. It was basically the legal equivalent of the leaked torture memos left over from the Bush administration; both had the same underlying suggestions: “Here’s what we’re doing. And here’s just how we’re actually getting away with it.” Read more…


Damn Future, You Cray: A Hovering Drone That Follows You and Records Your Day

Is the unexamined life worth living? Startup company, Always Innovating would say “nay.” For all you social media junkies out there who like for every sandwich you eat, show you go to, and bar you frequent to be Tweeted, Youtubed, Instagramed, Facebooked, checked-in, and Tumbl’d the technological dieties have smiled upon you.

Always Innovating has worked towards their namesake and has come up with a plam-sized mini-drone to hover over your shoulder. The days of pulling out your phone out during inopportune situations to snap a photo are dwindling.

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