A few months ago, I wrote a post about a drone that can fire a paintball gun with great accuracy. I concluded, "If this is what's doable by hobbyists today, think about what will be possible five, ten, or 20 years from now."
Well, that didn't take long.
A homemade quadcopter has been modified to fire a semiautomatic handgun.
In a video the drone, which measures 27 inches end to end, is shown hovering in woodlands while firing the gun.
No more details are given about the drone, or who made it, although this appears to be the first genuine video of a gun mounted on a consumer drone being successfully fired. In the short video -- which WIRED cannot independently confirm is real -- the gun is fired four times, with each shot repelling the drone backwards slightly.
The Verge noticed that the Hogwit YouTube user account is linked to Austin Haughwout, who was involved in a drone-related incident in June 2014. A woman accused Haughwout, who was flying a drone above a beach in Connecticut, of taking photos of people sunbathing; she attacked him, and he recorded the entire incident on video and posted it toYouTube under the Hogwit username. The woman was charged with third-degree assault and later sentenced to probation.
This time, however, it could be Hogwit who's breaking the law. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, fitting a drone with any sort of weapon is illegal. A former drone regulator at the FAA, Jim Williams, said in 2013 that there are rules in place "that would prohibit weapons from being installed on a civil aircraft."
It's not the first time we've seen a non-military drone equipped with a gun, but previous videos turned out to be hoaxes. In 2012, a video that purported to show a gun-equipped quadcopter drone turned out to be a viral marketing video for a Call of Duty game.
Enjoy. The Future of Violence edges ever closer.