Video: An Illustrated History of Drones

We recently stumbled across this motion graphic on the history of drones by Mashable, and had to share it. This video helps bring anyone up to speed on the emergence of drones and some of the questions they have raised on foreign policy.

The era of drones has started, but the real question is on the coming implications and ethic dilemmas of this sea change.

Drones are now ubiquitous. They can be found in many places: killing hundreds of people overseas, spying on your neighbour, taking pictures or video of events, delivering medicine to remote locations, spraying and watering crops, and helping monitor animal conservation efforts. Soon, they will also be delivering packages to your doorstep.

As with any big shift in technology, the drone era has been met with no shortage of skepticism. Human Rights Watch issued an unequivocal report on the ban of autonomous drones with weapons systems that are not piloted or controlled by any human. This happened as the culmination of an eight-year, $1.4 billion military project, a new autonomous weapons drone prototype, executed a flawless landing on the USS Bush aircraft carrier.

Piloted remotely from the US, unmanned aerial vehicles are already flying missions abroad and executing kill orders. Here is the current inventory of drones currently held by the US military:

Drones in the United States held by the military

While there are questions raised in both domestic and foreign policy arenas, one thing is for certain: drone technology is not going anywhere and the debate is just beginning. What do you think the future holds for drone use?

Original Graphic by: Mashable


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