Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Remote Controlled Surveillance Beetles?

The technology is now available:
The beetle's payload consists of an off-the-shelf microprocessor, a radio receiver, and a battery attached to a custom-printed circuit board, along with six electrodes implanted into the animals' optic lobes and flight muscles. Flight commands are wirelessly sent to the beetle via a radio-frequency transmitter that's controlled by a nearby laptop. Oscillating electrical pulses delivered to the beetle's optic lobes trigger takeoff, while a single short pulse ceases flight.
You can control the direction and speed of the speed from a remote location, and the beetle is hefty enough to carry an additional load like a miniature tape recorder. A couple of thoughts:

1) It's time for a modern update/remix of themes explored in The Conversation. Thirty-five years later, it is already basically obsolete.

2) As technology improves, the transparent society will begin to look like a better and better option.