Category Archives: Emerging Tech

Happy Creepy Mother’s Day


Note: This post first appeared before Mother’s Day 2016. It was uber-creepy then and it’s still uber-creepy so enjoy the re-run and call your mama!

A 3D printing company is offering a one time gift for Mother’s Day — her very own replicant of you.

The “deal” is being offered on Groupon which explains.

If you’re reading this so far and are the opposite of creeped out .. Wait … There’s more..

The manufacturer  says:

Unlike busy adult children, life-sized 3D-printed models do not have hectic schedules. That means they’re there when Mom needs them most: all the time. And while your mom can’t claim this life-size replica of you as a dependent on her taxes, she will be able to take it to the movies, drive in the carpool lane, and tell it all about how Darlene is really more of a friend than a hairdresser.

If Bates Motel is not at the top of the queue for whomever wrote THAT–I’ll be damed surprised.


Best of all, this reverse Dorian Gray never ages and never stops smiling, even when it’s watching your mother’s favorite tearjerker or spending the night stashed in the broom closet.

Look… Emerging tech has no greater advocate than SparkyRaygun but… No… Just ….no.


#DroneMonday: #DJI Software, Hydrogen Fuel and Mining Make Headlines

#Drones launched quite a buzz this past week.

For example, #DJI, the world’s largest drone manufacturer, unveiled a major upgrade in its software development toolkit last week during the Chinese company’s AirWorks conference in San Francisco. Company officials said its new software enhancements will allow developers to build on each other’s work via DJI’s Mobile and Onboard Software Development Kit (SDK).


Continue reading

Students concoct Martin Shkreli’s price-hiked pill for a mere $2

imrs.jpgOne of my favorite hashtags is #BetterWorld. Eleven letters and a hash mark concisely capture a shared goal to make the world a healthier, more sustainable place (depending on what one means by “better,” of course).

With that in mind: Here’s an example of how open source cooperation is fighting the insipid greed and demagoguery that threaten to hold back human progress.

The Washington Post details the movie-villain backstory of Martin Shkreli, the biotech executive has become “widely reviled for hiking the price of a lifesaving drug by more than 4,000 percent overnight, to $750 per pill.”

What can defeat such a diabolical scheme?

A few good high-school students:


“A group of 11th grade students claim to have proven a point: the drug can be made for much, much cheaper. The group of 11 high school students, ages 16 and 17, successfully recreated the drug, Daraprim, for a mere $2 a pill, according to scientists from the University of Sydney.”

Shkreli responded via Twitter, admitting he had seen the error of his wrongheaded ways and would immediately drop the price.

Just kidding.


Apparently, not just anyone can make a coherent sentence.

Tagged , ,

#DroneMonday: Media Rights, Trump’s DOT, #NoDAPL


It’s a given that drones (aka unmanned aerial vehicles or systems) will continue to skyrocket as a major emerging tech sector. The commercial drone sector is expected to soar into an $89-billion-dollar industry over the next decade, producing millions of new jobs.

As with any disruptive technology, weekly media reports are chocked full of drone-related controversies, breakthroughs and startup news.

Continue reading

Tagged , ,

Jason Drones On and On …about Drones

darpaaerialdragnetIn addition to my sporadic posts here at Sparky RayGun, I’m a regular contributor to DroneLife, a premier source for drone industry news, product information, trends, and analysis.

As an optimistic futurist, I’m bullish about the potential for drones to transform humanity in a positive way despite the many roadblocks along the way — privacy issues, unmanned weaponization and rouge aircraft crashes.

Every past instance of tech emergence has always harbored a potential dark underbelly. Lest we forget the naysayers of the 90’s who predicted the Internet would be a frightening tech-pocalypse rather than the essential backbone of civilization it has become — warts and all.

Once we as a society address the problems inherent with drone disruption- be it job loss, terror threats, etc. — I’m confident we’ll integrate drones into our society to the betterment of humankind. In fact, for every negative story you may find about drones, I can produce three examples of Drones for Good.

Continue reading

Tagged , ,

Drone Uses Sound Waves to Battle Blazes

firesoundA Canadian inventor is fanning the flames of innovation with a drone concept that could revolutionize firefighting technology.

Continue reading


Police Drones Foil Prison Drug Smugglers

CaymanAirvuCayman Island law-enforcement officials have a new use for police drones — sniffing out drug drops at area prisons.

Continue reading


Virginia College Launches Drone Program

PVCCA Virginia-based community college is hopping on the drone-training bandwagon to help public-safety agencies embrace technology.

Continue reading


Anti-Drone Tech Attracts $3M Funding Round

skysafeGovernment agencies are shopping around for new anti-drone solutions and the emerging industry is making the venture-capital world take notice.

Continue reading

Tagged ,

Fighting Fire with Firefighting Drones

Researchers at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln are developing a new drone that may help stop the spread of wildfires by starting smaller fires.

The Unmanned Aerial System for Fire Fighting is the brain-child of several university disciplines including drone technology, fire ecology, conservation and public policy. Continue reading

Tagged ,