It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s—AAAACK!

It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s—AAAACK!



I’m dreaming of a drone Christmas. Tiny drones tucked into stockings. Bigger drones beneath the tree. A drone for Dad, another for Junior, a third for your cool tween niece.

Anecdotal reports suggest that drones are topping Christmas lists all over. Why are holiday shoppers so excited? 1) These newer-model aircraft are meant to be far easier to fly than their predecessors. 2) They have cameras, allowing for all manner of creative (or mischievous) projects. 3) Folks just seem to be jazzed ever since we started calling these things “drones.”

Rechristening a “remote control toy helicopter” a “drone” suggests that, soon after unwrapping his present on Christmas morning, your teenage son will be executing lethal missile strikes in Yemen. And indeed there’s been a vaguely menacing edge to a lot of recent drone hype. Consumer drones have lately starred in many a techno-dystopian horrorscape: French authorities freaked out when drones mysteriously appeared above nuclear power plants. A New Jersey property ownerriddled a drone with bullets when it encroached on what he considered his personal airspace. Kanye West is afraid that drones might electrocute his daughter.