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Gun-Firing Drone Raises Some Eyebrows 216

An anonymous reader writes: A video posted on YouTube showing a drone firing a gun in a wooded area has caused some controversy today. The short video shows a four-rotored custom drone with a special rig containing a handgun. The handgun proceeds to fire four shots, handling the recoil better than might be expected. The user who posted the video also submitted it to Reddit, where a commenter noted that the apparent use of a solenoid trigger would class the device as an automatic weapon under ATF rules.
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Gun-Firing Drone Raises Some Eyebrows

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  • People like this guy are why we cannot have nice things.

    However, this thing could have some potential in the development of an extreme form of skeet shooting....

    • by garyisabusyguy ( 732330 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:28PM (#50125487)

      In drone-filled American, skeet shoot YOU!

    • by Applehu Akbar ( 2968043 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:33PM (#50125499)

      See! I told you someone would think of a military use for drones.

    • You'd same the same thing if someone else did it. How do you expect to have "nice thing" when you can't do them because you're afraid they might make it illegal.

      The only reason you can't have nice thing is the gov doesn’t give as flying fuck about you and you're too scared to take back your country.

      • The only reason you can't have nice thing is the gov doesn’t give as flying fuck about you and you're too scared to take back your country.

        And drones with fricking lasers are the first step to taking back our country.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by gweihir ( 88907 )

      While this demonstration is not surprising in any way at all, stupid and evil politicians will of course jump right on it. The fact of the matter is that neither can drones be suppressed, nor can firearms. In the worst case, you do a front-loader with self-cast lead bullets and powder from firecrackers.

      Of course, authoritarians (and basically all politicians with any real power fall into that class these days) are afraid all the time and irrational all the time as a consequence, so no rational arguments wil

    • by Dan541 ( 1032000 )

      The Russians have done it better. []

    • by stooo ( 2202012 )

      >>People like this guy are why we cannot have nice things.

      People like this guy are why we cannot have nice weapons to play with.
      Yeah, well. We don't need weapons to play with.

    • From the "Second Amendment" point of view- if the government has drones that can fire missiles, why shouldn't we have drones that can fire handguns?

      Still, I dislike the engineering method of this. I think there's a far better way to do it, there is no need for a grip or trigger on a mounted gun, that's just extra weight.

      • For the same reason (which I can't figure out) that I can't just buy a military-grade rifle, like a US rifleman would carry, even though I'd pass any reasonable background check.

    • People like this guy are why we cannot have nice things.

      However, this thing could have some potential in the development of an extreme form of skeet shooting....

      Tired of normal skeet shooting? Craving some excitement? Well come over to Jim Bob's EXTREME skeet range, on our range the clay pigeons SHOOT BACK!!!

    • >However, this thing could have some potential in the development of an extreme form of skeet shooting.

      Combined with delivery, it could also be useful for curbing package theft.

  • Priorities (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 16, 2015 @12:27PM (#50125187)

    This has two components, the handgun and the drone. I suspect the push will be for greater legislation of drones rather than handguns.

    • Re:Priorities (Score:4, Insightful)

      by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @08:44PM (#50125307) Journal
      Seems reasonable. I don't doubt that if the National Rotorcraft Association were a political force to be reckoned with they'd go after the handgun instead.
    • by deKernel ( 65640 )

      No, we don't need any more legislation period. If you wish to live in a nanny state, by all means move to one because there are many to choose from.

    • What is the concern with "drone" about this? Am I nuts for thinking this had to be done in the past with a traditional helicopter or RC airplane? Is it just the "drone" is more of a consumer good/easy to fly compared to traditional old-school R/C stuff?
  • Imagine this on a Lily Cam or AirDog where it would aim for you - and at you. I, for one, welcome our new Drone Assassin overlords.
  • by Anonymous Coward
  • Bill collectors?

    • I was thinking more Robot Wars, only the robots fly.

      • I've only watched the first couple of Battlebots this season but already there was one bot with a freaking flame thrower. I expect there are some sort of rules as to what you can attach to your bot in that competition, but was pleasantly surprised to see flame throwers aren't excluded. Explosives, I imagine, are :)

  • by Balial ( 39889 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:00PM (#50125343) Homepage

    I'm glad someone is exercising their 2nd amendment rights this way. This is exactly what the founding fathers had in mind.

    • a question.. if its an "amendment" would it have been made when the founding fathers drew up the constitution or after and if after while they were still alive?
    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      Peo's Law in effect, but I think the second sentence suggests you are joking. Currently modded 50/50 insightful and funny.

  • Wasn't this the plot of iZombie, like, three weeks ago? At very least, this is old news.

  • Neat (Score:5, Informative)

    by ArylAkamov ( 4036877 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:09PM (#50125391)

    Cool project, and it doesn't appear to be illegal (Yet). The definition of a machine gun by the ATF is a gun that fires multiple rounds per trigger pull. There are several companies that manufacture guns with electronic triggers.

    Depending on how it is set up, they could nail him for "constructive possession". But assuming this is just a servo and the gun has not been modified, it appears to meet their rules. Then again, the way the ATF is known for having vague definitions and making examples out of people. There was a short period of time where they considered a shoelace to be a machine gun.

    http://www.everydaynodaysoff.c... []

    If they want, they can call constructive possession on just about anyone. Not the people you want to piss off.

  • Screw the ATF (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mi ( 197448 ) <> on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:16PM (#50125429) Homepage Journal

    use of a solenoid trigger would class the device as an automatic weapon under ATF rules

    What's ATF? A bunch of busybodies seeking to control our use of alcohol, tobacco, and firearms — all perfectly legal things. Dissolution of that agency is long overdue — it should never have been created in the first place...

    • "What's ATF?"

      The greatest potential convenience store name on the planet?
    • The Canadian-German scifi series "Lexx" had the ATF in complete control of the USA, and effectively the world, in the final season (2002). Nigel Bennett plays the head of the ATF like Lucifer as a being of temptation, and having control of alcohol, tobacco, and firearms gives him a lot to tempt with. Way ever the top, but the power of that agency is worth questioning in such a way since the three things don't really go together.
      "Lexx" is generally so way out there that watching a single season is not goin
    • They're not perfectly legal, they have all kinds of laws restricting the where and the who and the when and the why. Not that what's legal and what's right are the same thing, in the first place.
  • Drones can interrupt crime in progress and in many cases I see nothing at all wrong with shooting the criminals. Imagine a ranch or large farm with crime issues or wild hogs ripping up crops at night. What better use for a drone than to exterminate wold hogs or people trying to steal live stock or farm equipment in the wee hours of night?
  • by heretic108 ( 454817 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:36PM (#50125515)
    (Apart from any observations about how technological advances are largely driven by porn and guns)...

    I can see some people mounting camera-sighted scope rifles on their drones. Protecting the lives of controversial public figures has suddenly become a whole lot more difficult. Expect an arms-war of RF jamming and anti-drone drones, and countermeasures to these, in endless iterations.
    • RF jamming is worthless since there is OSS hardware and software for full autonomy and I know of at least one that will run OpenCV natively so they have facial recognition on top of it.

      Easier, for now at least, would be listening devices to pick up the distinct patterns of sound generated by a multi rotor. This too has already been done with commodity hardware and OSS software. The sound is distinct enough that it can be picked up pretty far away even in noisy conditions. Certainly from the distance you

  • by Trachman ( 3499895 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @09:37PM (#50125519) Journal []

    Check out FPS Russia video made three years ago with 27Million views. Handgun yielding quadcopter is a bit amateurish compared to the automatic weapon merged with the quadcopter.

    Imagine what a quadcopter upgraded with high speed internet, nightvision optics and with the extended range (made possible with advanced batteries) could do.

    Heck, drones are already used for smuggling operations.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      You know this is fake right?

  • You got problems. If you are going to shoot at drones, they can now shoot back!

    PS What happened this afternoon? This would not be so low but I couldn't post before!

  • 9 years ago: []

    Probably done a lot earlier than that.

    Why is it that R/C helicopter with 2 blades == good, but 4 blades on a "drone" == scary evil skynet?

    • Why is it that a rifle with a wood stock == good, but a fold out black stock on an "assault rifle" == scary evil murder weapon?
      • Why is it that a rifle with a wood stock == good, but a fold out black stock on an "assault rifle" == scary evil murder weapon?

        If you have a rifle with a wood stock you can knock someones brains out with it. Hit them with the plastic folding stock and you'll just piss them off.

        So the wooden stock weapon is obviously way more dangerous.

      • by Alioth ( 221270 )

        I would have thought the answer to that is obvious: most guns with folding stocks are a lot easier to conceal, and someone wanting to do something bad with a rifle would want to take one that they can conceal en-route. An old Lee-Enfield 303 with a wooden stock isn't so easy for the school shooter to conceal on his way to committing the crime.

        • An old Lee-Enfield 303 with a wooden stock isn't so easy for the school shooter to conceal on his way to committing the crime.

          Because it's impossible to remove either part of the wooden stock, making it a 'sporterized' model, or most of the wooden stock, making it harder to aim, but more concealable.

          And it's sure as fuck impossible to replace the stock, or even chop most of it off, drill some holes for large dowels in one end, some holes in the other end, conceal them, and mate them together when you're r

  • I was on the verge of getting concerned about someone possibly using drones to perform illegal assassinations but I realized that a RC quadcopter with a pistol attached isn't anywhere near the threat of the use of government drones in the killing of american citizens without due process.

    Possibly any machine can be used to kill or destroy. The real trick is using them to create. Post more videos of that!

  • I am surprised it took this long for a video that looks like it is not CGI, showing reasonable mostly off-the-shelf hardware demonstrating a firearm.

    I am not surprised by anything in the video.

    • by Cederic ( 9623 )

      I don't get why you'd even try.

      Surely strip the firearm down to the essentials - barrel, chamber, pin, trigger mechanism and the magazine/reload bits. No, I can't remember the proper names, and no, I don't care.

      My point is that you don't need the sights, the grip, the safety catch.. the tripod mount, the carry handle, the sling hooks, the stock, the under barrel grenade launcher..

      Ok, I changed my mind. Ditch everything else, keep the grenade launcher.

      But cut the weight! It's not that hard to dismantle a fir

      • Well, yes that is an option. Problem with reducing the mass of semi-automatic handguns is many of the parts that are held are doing double duty for the user interface (grip, magazine holder). By the time you strip it down much of it needs to be custom fabricated. Suddenly it is no longer an off-the-shelf build. Sights are very little weight. Maybe stripping a rifle would get the results you are indicating.

        The point is have you looked at quadcopter control boards recently? Every control board has activ

  • by I don't want to spen ( 638810 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @10:52PM (#50125823) Journal
    I mean, you have to admire the technology, but eyebrows? On a drone?
  • Wouldn't it be easier to mount, say, 4 model rockets on wires under it? Electronic ignition and off you go. If you want them to make holes in things, well, put a nail sticking out of the nose. Pick your engine size based on your required damage.

    Woosh. The first flying Gyrojet...

  • This guy did it last week, except using his head instead of a drone: []

    Of course, Texas, not to be outdone by some goddamn yankee, had to try to outdo him in the "where can I attach something that explodes" department: []

    I have high hopes for the "let's attach a gun to a drone" idea. It could get very entertaining.

  • by Charcharodon ( 611187 ) on Thursday July 16, 2015 @11:18PM (#50125921)
    Why put a gun on a drone, because fuck you that's why.

    Looks like the NRA has some more work to do, since someone will try to ban this too.

  • Someone/somewhere will put a large firework on a drone and fly it around. Then someone will put firecrackers. Then someone will put a grenade/IED. Kinda inevitable, bad guys will put bad things to kill people. A drone can get further range than throwing. Rockets work but can you get them into the spot you'd want to take someone out? Only surprise to me is if Hollywood hasn't done it yet. They've shown it a few times with a radio controlled toy car (Dead Pool I think).
  • Why gun? Why not a servo releasing anthrax?

  • FPS Russia already demo-ed a machine gun firing drone. []

    Why is the single shot pistol making waves?

  • by cstacy ( 534252 ) on Friday July 17, 2015 @07:55AM (#50127063)

    Hunter Seeker []

  • About 1.24 million people die each year on the world's roads and between 20 and 50 million sustain non-fatal injuries. []

    If we compare injuries from consumer recreational drones with cars' accidents, tens of millions of them each year, the figure would be miniscule, almost nonexistent.
  • A drone that fires a pistol (yawn). Several months ago, FPSRussia posted a video about a drone that is armed with a MACHINE GUN and I don't remember anyone having a fit about it... []

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