California Assembly approves bills limiting authorities' use of drones




I realize the relevant copy comes from Reuters, and not Boing Boing, but: an “octocopter” drone? I count six rotors.


I didn’t vote for this dystopia


But it is the government model … so they have done a study … and it is definitely an octocopter. They will sell the two other “-copters” when they upgrade to octocopter 2.0 … at which they are calling it the hexadecagocopter because it would have 16 “-copters” (once fully upgraded).


I’d just like to say I think in general the concerns about civil rights being put at risk by blanket surveilance are probably worthwhile to consider.

That being said, I think drones can be used effectively in a number of situations especially in a state like California. Monitoring emergency situations such as forest fires, earthquakes and other natural disasters. Search and Rescue. And even monitoring of game hunting and public lands for poaching / pot farming ( this is usually done by ultralight flights and can be risky to the personell on board ).

I think in general a healthy skepticism is a good thing, but I also think drones can serve to better the general welfare of the populace if limited in their application. So I am glad that this is a route people are choosing to take. As always though, the devil is in the details.


Begun the Drone War has…


2014: Congress authorises use of drones for “specific investigations against a named individual or a specified premises for a limited duration. following judge-issued warrant”

2015: FISA court approves NSA drone warrant on 90 day rolling basis

2016: Number of drones exceeds US population

2017: GCHQ drones follow every American citizen from birth in the contiguous states, whilst in the UK, NSA drones follow all people at all times, thereby clarifying the “internal / external” reciprocal spying arrangements.


It’s a legacy name from a distant ancestor. In the fossil record, you can see the full form of the two extra vestigial rotors that proved to be evolutionarily disadvantageous.


If it’s illegal for the police to have weaponized drones, then only criminals will have weaponized drones. Am I doing this right?


I’m wondering if the wording is such that they could just use a third party private company to do all the spying and indefinite storage of data.

Hmmm. New business idea coming to me…


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