Computer controlled missiles

04 Dec 2005 | 285 words | technology iraq drone wars war terrorism

Looks like computer controlled missiles are all the rage this weekend. first allthetechnology blogs showcase a USB powered airdart launcher that can be controlled from any mac or PC. It is being sold for 20 pounds over at the Marks & Spencer online store

Powered by your mac or pc, you’ll have hours of flying fun with these USB air darts. Let the mission begin! Control the aim and the firing mechanism of the darts via your computer mouse! 3 darts! Software included!

usb powered airdarts

… and a mere two days later the BBC reports on a ‘new tack in cyber war‘:

A new twist has surfaced in the cyber war being waged by Islamic militants.

A message has been posted to several radical Islamist – or jihadi – websites announcing a competition to design a new site for a militant group in Iraq. The prize offered is the chance to fire missiles remote-controlled by computer at a US military base in Iraq. […] The winner will be given the chance, the group says, to fire three long-range missiles at an American army base in Iraq by – in the words of the announcement – “pressing a button on his computer with his own blessed hand, using technology developed by the jihad fighters”.

Note the technical similarities: three missiles to be fired form your office chair with your own blessed hand. Makes me wonder if the jihadies do indeed develop their own technology or if the just go online shopping at M&S.

Update (04-dec-05): Looks like the contest has been announced on the 5th of november. So maybe it is the other way around: M&S nicking their x-mas toy ideas from the jihadies?