Meet The $22,000, Self-Aiming, Wifi-Enabled Rifle

Earnest Cavalli

New member
Jun 19, 2008
5,352
0
0
Meet The $22,000, Self-Aiming, Wifi-Enabled Rifle


Aiming is for chumps. If only someone would invent a rifle that takes all the hassle out of shooting somebody.

Since mankind first perfected the rifle, it's been the go-to killing tool for hunters, soldiers and psychotic hillbillies alike. The reason? It's a nearly idiot proof mechanism. If you want something dead you simply point and click (much like a computer's mouse, only with more residual blood splatter). Despite this (or perhaps as a testament to man's enduring laziness), Austin, Texas-based tech firm TrackingPoint has opted to build a rifle that does all that pesky aiming for you, while also offering a number of thoughtful modern accoutrements.

Officially dubbed the "Precision Guided Firearm" - a name you might recognize from this earlier article on the weapons system [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/columns/criticalintel/10256-Gamifying-Guns] - TrackingPoint's new $22,000 rifle utilizes a guidance system not unlike that seen in fighter jets. Using a laser range finder, a high-definition camera system and an onboard computer, the PGF automatically collects data and alters its shot based on all kinds of environmental factors (wind speed, target distance, humidity). All the user needs do is select a target, then press a button near the gun's trigger.

This is where things take a turn for the futuristic. Once that button is pressed, the PGF begins actively tracking whichever target you've decided needs to catch a bullet. As the target moves, the gun adjusts its calculations, and provides the shooter with cues on where they should shift their aim. Once you want to dispatch the target, you simply pull the trigger to fire. Even this aspect proves technologically impressive though, as the PGF increases the pressure necessary to pull its trigger until the barrel is perfectly aligned with whatever ideal position the gun's computer has determined, making it difficult to even intentionally miss.

Oh, but the PGF's list of features doesn't end there! This being the modern era, everything is Wifi-enabled, and this gun is no exception. Assuming you have a smartphone or computer - if you're dropping over 20 grand on a rifle, you can probably afford a netbook - you can task the PGF to send high-definition images of whatever it spies with its onboard targeting camera directly to your gadget of choice.

Of course, the crucial question here is how effective the rifle is at actually hitting distant targets, and in that regard, it's proven impressively, dangerously well-designed. According to TrackingPoint, the PGF has been able to hit targets at ranges at far as 900 meters when operated by novice shooters.

This is where things get controversial. Having seen the PGF in action, some experts worry that it removes all the skill from sniping, and could be too dangerous a weapon for civilians to reasonably own.

"This new smart rifle puts too much power into the civilian world," says British smart weaponry analyst Noel Sharkey. "Being a sniper is a very specialised role and requires a great deal of training - but now anyone can be an accurate assassin and at long ranges, too."

Dr. Matthew Lang of Ohio's Xavier University agrees with Sharkey, but was kind enough to address the gigantic, politically dangerous elephant in the room: The PGF makes it exceedingly easy for any individual to become the next Lee Harvey Oswald, without spending years in the Marine Corps. "If it starts to find its way to individuals that plan to use it for other purposes, there will be a lot of time and money spent figuring out how to secure any public area if the number of possible snipers has significantly increased," Lang states.

It's very easy to see the myriad ways in which the Precision Guided Firearm could prove potentially dangerous, but it's likely unrealistic of us to shun the concept entirely. Have you seen our science fiction? Weapons like this (and even fully autonomous designs) are going to happen at some point, whether we like it or not. There's just too much money and too much concern for soldiers' lives on the part of military R&D for this technological path to go unexplored.

Whether that inevitability is exciting or terrifying comes down to personal preference, but personally I can't wait for the day when instead of changing the channel on my TV (like a sucker!) I can instead just punch a code into my phone to command my ceiling-mounted turret to fire off incendiary shells into the side of the set until old Sifl & Olly reruns start playing on loop.

If all of this talk of futuristic murder systems has you excited, watch the clip embedded at top. It's an official highlight reel courtesy TrackingPoint that's a bit overtly "sci-fi," but does a solid enough job of demonstrating how the PGF functions in the field.

Source: New Scientist [http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn23571-selfaiming-rifle-turns-novices-into-expert-snipers.html]

Permalink
 

Me55enger

New member
Dec 16, 2008
1,095
0
0
So in 2013 we created a gun that aims for you, and yet the Kaminoans managed to produce an army incapable of a: coming up with this, and 2: aiming.

Also: There is a Brit called Noel Sharkey? Man this country is awesome.
 

SonOfVoorhees

New member
Aug 3, 2011
3,509
0
0
kajinking said:
According to the NRA this is what will make our schools safe again!
Well it would, but the laws that arm teachers arm criminals. lol. Got to love the NRA, they are mental. Pity americans dont think that as well.
 

FogHornG36

New member
Jan 29, 2011
649
0
0
oh too late, was going to say "in before butthurt gun control people". Cool gun, seems like something the army would use, as much as they shoot at shit from fast moving helicopters.
 

Daaaah Whoosh

New member
Jun 23, 2010
1,041
0
0
I feel bad for spotters, looks like they'll be out of a job.

I also feel bad for those pigs they were shooting in that video, they didn't even stand a chance.
 

Worgen

Follower of the Glorious Sun Butt.
Legacy
Apr 1, 2009
13,475
2,470
118
Gender
Whatever, just wash your hands.
This is the sort of thing that really shouldn't be available to the public. If you need something like this for hunting then you suck and shouldn't be hunting anyway.
 

krazykidd

New member
Mar 22, 2008
6,099
0
0
Worgen said:
This is the sort of thing that really shouldn't be available to the public. If you need something like this for hunting then you suck and shouldn't be hunting anyway.
What about novice hunters?

OT: a self aiming gun . That can hit targets up to 900 meters . That is amazingly dangerous . So where do i get one ?
 

Worgen

Follower of the Glorious Sun Butt.
Legacy
Apr 1, 2009
13,475
2,470
118
Gender
Whatever, just wash your hands.
krazykidd said:
Worgen said:
This is the sort of thing that really shouldn't be available to the public. If you need something like this for hunting then you suck and shouldn't be hunting anyway.
What about novice hunters?

OT: a self aiming gun . That can hit targets up to 900 meters . That is amazingly dangerous . So where do i get one ?
It's too easy to hunt as it is with modern firearms. Something like this completely takes away any skill, if you want to hunt you should have to have some kinda skill, I dislike the concept of killing something so effortlessly.
 

Ukomba

New member
Oct 14, 2010
1,528
0
0
Me55enger said:
So in 2013 we created a gun that aims for you, and yet the Kaminoans managed to produce an army incapable of a: coming up with this, and 2: aiming.

Also: There is a Brit called Noel Sharkey? Man this country is awesome.
You fool, clearly you don't understand the Republic-Kaminoan complex. If they're too accurate, they're less likely to get shot and killed (reducing the need to buy more), and the war would end too soon (eliminating the need all together). ;)
 

krazykidd

New member
Mar 22, 2008
6,099
0
0
Worgen said:
krazykidd said:
Worgen said:
This is the sort of thing that really shouldn't be available to the public. If you need something like this for hunting then you suck and shouldn't be hunting anyway.
What about novice hunters?

OT: a self aiming gun . That can hit targets up to 900 meters . That is amazingly dangerous . So where do i get one ?
It's too easy to hunt as it is with modern firearms. Something like this completely takes away any skill, if you want to hunt you should have to have some kinda skill, I dislike the concept of killing something so effortlessly.
I will admit , seeing someone hunt with a crossbow is pretty damn impressive . But apparently if you use a crossbow and don't have perfect aim , animals suffer more .
 

Ukomba

New member
Oct 14, 2010
1,528
0
0
Hey I have a great idea, lets mount one of these guns on an ASIMO. While doing so, it's important to loudly ask, 'What could possibly go wrong?'.
 

teamcharlie

New member
Jan 22, 2013
215
0
0
Hooray! Now even the most untrained of sociopaths can shoot children in schools from the comfort of a McDonald's a couple blocks away. And with a proper set-up, blind people can finally experience the joy of killing an innocent deer with a rifle that costs more than enough to feed a small family for years.

I see no downside to this weapon being put in the hands of functionally retarded, hate-filled, fear-mongering civilians.
 

ritchards

Non-gamer in a gaming world
Nov 20, 2009
641
0
0
Just as well America has proper gun control la--- BWAHAHAHA! Yeah, this won't go wrong at all... but it was inevitable. Don't we already have guns on a gimble that can be operated remotely? This isn't going beyond that.
 

Ukomba

New member
Oct 14, 2010
1,528
0
0
MichiganMuscle77 said:
teamcharlie said:
Hooray! Now even the most untrained of sociopaths can shoot children in schools from the comfort of a McDonald's a couple blocks away. And with a proper set-up, blind people can finally experience the joy of killing an innocent deer with a rifle that costs more than enough to feed a small family for years.

I see no downside to this weapon being put in the hands of functionally retarded, hate-filled, fear-mongering civilians.
Fun Fact:
This gun will not prove to be any more useful in those scenarios than any other gun on the market. Go learn something about firearms (including this one) and you'll see why your statement is asinine.
While that's a good defense, you really only need to point out the $22,000 price tag to put down stupid statements like that.