How Lasers Are Going From “That Other Pink Floyd Enhancer” to the Weapon of the Future

I’ve always wondered something. Was science fiction of the past just really good at predicting the future, or rather is present technology just evolving based on the suggestions of science fiction?

In the case of the Navy’s decision to start outfitting their battleships with lasers, I hope it’s the former, and fear the later.

Regardless, in a move that a research by the Congressional Research Service compared to the invention of onboard missles in the 50’s, the Navy will be equipping the first of the much hyped Laser Weapons System (LaWS) prototypes aboard the USS Ponce, which is stationed in the Persian Gulf.

This laser weapon system has been in development by the Navy for some time now, and it appears that after a number of highly successful trials, they feel it is almost ready for use in the field, far ahead of schedule. So far, the laser has been used to shoot down drone plans during test runs, but could also be used to take down incoming missiles as well. They are also apparently equipped with a “blinding” function that will serve as a non-lethal alternative to distracting pilots.

The Navy isn’t just itching to use the term “laser cannon” a their next press conference though, as this beauty is actually incredibly efficient and practical. The military is particularly enthused about the relatively low cost of the device ($31-$32 million for the prototype), and the fact that each shot costs less than $1, which is a about a $100,000 improvement over your average missile. Plus, if you’re familiar with the term “laser precision,” you probably have an idea of the kind of battlefield effectiveness this thing is capable of.

The system does have some drawbacks though, as there is the potential of hitting friendly aircraft and satellites, as well as the laser’s dip in effectiveness under foggy, and similarly bad, weather conditions. We’ll know more about it’s potential though when the USS Ponce is officially outfitted with the cannon in 2013.

While not the first time laser technology of this type has been incorporated into combat, the scale and effectiveness of this particular design makes it one of the more unique and potentially useful implementations of the tech ever, and could signal the true dawn of the future of warfare.

Also the thought of a fleet of laser equipped battleships kind of takes some of the edge off that whole North Korea thing doesn’t it?

  

Insanity + Creativity + Ability – Reasoning = Tazer Sword

Trying to decide on a self-defense weapon and can’t make up your mind between a taser and a sword?

Well apparently, and surprisingly, you aren’t the only one as a YouTuber named Jonathanj9969 has created a device that exists as a harmonious union between the gadgets, and has dubbed his creation, simply, the tazer sword

Appropriately for a device that, metaphorically, taser stabs subtlety in the face, there isn’t much more to explain or elaborate on. It’s a friggin taser, built into a friggin sword. When in use? Lighting sword. An honest to God lighting sword.

Oh, and before you question the safety of this device, it protects the user via electrical tape on the handle (naturally), so the only person in danger is the entire rest of the world that doesn’t have one while you do. Bonus child like logic points goes to the electrical plug built into the base of the handle for charging.

If you’re wondering what it looks like in action, or how effective it is, allow the inventor to exhibit more of the judgment skills that no doubt guided him while creating this device, by conceding for one to be used on him, and even getting in a taser sword fight with his buddy.

WARNING!!!!!: The Following Video Contains Bad Language, Extreme Stupidity, and Oddly Fitting Lightsaber Type Sound Effects

You know, I’m disappointed in only two things about this item. First that it will never, ever be available in a retail or military capacity, and that no one bothered to raise the sword above their heads and scream “I HAVE THE POWER!!!!” in either of those videos.