A decade or two ago, William Gibson or Neal Stephenson would have dreamed up an unlikely character from the near future who's an extremely young and fabulously wealthy metaverse pioneer living in a California mansion with fellow anime fans dreaming up new drone technology to serve America's increasingly authoritarian state. But instead, the New York Times is now reporting it as actual real life:
As as he sees it, according to those familiar with the plan, the technology can be used for many kinds of perimeter security, including military bases and stadium events, where it could be used to detect drones. Software would help the system figure out which objects to ignore, like birds and coyotes. Those familiar with the plan say Mr. Luckey believes his system, which can be mounted on telephone poles, can be built far more cost effectively than Mr. Trump’s proposed wall on the Mexican border — and with fewer obstacles from landowners.
And as you might have guessed, the former virtual world executive who's now Trump's top advisor is involved:
Mr. Thiel’s investment firm, Founders Fund, plans to invest in it, according to people with knowledge of its plans. They said the firm sees Mr. Luckey’s venture in the mold of Palantir Technologies, a data-mining company co-founded by Mr. Thiel, which serves a wide range of clients, including intelligence agencies. And Mr. Luckey discussed the idea of using sensor technology on the Mexican border with Stephen K. Bannon, Mr. Trump’s chief strategist, according to a person familiar with the meeting. The White House didn’t respond to a request for comment.
At this point I wouldn't be surprised if the Trump administration took up Luckey's proposal to pacify the poor with VR.