Future News

"A youth was neutralized this evening when a neighborhood drone mistook him for an invading enemy fighter jet. While the chief of police refused to comment on the matter, social networks have again been ablaze with rumours that Dr Smith Jones, who directed the initial development phases of the project, had warned the relevant authorities on multiple occasions that the drone software is, quote, unstable and poorly tested, unquote. Others say that the incident is related to the all-pervasive hacker group Anonymous who are yet to make an official comment on the issue."

The distraught mother of the youth appeared on the screen, tears streaming down her face as Grant pulled down the navigation console to look at the traffic up ahead. He was still running late despite the new interleaving software. The road network was struggling to cope with the seemingly endless rise in population and vehicles.

"My boy was a good boy..." cried the mother. "He was only fifteen... Just finishing school.. He was walking down the street and then... I'm sorry, I can't..."

There was an explosion and screams. Grant winced as he imagined the footage being streamed from the tip of the Stinger missile or a nearby microdrone.

"Detectives at the scene said that DNA samples taken from the area were able to positively identify the remains. Although the cause of the error remains unknown, Senior Detective Michael Nicholson was open to speculation..."

"The youth... uh... Who was involved in... uh... the incident this evening appeared to have been wearing a reflective material on his... uh... hoodie... The reflection pattern unfortunately... uh... seemed to mimic the IR signature of a distant fighter jet and was therefore... uh... engaged as such. Again we advise all residents: if there is any doubt at all, don't wear it. Is your fashion really worth your life?"

"Drone manufacturer Lockheed Martin refused to make a specific comment this evening, referring to their statement from the previous incident which emphasized that the technology was, quote, ultimately protecting the public within government-approved design parameters, with improvements constantly underway as further investments in research and development are made, unquote."

Grant flicked the news tab away and reclined his chair until it pressed against the rear passenger seats. The car's safety computer warned him with an alarm that this was outside of its operational parameters and would invalidate any insurance claims, but he dismissed the warnings by agreeing to the disclaimer. With a sigh he lost himself in the refraction of the streetlights through the thick layer of dust on his hopelessly redundant windscreen.