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A technological feat has emerged amid the Chilean protests. A video of protestors bringing down a police drone has gone viral on social media sites. These protestors didn't use any physical or gun force to bring the drone down. Instead, they used another form of technology: lasers.
A lot of bright green laser beams were pointed in unison at the drone, which can be seen moving erratically, before quickly falling down to Earth. How does something like this happen?
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The Chilean protests
First, it's essential to provide a bit of context with regards to why these protests are occurring.
video taken from a police helicopter w/ music LOL pic.twitter.com/RluWmuASnM— francisco velez (@panchovelez) November 13, 2019
The protests began about a month ago in Chile's capital, Santiago, against the increase in metro prices. This was just the starting point. The protests grew into national discontent over inequality in the South American country.
Strikes across the nation have taken place, with the latest one happening just this past Tuesday. Even though Chile is one of South America's wealthiest countries, it's also one of its most unequal. It has the highest disparity in income levels out of all the 36 members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
And it looks like technology is now playing a big part in these types of protests around the world:
Soooooo, so far judging by HK and Latin America, it looks like the essential supplies for the coming Apocalypse of Western Democracy are 3M gas masks and green laser pointers. Anything else people have noticed?— Samizdat Rave Mafia (@eatyerbroccoli) November 13, 2019
What happened in Chile on Wednesday night?
As a police drone flew over protestors who decided to rally together and in an amazing feat of teamwork and technology, the demonstrators managed to ground the drone by pointing lasers at it.
This is de real deal pic.twitter.com/L1Uul8QrSl— Chile no es un fundo ! (@lakesbear) November 13, 2019
A few theories about how the drone was brought down by the lasers are floating around many social media sites, even turning the event viral.
Some believe the lasers are powerful enough to melt the plastic on the drone if it is a cheap drone. Some believe the lasers' lights would blind the drone operator's vision through the camera, and the drone would go into autopilot mode and land as a failsafe. Others think that with that many lasers pointing at the drone, it would overheat and malfunction.
Speculations that between 40 to 50 lasers were being pointed at the drone have circulated online, and the video certainly demonstrates that these estimates may be true. If that is the case, that's certainly enough lasers to blind the drone's camera lens.
Could it be that protestors from around the world are giving each other a technological helping hand?
Some people on Twitter are stating that Hong Kong protestors, from the other side of the Pacific Ocean to Chile, gave them the laser idea:
the use of lasers was a friendly advice that the hong kong protesters gave, they proved to be useful at dazzling cops, avoiding them to shoot protesters aiming their eyes. Also, they proved to be super effective against cop drones and helicopter pilots.— Cbass (@Cb4ss) November 13, 2019
Here are some of the Reddit theories from across the globe: