Truly Disruptive Technologies
If we are not responsible with disruptive technologies, they will be regulated out of existence.
Mark. My. Words.
If we as a tech community cannot police ourselves the government will do it for us. As much as I was shocked to find out that "hobby drones" were interfering with helicopter firefighting in California - I was not surprised. The drone market has exploded over the past couple of years and with any technology that outpaces regulation it will exist in something of a gray area... until incidents like this.
If we cannot decide proper conduct in the use of drones, it will be chosen for us. Right now, you can go get a Phantom drone and within a few hours you're up and flying. Please do not be surprised if in the future any drone purchase will be heavily scrutinized by government regulators with licensure and certification checks. There have been numerous incidents of drones being flown in approach patterns at airports and even the drone incidents that have the Paris authorities frustrated.
I don't want to see this dystopian future where the drone market is pushed underground, but it just may happen if we are not careful. Just imagine how you would feel if your house burned because someone wanted to take pictures of a fire? Imagine how you would feel if you lost a loved one to a plane crash because someone was flying in an approach pattern? Although extreme, these are plausible and real scenarios which could occur at any moment given the lack of knowledge (and/or courtesy) that some operators have.
We can choose to do better, or we can have that choice taken away.