Have you seen those videos of robots jumping, or opening doors, or generally moving in a recognisably human fashion?
I thought those were the most terrifying things new technology could show us, but then I watched Britain’s Next Air Disaster: Drones (BBC2, Monday, 9pm).
Aldo Kane, a former Marine now ‘high risk advisor’, – and surely contender for best beard in Britain – travelled the world looking at how drones represent a clear and present danger.
And he did it remarkably well, conjuring up a dread vision of a future where dozens of fibreglass mosquitoes drop anything from your latest Amazon delivery to a napalm grenade on your unsuspecting napper.
These are certainly not the latest tech toy to get young Johnny or Sally for Christmas, but they will be on every terrorist’s wish list. The inventor of one of these drones – which can recognise humans and automatically fly around or, in the wrong hands, into them – seemed blithely unconcerned about the implications.
“One of the things I think about when I look at this sort of technology is I try to separate it from the particular uses that people can apply this to,” he says. “How people use it is essentially on them.”
Almost as terrifying is the counter-technology companies and states are coming up with to combat drones.
From long-distance hi-res cameras which could peek through your net curtains from miles away, to lasers which burn the drones up from the inside. Think about that the next time you hear of a dissident being microwaved to death.
As usual, we spend so long hugging ourselves for what we can do, we never stop to think about what we should do. And so we continue to invent ‘stuff’ - robots, drones - which makes us obsolete.
Serengeti (BBC1, Thursdays, 8pm) was a weird hybrid of drama and wildlife doc. After accusations of faking wildlife footage, it seems odd the Beeb would go the whole hog, but this didn’t convince as either.
Wimbledon coverage on the BBC, iPlayer and red button soothes like a cooling balm. The colours of the All-England Club and the thwack of ball on catgut are the essence of summer, whatever the weather.