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Real-Life Gadgets For Real-Life Superheroes 391

cylonlover writes "Yes, there are real-life superheroes. And no, we're not just referring to firefighters, paramedics, and other heroic people whom we're used to seeing come to the rescue of others. We're talking about costume-wearing, identity-concealing, cool-name-having people who fight crime, pollution, or other evils in their own communities, on their own time, and at their own risk. Many of them actually patrol the city streets, ready to intervene if they see trouble brewing – and being ready includes having the right tools. Given that none of these people have Bruce Wayne's budget, Gizmag takes a look at some of the real-world gadgets they use as they go about their crime-fighting duties."


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Real-Life Gadgets For Real-Life Superheroes

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  • Where are the gadgets to help bring about effective education reform? :b

    (mmm, this thread will make a mess :S)

    • by Walzmyn ( 913748 )

      Where's the gadgets to make a sensible and readable article?

      Every once and a while I get the idea that I should actually read some of the articles I'm commenting on. Then I do and it's this kinda chopped up mess with pictures that don't match the copy and reporting that just *almost* tells you something about the subject and I remember why the hell I never read this crap.

  • I troll around the Starbucks with my laptop running the Firesheep add-on to jack people's facebook sessions and post lewd links to their status!


    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      "And I'm a real-life Supervillian... I troll around the Starbucks with my laptop running the Firesheep add-on to jack people's facebook sessions and post lewd links to their status!

      Well then you suck as a super-villain, because you are actually performing a public service [], and get no monetary reward for your efforts.

  • by Shoten ( 260439 ) on Tuesday November 09, 2010 @04:41PM (#34178756)

    When I went to click on the link, in my mind was a curious tension of expectations. Would it be like Jay and Silent Bob in "Mallrats"? Like the various teenagers in "Kickass"? Like the moderately-capable guys in hockey pads in "The Dark Knight"? Or something entirely different altogether, some wonderful and amazing surprise of how people can leverage technology and creativity as force multipliers to do good?

    However, after reading this and looking at the gear, all that comes to mind is..."What a bunch of douchebags. Ugh."

    • by blair1q ( 305137 )

      I was thinking "Guardian Angels".

      So, basically, same thing.

    • by SparkleMotion88 ( 1013083 ) on Tuesday November 09, 2010 @05:32PM (#34179394)
      Agreed. I think the douchebaggery peaked at this point:

      "Right now, the suit is still largely on the drawing board...We are just finishing up the ideation phase and beginning design and prototyping.”

      Still, this part gives me an entertaining mental image of some superhero trying to get tech from his supplier, only to be met with a Dilbertesque sequence of overhyped marketing, corporate buzzwords, and eventual disappointment.

  • by orphiuchus ( 1146483 ) on Tuesday November 09, 2010 @04:44PM (#34178792)
    I usually just bring guns and beer.
  • I wish them luck on the power armor.

  • by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Tuesday November 09, 2010 @04:48PM (#34178838) Journal

    Only less believable.

    • by spun ( 1352 )

      It's believable. I mean, I believe that stuff like this exists, and idiots buy it. I'd say, it is like "kick-ass" only with much less kick and much more ass.

  • by bunyip ( 17018 ) on Tuesday November 09, 2010 @05:01PM (#34179000)

    Am I the only one thinking of the latest South Park episodes?

  • A Heckler & Koch UMP, a Benelli M4 and knuckle dusters, on the side.

    The stuff in TFA is a bunch of toys, FTFA:

    Laser Wand: a toy Harry Potter wand, retrofitted with a 95mW green laser module – useful for pointing things out to the police, or letting troublemakers know they’re being watched

    Knock the troublemaker down with a round from the Benelli, and follow it up with a spray from the H&K . . . the troublemaker will now know that he is being watched. Approach the troublemaker with caution, and apply the knuckle dusters liberally . . .

    • And then go to jail. I think that's the bit they are trying to avoid. You see the first time you kill someone you go to jail. The one and only exception being if you can prove that person was an active threat to your life or the life of someone else. Use of deadly force in crime prevention is limited to cases where the crime is placing someone in active danger or (in some states) break-ins to your own home (not someone elses).

  • sad (Score:2, Insightful)

    by callmebill ( 1917294 )
    To me, these all look like indications of sad, empty, delusional lives.
  • It sounds like the guys in the article are just barely a step past LARPers in crazy.

    There really are masked vigilantes out there, one in Virginia I read about a few months ago and a group in southern Florida.

    • Are there any "Masked Villains" out there to fight against these crazy masked Vigilantes?

      Can I become my own version of "Dr. Horrible" and video blog about trying to take over the world and whatnot?

      I am assuming since Masked Vigilantes SEEM to be legal then by logic I would assume that becoming a masked Villain whose goal is to take over/destroy the world in an overly complicated scheme would be legal as well.

  • ...seem to consist largely of flashlights attached to stuff.
  • As I read this article, I was like... *really*?

    What do these, uh, "heroes" hope to do or defend against? Do they *really* think that slingshot is useful for *anything* in an urban setting?

    What's going to happen when one of them encounters someone who is really serious, and the "hero" finds himself on the wrong end of a .45? You'll need some serious shielding and defensive moves for that. A taser or even a light weapon won't work here. And then if you use your 95mw laser to blind the perpetrator he
    • Right, everyone knows that your manhood enhancement also acts as a bad-guy repellent.
      • by jazzkat ( 901547 )
        Sorry to spoil your generalization, publiclurker, but men in my family have penises. We don't need enhancements.

        Think of it this way. While I never wish this on anyone, let's talk again after you've been mugged at gunpoint. Then you'll see clearly where a firearm is not a penis poofer but a device that allows you to choose your life over that of your mugger's.

        Do you think this guy was thinking about the size of his penis when he defended himself against a mugger who shot at him?
        • by DrgnDancer ( 137700 ) on Tuesday November 09, 2010 @06:00PM (#34179826) Homepage

          I often see this postulated, but as someone who has served in the military, in a combat zone, and has a couple of black belts, I've never seen concealed firearms as being particularly effective defense against muggings. Typically speaking, if you're being mugged, the bad guy has his gun out, trained on you. He's also nervous as fuck (since muggers tend to be the lowest level of street criminal). In the time it takes to draw, aim, and fire a pistol you'll be dead. As someone who has taught self defense, and spent more than his fair share time in self defense classes, the most common advice given to people regarding muggings is "give them your money". Something on the order of 95% or 98% of muggers (it's been a while since I taught this stuff) just want the money and they leave. The chances that you've encountered one of the other 5% are much smaller than the chances that you'll survive an attempt to defend yourself against an armed opponent.

          Now for home defense there's a completely different case. Typically in that situation you have time to get your gun out and put yourself on at least equal footing with the intruder. There's *some* argument for the use of firearms in home defense situations, but in personal defense situations typically by the time you realize you need the gun it's too late.

      • by jazzkat ( 901547 )
        Or how about this one, PublicLurker? Do you really think a 70 year old grandma needs a penis enlargement?
    • by Ruke ( 857276 )

      A taser will still knock someone out, even if they're carrying an assault rifle. The ridiculous arms war on our streets only really applies if you expect the other guy to be wearing some sort of modern ballistics armor. I've never seen a petty thug wearing several thousand dollars worth of body armor when they're out tagging a building; maybe things are just different around here.

      Similarly, the laser isn't to "blind" someone; it's merely to let them know that you're there, that you're watching, and have alr

      • by jazzkat ( 901547 )
        "A taser will still knock someone out, even if they're carrying an assault rifle."

        Really? How do you propose to get close enough to tase someone without getting shot? If you're in a situation where you have to get away from a threat with a firearm, the ideal situation is to retreat or hide so they are no longer a threat. But if you're forced to defend yourself, a taser won't allow you to defend against a firearm unless the firearm is empty.

        And also keep in mind that the modus operandi is *not* "shoot
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jammer170 ( 895458 )

      For one, these heroes perform the exact same service as a neighborhood watch. A constantly vigilant community is by far the best deterrent to crime.

      Second, most crimes against property are committed by unarmed felons against empty homes, cars, and the like. In a lot of communities in America, a criminal carrying a weapon during a crime is an extra charge filed against them (even if there is no one to use it against). So a slingshot, taser, or light weapon is very effective against such criminals (especially

  • Wouldn't these be Masked Heros instead of Super Heros?

    Also, none of the Heros looked beefy or badass. More like neighborhood watch weirdos. I suggest a better workout, more calorie intake, and developing better less-than-lethal crowd control type weapons. Chances are non-lethal will just make them mad.. and changes are also good that you won't be dealing with just one.

    all imo, of course.

    • by Ruke ( 857276 )
      That's the goal - to be neighborhood watch weirdos. There are no superheros. These guys know that if they get shot, they die. Their goal is to be a conspicuous presence, to let people know that they're being watched, recorded, and the police have been called. I mean, RTFA. One of them carries around grey spraypaint to cover up gang tags. Do you think he plans on stopping bank robberies? I think he walks around the neighborhood in his goofy costume, and calls the cops when he sees someone tagging a building.
  • I don't know about you, but my Georgia Firearms License and S&W Model 66 make me feel a lot safer than these guys do. "Right tools"? There are places in Atlanta where these fools would get laughed at, right before 5 gang members pull out guns and shoot them. My college has windows with bullet holes in them, and armed robberies inside school buildings at 1 in the afternoon. Some geek in a mask running around with a flashlight and a stun stick isn't going to make me feel any safer. No. Let those of u
  • I would find it extremely disturbing for some bozo to take it upon himself to be a "real life superhero" in my town. I do not want the rule of law to be suspended arbitrarily by some nut, well-meaning or not. We do not live in a movie or a graphic novel. We live in a lawful society, or at least strive for it to be so.
  • looks somethink like Jamie from Mythbusters build to shoot cans of coke!

  • "Real Life Super Heroes"?

    Oh, come on! How many of these people have actually prevented a crime, stopped a crime in action, or caught a perpetrator of a crime? Compare to how many have been beaten senseless trying? Compared to how many who have witnessed a crime, and were too chicken to do anything about it?

    Reading through Wikipedia's "article" on "RLSH", I find a couple who do things that are honestly good. The lady who goes to bars to keep overly-drunk women from going home with loser

...there can be no public or private virtue unless the foundation of action is the practice of truth. - George Jacob Holyoake