As I’m sure you’ve heard or seen if you’re at all active on Social Media, there’s a new craze sweeping across America and several other countries. For many it reaches as far back as elementary school, and for some it’s new territory. You guessed it, Pokemon Go has arrived and it’s apparently changing some people’s lives as well as the way people are interacting with each other.
For those of you unfamiliar with the Pokemon Franchise, it came about in the 90’s and the basic premise is you’re an aspiring Pokemon Trainer on an epic quest to capture and train your Pokemon (short for pocket monsters) and battle your friends, other trainers in the world, and collect various badges and achievements until you became ‘The Best’ and beat the game. For some this was never enough, and they longed for a day when you could walk down the street and catch your own Pokemon and last week they got their wish… kinda.
Pokemon Go is an Augmented Reality application where in conjunction with your GPS and phone camera you can travel the world capturing different Pokemon and battling it out for control of different Gyms scattered across the land. The catch though, is you actually have to get up, move around, walk, and heaven forbid maybe get some exercise and interact with other people face to face. Now reception has been varied with some people dismissing it as a fad and saying it's ridiculous for grown adults to be running around their front lawns chasing Pikachus, while others are saying it’s a marvelous breakthrough, encouraging people to leave their homes and go on an adventure and meet people around them. People have even taken to twitter complaining about sore legs and bodies from all the walking you need to do to accomplish certain tasks in the game.
Naturally though, there’s always going to be someone that tries to circumvent how the game operates or one of the basic features of the game to get ahead. Like these guys, who have attached a phone to a DJI Inspire and then through the use of a remote operation software system, are flying the drone around town in order to reach Pokemon and “Pokestops” nearby, all from the comfort of their balcony. Clever? Lazy? Or Both? You Decide.
Now while there will be some critics that label this program as immature I will give it some credit as it has been motivation enough for so many people to get up and do some physical activity and get out and socialize. The park where I walk the dog has been way more active and many other people I know have reported a surprising number of people out and about, even here in Texas in our heat and humidity. People are venturing outwards and exercising and socializing in numbers, and to that, I say well done Pokemon Go.