Smarter, Safer Firearms
Gun News, Gun Safety

Smarter, Safer Firearms

In the wake of recent mass shootings, the smart gun technology is gaining more and more traction. Vice president Joe Biden has come out in support of this technology this January and it seems to be a part of President Obama’s plan to reduce gun violence. (
The Justice Department is asking whether they could reduce the kind of gun violence seen in Newtown or Aurora.

In case you’re wondering, the technology would have the same effect like the Judge guns in the science-fiction movie Dredd and the latest James Bond movie Skyfall. While there was some experimentation with the concept, the technology seemed to fall by the wayside, no one was really interested enough for it to get mass market appeal.

A group of parents of the Sandy Hook massacre have, as a part of their Sandy Hook Promise organization, launched an Innovation Initiative with members of the Silicon Valley technology community. (

Several companies and organizations have made prototypes and still deal in such weapons, such as U.S. and Austrian company BIOMAC (, New Jersey Institute of Technology (, Irish company TriggerSmart (, German Armatrix ( and AmericaniGun Technology Corp ( They use various means of owner verification, from RFID rings, sub dermal implants over stored biometric data to palm and grip recognition.

Due to the technology waiting law passed in Germany in 2009, which requires all German manufactured weapons to be outfitted with “smart” technology once it is available anywhere in the world, it is conceivable that other countries would follow suit, using German law as a model.

Stephen Teret, the founder of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research (, has been a longtime proponent of using smart gun technology to reduce gun violence. He believes smart weaponshave the potential to reduce deaths from stolen weapons, underage suicides and accidental shootings.

Despite developing technology and increased attention on smart guns, many experts do not believe they would curb gun violence to any significant degree. According to the data from Violence Policy Centre (, only 606 out of 30,000 firearm deaths in 2010 were accidental shootings. Josh Sugarmann, executive director of the VPC worries that more people would choose to own guns if they perceived them as safer.

Larry Keane of National Shooting Sports Foundation ( argues that high tech smart guns do not offer anything more than a standard lock doesn’t.

Groups supporting smart gun technology believe it could be introduce into the mass market as early as two years from now. While they
may not stop all or even most gun violence, with 500,000 guns stolen from private citizens every year, it is conceivable that these measures would have at least some effect.


April 16, 2013
  1. "Interesting weapon---a second chamber and barrel with a 410 shell would be excellent." A second chamber and barrel, mounted in…

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