Rise of the drones
Drone technology spans a century's worth of science fiction and military research. "Despite the futuristic concept of robotic air warfare, drone technology goes back a hundred years. The technological groundwork was first established by genius inventor Nikola Tesla, who introduced radio-control technology at Madison Square Garden in 1898. Tesla immediately realized his invention's military potential, noting that the technology would allow man to build devastating remote weapons that would be a deterrent so inhuman and destructive that, in his imagination, they would 'lead to permanent peace between the nations.'" Rudolph Herzog delves in Lapham's Quarterly into the history of drones.
From Lapham's Quarterly