Okay, well here’s a thing that happened – a man from Illinois named Howard Leventhal managed to convince a group of investors to give him $800,000 to develop a real-life Star Trek tricorder. Cool! Except, of course, the whole thing was a scam, something the investors should have realized immediately given this device was going to be called “Heltheo’s McCoy Home Health Tablet”. Here’s how Howard Leventhal described his imaginary device…
“Heltheo’s McCoy Home Health Tablet, named after the fictional Dr. Leonard McCoy of TV’s Star Trek series, is designed as a platform to maximize the patient benefits through broadband-augmented in-home telemedicine.”
Ah, telemedicine. Of course.
So, how did Howard convince people his ridiculous tricorder scheme was legit? By claiming Canada was already pumping millions into developing the device. Howard even faked Canadian government documents and forged the signatures of top Canadian Health officials. To all the Americans out there – guys, I know Canada is an exotic foreign country and all, but I can assure you, we don’t have 23rd century technology up here. We make phones with lots of little buttons that nobody wants, not tricorders.
Unfortunately Howard got greedy and tried to get another 2.5 million out of his investors and was caught. I say “unfortunately” because, come on, if you fall for “I’m making a tricorder and Canada’s totally on board!” you deserve to be separated from your money.