A New Zealand company funded by the U.S. intelligence community’s venture capital arm, In-Q-Tel, has built a smartphone technology called Spike that lets anyone take precise measurements of — and make 3D models of — anything in the outside world. This technology makes use of a calibrated laser camera that can take snapshots of buildings, cars, or any other object from up to 200 yards away then measure, map and make a 3D model of it, all within the application. Spike includes a laser-based hardware device that attaches to your phone. It also includes compass, camera and GPS technology. The versatility of this new technology is incredible and its services will be available to anyone with a smart phone. The product is targeted at architects, engineers, interior designers, film set locators, insurance appraisers, underwriter/valuers, commercial painters, arborists, and others. One of the best parts of this technology is that it includes an API for developers that allows them to embed the company’s tools into their applications, or build applications over the data stream from the calibrated laser camera, to offer long range accuracy and depth perception. When thinking about the development of 3D printers and other technology that uses 3D modeling, Spike’s marketability is incredible.