There's something in the air this weekend.
Saturday is April 20 -- usually rendered 420 by those in the know -- an annual, if unofficial, celebration of marijuana. If you already had plans to spark up, just consider the holiday an extra incentive to spend the afternoon the way you were planning to spend it anyway.
Some say the holiday's name is derived from 4:20 p.m., the time of day a group of California high school kids met to search for a weed garden they'd heard about.
They never found the bounty, but their legend has been incorporated in society's shifting attitude toward pot. We've seen everything from puffs of stoner humor in TV and movies to a fight in the US to legalize the substance. Now we have a burgeoning multibillion-dollar industry. Globally, spending on marijuana will hit $31.3 billion globally in 2022, according to a report from BDS Analytics and Arcview Market Research.
CNET's been keeping an eye on all the intersections of pot, business, tech and culture. And these days, pot pops up everywhere.
For instance, Steep Hill Lab in Berkeley, California, has been working on genetic testing for cannabis in order to breed it to treat specific medical conditions. Because science, man.
And Cannabis Club TV (CCTV) produces the video content you might watch while in the waiting room of your local dispensary.
No, it's not just a liquid light show set to Dark Side of the Moon on loop. (By the way, if you light up and are able to sync that Pink Floyd album with The Wizard of Oz, let us know how you did it. We never get it to work.)
Hard as it is to believe that weed is now an industry where people actually write business plans -- *shudders* -- there are still plenty of challenges in carving out legitimacy. At CES 2018, we chronicled how dispensaries and the like struggle not to get banned on big-name tech platforms, or just to advertise on Google, Instagram and Facebook.
There's even a divergence of thought among marijuana growers about the impact of the industrialization of the business.
Let's not beat around the weed bush... I'm talking about pot harvesting robots, folks. Pot bots, if you will.
Weed's newfound mainstream popularity has celebrities thinking green, too.
Rapper Snoop Dog joined the ranks of the potrepreneurs with his digital media company Merry Jane in 2015. Stoner icon Tommy Chong has gone full-on lifestyle brand with Chong's Choice, and he thinks pot spells our economic future.
Bill Nye even bought weed for an episode of his Netflix show Bill Nye Saves the World.
Because science, man.
For the record, Nye said he didn't partake. Elon Musk, however, did.
And If smoking a fatty isn't quite your thing, this link will give you just about everything you might need to know about vape pens.
Whatever your 420 looks like, we've got plenty to pack your bowl.