The Defining Moments of the Consumer Drone Industry

In a few short years, the consumer drone industry has been through it all: skepticism, hype, the boom of excitement and outside investment, companies overpromising and overstretching, new heights of innovation, palm-sized gadgets capable of things once restricted to science fiction. It’s been a thrilling ride so far. In our rundown of some of the […]

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Draper Equips High Speed UAVs with Vision for GPS-denied Navigation

The following release is from Draper, an engineering firm based in Cambridge, MA. The company is developing technology that will enable UAVs to navigate autonomously through indoor environments where GPS signals are unavailable. CAMBRIDGE, MA—Aug. 4, 2017—When a firefighter, first responder or soldier operates a small, lightweight flight vehicle inside a building, in urban canyons, […]

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DJI’s RoboMaster 2017 Finals to be Streamed on Twitch

RoboMaster 2017, this year’s iteration of DJI’s annual robotics competition, will be livestreamed exclusively on social video platform Twitch starting tonight at 11pm EST. RoboMaster 2017 is a robotics competition that DJI launched that brings together aspiring engineers to design and build next-generation robots. Teams from around the world compete against each other to develop […]

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2017 Drone Racing League Champion is Jordan ‘Jet’ Temkin

The Drone Racing League has announced that Jordan “Jet” Temkin is the 2017 DRL Allianz World Champion. It’s the second time Temkin has been awarded the title of the “World’s Greatest Drone Pilot”. Jet won the final race as he sped through the Grand Tour Finish Gate during DRL’s fierce season finale at the Alexandra […]

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DJI Drones Now Compatible with SlingStudio Multi-Camera Production System

Sling Media LLC, a subsidiary of DISH Network Corp., says its SlingStudio platform is now compatible with drones manufactured by DJI. SlingStudio is a wireless, portable and multi-camera video production and live broadcasting system optimized for aerial footage. Compatibility includes DJI’s Phantom, Inspire and Matrice series of drones. The remote controller of compatible DJI drones […]

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Microdrones Completes 10 New BVLOS Test Flights

On July 13 and 14, Microdrones completed a series of test flights that were beyond the pilot’s visual line of sight (BVLOS). These flights were completed with the standard configuration of RC, telemetry and batteries on the md4-1000 aircraft that is available and being sold today. BVLOS flights are a significant achievement in the commercial […]

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Alaska High School Students Build and Fly UAVs, Explore STEM Careers

This summer, Alaska Native Science & Engineering Program (ANSEP) is hosting team-based sessions focused on career opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, including one for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). ANSEP’s two five-week Acceleration Academy sessions will be held on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus. Representing 30 Alaska communities, 139 students will […]

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UN Agency Prez Urges Harmonized Airspace Management for UAS

Opening the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems Symposium in Abuja, Nigeria, on Monday, ICAO Council President Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu stressed the importance of a globally coherent regulatory framework for the management of unmanned air traffic. “If you consider a company envisaging a global drone fleet to enhance its deliveries, the […]

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Silicon Valley Start-Up Debuts ‘Internet of Drones’ Platform

Palo Alto, Calif.-based start-up FlytBase Inc. has launched a new cloud platform the company calls the “first Drone API as a Service” offering, which helps connect unmanned aircraft with cloud-based apps and offers access to real-time drone control, telemetry and payload data over 4G/LTE. According to the start-up, FlytBase Cloud makes use of a custom-developed […]

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We need a plan for tech, not a wishlist | Letters

Martha Lane Fox’s views on bringing responsibility to technology are commendable (Technology is a marvel. Now let’s make it moral, 10 April). But I wonder whether politics and capitalism will obstruct socialist and moral decisions, as they have since Asimov first warned of the dangers and set out his three laws of robotics over half a century ago. We have the increasing use of drones in warfare; computers in trading stocks and shares; a trend towards a cashless society where a bank computer would store your e-funds, and commercial giants taking over the web. You might say we now have George Orwell’s 1984, where a large section of the population is spying on the rest.

We certainly need the responsibilities that go with technological freedom. But Lane Fox gives no coherent view as to how to implement these aims, especially as this may have to be retrospective too. I would like nothing better than to see the UK excel in technological prowess, particularly with regard to the benefits to society at large. But this may involve increasing regulations – of the sort that the Brexiters want to put on the bonfire. While Lane Fox extols the virtues of opportunity, we actually need an action plan rather than a list of “could-do’s”. Unfortunately, planning has not been a strong point in the Brexit debate.
Dr John Ellis
Tavistock, Devon

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