Ever wished to make your pet ostrich fly? Well, first of all, that’s an odd pet choice. But there’s a way of giving it wings if you still want to do it, though it’s a bittersweet victory: you’ll first have to wait for it to die. More →
DJI, the best-known drone maker in the world, builds a $1,300 drone that flies 45mph. So when an 18-year-old promises to sell a drone that travels twice as fast for the same price, while packing in a bunch of computing smarts, it’s a big claim.
George Matus is the teenage founder of Teal, a drone startup that’s launching its first product today. He says that a childhood obsession with drones and drone racing has pushed him to defer college, take startup money from billionaire investor Peter Thiel, and found his own company.
More often than not, some of the most cutting edge technology comes not from Silicon Valley, but from military companies and various branches of the armed forces. With generous budgets at their disposal, it’s hardly a surprise that grandiose research projects involving items like stealth motorcycles and drones that can both fly and swim are often rooted in military research.
That said, the following research initiative is a bit outlandish even for military standards. Over the past few days, word emerged that two military-backed defense companies based out of Scotland and England are currently working on technology that appears to be a wacky, futuristic and intriguing marriage between advanced chemistry and 3D printing.
Nissan earlier today unveiled the GT-R Drone, an incredibly advanced drone that Nissan categorizes as “one of the fastest accelerating FPV (First Person View) racing drones in the world. So just how fast is it? Well, the GT-R Drone was designed to keep up with the Nissan’s new GT-R car on a race track.
Specifically, the GT-R Drone can accelerate from 0-62 MPH in just 1.3 seconds and can reach a top speed of 115 MPH. Of course, piloting a drone at such high speeds requires an individual with top-notch skills, which is why Nissan called in British National Drone Racing champion James Bowles to a racetrack recently.
Once an activity that only serious hobbyists engaged in, flying drones today has become something of a mainstream activity for the dads (and major companies) of the world. One major hurdle for would-be droners, however, was outdated FAA legislation saying that to fly a drone for commercial activity of any sorts, you needed a pilot’s license and a metric ton of paperwork.
Earlier today, the FAA introduced new regulations designed to govern the appropriate use of drones that weigh less than 55 pounds. Specifically, using drones for certain types of commercial purposes will be allowed without a requisite FAA waiver, provided that certain requirements are met.
Drones can be used for all sorts of interesting and varied activities, from roasting a turkey with a flamethrower to capturing mesmerizing footage of the world’s highest waterfall. But sometimes you just want to get back to basics, don a blindfold, dress up a drone as a piñata, stuff it with gummi bears and make everyone laugh as you valiantly swing for the fences.
The proliferation of drones equipped with video cameras has provided us with a growing repository of awe-inspiring, incredible and — let’s be honest — downright peculiar videos. From footage of an eagle attacking a drone mid-air to mesmerizing drone footage of the world’s highest waterfall, drones today are continuously feeding us awesome new video footage taken from angles that would have been impossible to capture otherwise
The most recent example of drones doing their thing comes to us from Kjerag, Norway where a group of BASE Jumpers recently employed a drone to capture footage of them as they jump off perilously high cliffs.
A couple years ago, DJI made quadcopter drones easy to fly, and just about affordable — its top-end models have always hovered around $1200.
Xiaomi is a Chinese electronics manufacturer best known for its cheap-and-cheerful Android smartphones, which offer top-end features for about half the price. With a $500 drone that looks to rival DJI’s flagship model, it looks like Xiamoi is trying to do for drones what it did for handsets.
Although drones can be a bit of a nuisance in the wrong hands, there’s no question that they have allowed us to see the world from fascinating new perspectives. For example, over the weekend, the Eco Abrolhos cruise line out of Australia was able to capture footage of a tiger shark feeding frenzy on a whale in Australia’s Shark Bay.
Over the past few months, we’ve seen a proliferation of increasingly compelling and downright cool video footage of drones showing up in odd locations and engaging in all sorts of crazy behavior: we’ve seen a drone get utterly demolished after crashing into a jet ski in mid-air, we’ve seen a drone pull off absolutely incredible aerial maneuvers and we’ve even seen a drone equipped with a flamethrower cook a turkey.
The most recent addition to this ever-growing list of drone videos come to us via Tek.no which managed to inject a bit of Physics education into their awesome drone video. As you can see below, the video begins with a cup of orange soda being placed atop of a drone. Impressively, the drone manages to take off while simultaneously maintaining its balance and orientation in such a way as to not have the cup of soda go tumbling towards the ground.
But wait, it gets even better.
We’ve seen drones capture all sorts of interesting footage over the past 12 months, including a peculiar and mildly disturbing video of a man sunbathing on top of a wind turbine, more than 200 feet up in the air.
On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, we recently stumbled across drone footage of the Santo Angel waterfall in Venezuela, otherwise known as Angel Falls. Though Angel Falls may not be as widely known as Niagra Falls, at least in the United States, Angel Falls has the distinction of being the world’s highest waterfall on the planet. From top to bottom, water tumbles down more than 2,600 feet.
It really shouldn’t be this refreshing to see a company unveil a drone that’s actually a drone, but alas. The term “drone” has been broadened to include a wide range of popular quadcopters that don’t have any autonomous capabilities at all, but there are still some companies building real drones for consumer use. Back in February we told you about an awesome drone that can follow you and record your every move with its built-in camera, though it’s a bit pricey for some. If you don’t want to part with that kind of cash you’ll be happy to learn that a new drone called the Hover Camera will soon be released, and it offers similar functionality in a much more compact design at a fraction of the price. More →
Here’s a life tip you probably don’t need to be told: You should really avoid having your name put on the government’s drone strike “kill list.” A kill list target named Malik Jalal believes that he’s been wrongfully placed in the government’s crosshairs and he’s written a piece for The Independent describing what it’s like to have predator drones hunting you and potentially firing missiles at you when you least expect it.
Spoiler alert: It’s not a lot of fun. More →