FAA Sets New Guidelines: Who Will Read Them?

By now you’ve heard or read that the FAA came out with its “much-anticipated” set of guidelines regarding proper drone usage in the United States. Everyone seems to be making sure you know that the document is over 600 pages long.

FAA seal
FAA seal

Are you going to read all that material? Of course not.

A few people will, and they, in turn, will tell us the important points we really need to know.

One of the points you probably already know is that the whole thing only applies to you if you fly a drone (quadcopter or other similar aircraft) that weighs over 55 pounds.

Personally, I only own two micro quads (Wallet Drones) that I can barely feel while holding one in the palm of my hand.

So I won’t be reading the official document, nor will I probably even wait for the summary that those few studious people will provide.

Don’t get me wrong! I’m not saying this document is unimportant. It’s just that it’s not going to apply to everyone. And for those of us to whom it doesn’t apply, we (okay, I) couldn’t care less.

If someday I acquire one of the big boy drones, I’ll look up the details to see what I can and can’t do. By the time that day comes, the official rules will probably have changed several times over anyway.

Anyone else in the same boat quadcopter as me?

Drone Spray Hornet Gets Hornets So You Don’t Have To

I really love seeing quadcopters being put to use in places where humans either can’t or shouldn’t go. The Drone Spray Hornet is one of the latest quads to do so.

You can get a little bit of an idea what this drone can do in the video below.

Drone Volt created this machine to help get rid of Asian hornets that have been real pests in France and other parts of Europe for several years.

It uses a GoPro Hero 4 camera and a nifty spraying system to attack hornet nests no matter where they’re located.

Hopefully it will be successful in its initial missions and more will be developed so the hornets’ prey – bees and other beneficial insects – will no longer be hassled by the intruders.

Register with the FAA by 1/20/16: Pay Up If You Don’t

The FAA Wants You to Take This As Seriously As They Do

Per an article I read at CNET, the Federal Aviation Administration has put in place a fairly significant rule (PDF) for hobby quadcopter / drone fliers.

Starting December 21, 2015, they want owners to register their drones at their site. There is a $5 registration fee, which will be refunded to those registering before January 20, 2016. Read more

Venture Capital Aiding the Development of Quadcopters

Accel and Kleiner Are Leaders in Quadcopter Investment

Per an article in The New York Times, there is a fair amount of investment happening in the drone (presumably mostly quadcopter) world. The main thrust of all this activity is for using higher-end quadcopters, such as those from DJI, for services like farmland surveys, examination of disaster areas for insurance purposes, and inspections of cell phone towers, bridges, and the like. Read more

When Is a Goose Like a Quadcopter?

Can Drones with Cameras Imitate Nature?

I know I’ve heard or read many times that scientists and researchers find solutions to their problems in nature. (Sorry, I just can’t think of a specific example at the moment.) So it’s no big surprise that some folks at Standford, looking to keep cameras on quadcopters and other drones (to give in and use the popular term) from moving around too much, may have found an answer in the long neck of a goose. Read more