Drones


Razer's mobile chief is leaving to join drone company Skydio

Engadget

Razer's senior vice president and general manager Tom Moss is leaving the company for the role of COO at Skydio, a company that focuses on autonomous drones. The announcement, which Moss made via a Medium post, comes right after the mobile company launched the Razer Phone 2, the successor to its first large, gaming-optimized device which launched last year. Moss has played an integral role in the development of smartphones as we know them, working with the early Android team at Google and then starting Nextbit, where he helped develop Baton, the precursor to the many device continuity features we take for granted nowadays. But after 12 years in smartphones, Moss says it's time to "take another leap" and says of autonomous drones that he's "seeing a moment in time where a new technology is going to change so much of our daily lives, and [I'm] damned if I don't want a front row seat this time as well." According to Moss, Skydio is helping propel drones out of the "dumb stage" and into an era of "flying computers."


3 Ways AI Is Making You Safer

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ONCE THE STUFF OF APOCALYPTIC SCI-FI tales, killer robots capable of choosing and taking out our nation's enemies are now within reach--if companies and the Pentagon decide to go that far. Defense officials have so far stopped short of developing Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems (the government's official term), which could theoretically strike without a human order as easily as Facebook can tag friends in your photos without your say-so. But the A.I.-driven technology that could form the basis for such attacks is well underway. Project Maven, the Pentagon's most high-profile A.I. initiative, aims to use machine-learning algorithms to identify terrorist targets from drone footage, assisting military efforts to combat ISIS (more than 20 tech and defense contractors are reportedly involved, though they have not all been publicly named). Although supporting war efforts is nothing new for the defense industry, the Pentagon has increasingly looked to Silicon Valley for expertise in A.I. and facial recognition.


Reconfigurable canopy uses drones to move its modules around (Video)

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This example of programmable architecture uses lightweight materials and drones to help it adapt to environmental changes. Digital fabrication and automation is changing the way we build, allowing for cutting-edge concepts to take form through computer-aided design tools and integrating robotics into building techniques. Three graduate students over at University of Stuttgart's Institute for Computational Design and Construction (ICD) and Institute of Building Structures and Structural Design (ITKE) recently unveiled a modular architectural canopy that can be reconfigured in real-time, using drones. Dubbed Cyber Physical Macro Material, the 2.5-metre (8.2-foot) high canopy is designed as a "new dynamic (and intelligent) agile architecture for public spaces," which can respond to weather conditions. Built with lightweight carbon fibre filament, magnets and a variety of sensors and processors, the canopy demonstrates the possibility of'live' construction processes, facilitated by unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).


A burger from the sky? Uber's hoping to deliver food by drone in 2021, report

USATODAY

A new report says Uber plans to roll out a fleet of food-delivery drones by 2021. A drone flies over a city. Uber's flight ambitions expand beyond just shuttling people. It also includes delivering food. According to a job posting spotted by The Wall Street Journal, Uber is looking to hire an executive to help launch its drone food delivery program known internally as UberExpress.


Robotic Raven Gains Altitude

IEEE Spectrum Robotics Channel

Inspired by the beauty and flying ability of birds, Leonardo da Vinci strived centuries ago to create a human-powered flapping-wing flying machine. But his designs, which da Vinci explored in his Codex on the Flight of Birds, were never developed in any practical way. Even today, mimicking bird flight still presents challenges due to the physiological complexity of a bird's flapping wings. For years, researchers at the University of Maryland's A. James Clark School of Engineering have been moving ever closer to faithfully imitating bird flight with Robo Raven, the first bird-inspired unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that has successfully flown with independent wing control. Robo Raven can also be programmed to perform any desired motion, enabling the UAV to perform aerobatic maneuvers.


Uber's drone-based food delivery could begin in 2021

Engadget

At this year's Uber Elevate Summit in May, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi discussed the possibility of a drone-based food delivery service. Now, it looks like a job posting has hinted that the company is looking to launch the service by 2021. According to the Wall Street Journal, Uber is looking to hire someone with "flight standards and training" experience, who can "enable safe, legal, efficient and scalable flight operations." If the info is legit, It looks like Uber is looking to keep development of the program under wraps as the job posting is no longer listed on its website. According to the Wall Street Journal's report, the drone-based delivery service has been dubbed "UberExpress," and will exist under the umbrella of Uber Eats.


Uber claims its food delivery drone service will be up and running in 'multiple markets' by 2021

Daily Mail

Uber's dream of delivering food via drones may no longer be just pie in the sky. The ride-hailing giant is eyeing the launch of its drone delivery service in multiple markets as soon as 2021, the Wall Street Journal reported. This plan is described in a since-deleted job listing on Uber's website, where it appears to be looking for a drone executive to'enable safe, legal, efficient and scalable flight operations.' Uber's dream of delivering food via drones may no longer be just pie in the sky. The drone executive would be tasked with making Uber's delivery drones functional by 2019 and, ultimately, commercially operational by 2021.


U.S. Military New Secret Technology Super Micro Drone Swarm

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US Military New Secret Technology Super Micro Drone Swarm https://youtu.be/rFrB-3D2p-A The US military has launched 103 miniature swarming drones from a fighter jet during a test in California. Three F/A-18 Super Hornets were used to release the Perdix drones last October. The drones, which have a wingspan of 12in (30cm), operate autonomously and share a distributed brain. A military analyst said the devices, able to dodge air defence systems, were likely to be used for surveillance.


Thermal (Infrared) Drones Explained

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Thermal Imaging sensors are commonly referred to terminology such as thermal camera, temperature camera, heat vision camera, infrared camera, thermal imaging sensor, heat signature camera, and even thermal heat vision sensor. In this post we will refer to this type of imaging as infrared or thermal imaging. Infrared energy is generated by the vibration of atoms and molecules. The higher the temperature of an object, the faster its molecules and atoms move. This movement is emitted as infrared radiation which our eyes cannot see but our skin can feel. Thermal imaging is the use of a special infrared camera sensors to illuminate a spectrum of light invisible to the naked eye.


Intelligent Parachute Systems Can Save Drones That Fall From the Sky Digital Trends

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Drone technology has advanced markedly in the last few years, with improved stability and handling making them easier than ever to fly. But whether through mechanical malfunction or sheer pilot incompetence, there will always be occasions when we're left watching helplessly as our crippled quadcopter plummets from the sky as if it was never meant to be up there in the first place. One solution is to stick a parachute on the drone that automatically activates when it detects problems. Such a system would not only save the drone from breaking into multiple pieces when it hits terra firma, but also reduce the risk of injury if the machine lands on someone's head on the way down. Among a growing number of such offerings is one from Austria-based Drone Rescue, which has been working on incorporating parachutes into drones for a while now.