Even though it's a federal offense to shoot a drone out of the sky, Snake River sells shotgun shells marketed for that purpose. They admit it's really just "high end goose or turkey load," which doesn't sound as bad ass. Read the rest
"Common across the services, autonomous vehicles are being seen as an effective projection of force, both above and below the water’s surface," according to the US Naval Research Laboratory. Read the rest
"Eagle was fine - she was massive, and used talons to 'punch' the drone out of the sky," writes the drone operator from Australia's Melbourne Aerial Video. Read the rest
A drone dropped a package of marijuana, heroin, and tobacco into the recreation yard at Ohio's Mansfield Correctional Institution igniting a big brawl over the contraband. Just wait until drone drug delivery is free with Amazon Prime! Read the rest
The University of Maryland Robotics Center's new Robo Raven III V4 soars on larger flapping wings that "have flexible solar cells giving the vehicle an extra 10 Watts of power. This allows this robotic bird to fly longer and recharge outdoors." Read the rest
Boing Boing pal and drone videographer Eddie Codel, creator of this stunner above of the Port of Oakland, launched the Flying Robot international Film Festival and is calling for entries! Eddie says:
The Flying Robot international Film Festival or FRiFF, is an open competitive film festival focused on aerial cinema created from the perspective of flying cameras, aka drones. Festival participation is open to anyone from around the globe. Drones, cameras and accessories will be awarded as prizes for winners in each of the 6 categories, as well as a "best of show" winner. Entry fees are $5-10, except the Student Film category, which is free.
Submissions are being accepted until the September 15th deadline. A panel of esteemed judges from beyond the Internet will select the winning films. Finalist and winning films will be screened live at a theater this November in San Francisco.
Drone operators are causing problems for firefighters in California's San Bernardino County. On multiple occasions pilots of planes and helicopters loaded with flame retardant have had to abandon their missions because they've spotted drones flying next to their aircraft. If a drone collides with a plane or helicopter it could cause the aircraft to crash.
San Berdoo County supervisors are offering three rewards of $25,000 for tips leading to the identification of operators of drones that have interfered with firefighters this summer.
LA Times reports:
Drones first became a problem in the county during the Lake fire, which ignited June 17 and burned through more than 31,000 acres of wildlands in the San Bernardino National Forest and nearby San Gorgonio Wilderness.
Low-flying aircraft were preparing to drop fire retardant over flames in the Barton Flats area when a 3- to 4-foot drone was seen buzzing between two planes. Fire officials immediately grounded the aircraft. Fire officials later saw a second drone in the area.
On July 12 — the first day of the Mill 2 fire — officials had to briefly suspend a tanker after a drone was spotted flying over Mill Creek Canyon near California 38.
And for about 25 minutes, officials had to halt tankers over the July 17 North fire, which jumped Interstate 15 near California 138 and destroyed dozens of vehicles, U.S. Forest Service officials said.
Elon Musk, Stephen Hawking, and hundreds of artificial intelligence researchers and experts have signed a letter calling for a worldwide ban on “autonomous weapons.” Read the rest
An engineer at Boeing's Insitu subsidiary proposed that the disgraced malware company Hacking Team should add spyware-delivery tools to Insitu's drone platform. Read the rest
Drone footage of a tornado touching down yesterday in Hutchinson, Kansas. Read the rest
Eric Joe flew a home-made hexacopter over his own yard, out in the the country near Modesto, California. A neighbor shot it down with a shotgun. Now a court has told him he must pay for what he destroyed.
Ars Technica's Cyrus Farivar posted the very polite letter that Joe had sent his apparently-deranged neighbor.
Read the rest
Joe started the conversation:
It was nice to meet you and your son. I wish it could have been under different circumstances, but I have to give credit to the McBay school of marksmanship. Still, I'm pretty bummed that I just built this hexacopter only to have it shot down. Also, it was a little disconcerting to know that the spread of the birdshot/buckshot was in my direction. In any case, I had a chance to test the components of the downed hexacopter. Good news is that the more expensive components (on the inside of the frame) are in tact. Stuff on the outside of the frame took the most damage. Joe included an itemized list of the damaged parts, which rounded up to an even $700.
With all do [sic] respect $700 dollars seems excessive. Perhaps in SF it's normal for folks to have drones hovering over their property but we live in the country for privacy. I will be willing to split the cost with you but next time let us know your testing surveillance equipment in our area. I'll drop a check of [sic] this afternoon.
Joe wrote back:
I'm sorry, but I must insist on full payment for equipment you damaged, as you shot it when it was above my property.
“I Watch You,” a most nifty hack by Eirik Solheim. Read the rest
What happens to all the Wal-marts when we have every last Q-tip droned in from Amazon warehouses? Read the rest