Kevin Hester's Blog (20)

Introducing Droneshare, the 3DR cloud flight and fleet management service

Hi ya'll. So we've been working away on the original proposal for a new much more flexible version of droneshare.  

Thanks to the help of many people (see below) this new beta is ready.…


Added by Kevin Hester on June 7, 2014 at 4:30pm — 61 Comments

Textbook delivery by drone in Australia?

Or is it just marketing?  I have a hard time seeing how this works financially...

As countries around the world gradually lift regulations on the use of commercial drones, a new startup called Flirtey hopes to turn Australia into a worldwide industry leader for the use of…


Added by Kevin Hester on October 14, 2013 at 9:30am — 15 Comments

'Simpler' Andropilot 1.8 released to production

Hi ya'll,

Thanks to Luciano Zanchi, Gary Mortimer and Remigijus this new release is now out to production.  

The main features compared to the last GA release:

  • Substantially simplified user interface (the sidebar now gets hidden by default in…

Added by Kevin Hester on September 29, 2013 at 11:46am — 27 Comments

New major beta release for Andropilot

New major beta release for Andropilot (if reports from brave users are good, it will go out to the 'safe' general release in about a week).  I'm testing out some changes to simplify the UI - this release includes some of them.  Here's a 'picture' of the new code:

Please please please, provide tester reports for…


Added by Kevin Hester on September 14, 2013 at 12:30pm — 5 Comments

Andropilot beta release 1.7.00 - Improved support for AC 3.01

This is the first major release in a while.  It adds a bunch of small features to copter (including geofence).  


* Add support for copter style fences (plane was already supported)

* Dramatically speed up parameter download over low quality links

* We now show progress bar as parameters are being downloaded

* Update autodocs for…


Added by Kevin Hester on September 2, 2013 at 5:00pm — 7 Comments

Droneshare back online thanks to 3DR and Mongolab

Hi ya'll,

So yesterday the 'free' database I was using for droneshare filled up (wow!  some days you are uploading 100 flights a day).  3D Robotics was already providing the web hosting (yay!) and now MongoLab has donated six months of database…


Added by Kevin Hester on August 13, 2013 at 3:00pm — No Comments

You really should use a radio GCS (even if you are new)

I frequently read posts where folks 'think' their vehicle was in mode X or the battery was 'probably' getting low.  And then they crash...  Please read on for how to avoid this...

So the main reason I wrote …


Added by Kevin Hester on August 11, 2013 at 1:00pm — 44 Comments

Droneshare moved to a beefier server (thanks to 3D Robotics)

Hi ya'll,

So Droneshare has become popular enough I was running out of compute resources on my free Heroku instance.  3D Robotics has been kind enough to donate an…


Added by Kevin Hester on July 15, 2013 at 7:30pm — 7 Comments

Please do three small things to help create

Hi ya'll,

I just posted about this on the APM dev list, but it would be great to get some participation in a drones.stackexchange site.  For those not familar stackexchange/stackoverflow is a great web format for asking questions and getting answers.  The person who asks the question marks the best answer…


Added by Kevin Hester on May 29, 2013 at 12:00pm — 12 Comments

Droneshare now warns about suspect parameter values

A couple of weeks ago Tridge mentioned an idea: It would be great if droneshare scanned uploaded tlogs for parameters that are outside of the recommended range. 

I've just now gotten around to adding this feature, so now any time you upload a flight via the webpage or Andropilot it will check the parameters against the recommended values in the APM source…


Added by Kevin Hester on May 27, 2013 at 6:29pm — 8 Comments

If you want to see flights by others...

It seems the most of the bugs have been worked out, so I'm taking droneshare out of beta.  If you'd like to give it a shot it is now a standard feature of Andropilot, just pick a username and password in settings.

For instance, in the table above, here's the flights today (Norway, Canada and…


Added by Kevin Hester on May 12, 2013 at 12:30pm — 10 Comments

Google Maps for sharing flying locations (San Francisco example)

Hi ya'll,

So the Google maps 'My places' feature is a great way to share locations where UAV hobbyists can fly their vehicles.  Just have someone in your local club create a new 'my place' and then plop down a few markers with descriptions.  Once they have created the place, they can then click on "Collaborate" and list users who are allowed to edit the map (or…


Added by Kevin Hester on May 11, 2013 at 10:06am — 10 Comments

Droneshare now a standard part of Andropilot

Hi ya'll,

So the latest version of Andropilot now includes optional droneshare uploads so you can share your flights with friends.  

Other recent Andropilot features:

  • Gamepad support
  • Extra display panels for 10" tablets
  • Strings are localized to allow non english versions…

Added by Kevin Hester on April 24, 2013 at 8:39pm — 4 Comments

Archos Gamepad support added to Andropilot 1.3.02

Hi ya'll,

I've added 'alpha test' support for the Archos Gamepad to Andropilot. I'll post a video soon and do a test flight with my Bixler before declaring it beta. Many thanks to Robert W, Earl C, Jack O, Linus P, Anthony G, Robert L, Jeremy Z and Rana for buying this tablet so I could develop this feature. I'll fly with it for the next few weeks and give…


Added by Kevin Hester on April 6, 2013 at 8:00pm — 17 Comments

Ten dollar telemetry - Bluetooth support added to Andropilot thanks to...

... DIYDrones member Pieter

Pieter was kind enough to send me this Bluetooth adapter.  As it turns out it was trivial to add support for using this device to talk to APMs.  Instructions are included below...

So, why would you want to do such a thing:

  • You currently…

Added by Kevin Hester on March 21, 2013 at 9:12pm — 32 Comments

Droneshare: Alpha testers wanted for a new dronesharing webapp

Hi ya'll,

I'm developing a new drone sharing webapp:   Here's a screenshot, see below for more information...

So, while I was developing Andropilot I found myself frequently…


Added by Kevin Hester on March 3, 2013 at 1:30pm — 17 Comments

Andropilot 1.0 released

Hi ya'll. With the kind help of a number of testers, wiki writers and users it seems like Andropilot is now out of beta.  So if you'd like an Android based ground control station I think is is basically ready for general deployment.  You can download it from the…


Added by Kevin Hester on February 20, 2013 at 5:30pm — 12 Comments

A proposal for 3G control


I recently posted in a forum about how to add 3G uplink to a UAV model.  This project seems really fun to me, so I'm thinking about writing the software to make it happen (a little web server and some new features for Andropilot).  

However, the bummer is that some uses…


Added by Kevin Hester on February 18, 2013 at 10:00am — 19 Comments

Android Ground Controller, beta release

So a few weeks ago I started writing a ground controller for Android (using a spiffy mavlink library - see credits).  With the help of a few kind alpha testers, it seems to work pretty well now.

Current features:

  • Direct control & monitoring of ArduPlane/Copter with no PC required.  Just a $5 USB adapter…

Added by Kevin Hester on February 2, 2013 at 1:30pm — 12 Comments

Android Ground Controller, alpha release

Hi ya'll,

So I started off by writing some software to have an arduplane fly in formation with a human piloted hang-glider.   I still plan to finish this project, but I noticed there was a lack of an Android ground controller for Mavlink/Arduplane.  Since much of the code I was writing for my formation flying project was in…


Added by Kevin Hester on January 22, 2013 at 8:01pm — 85 Comments

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