Chris Anderson's Blog – January 2010 Archive (42)

Parrot AR.Drone unpacking

Super excited...the Parrot team sent me two AR.Drones as development kits! (One is for me and the other for a famous game designer friend). They just arrived, and here are some first impressions and closeups.

First, I haven't… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 12, 2010 at 11:30pm — 16 Comments

Another toy quadcopter from CES, begging to be made autonomous

The Parrot AR.Drone was not the only quadcopter at CES. From ArsTechnica, a report on a toy quad with impressive-sounding specs ($299 show price; $399 MSRP). Gyro stabilization and some sort of… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 12, 2010 at 10:08am — 5 Comments

Multiplex vs HobbyKing Shootout!

I'm always looking for cheaper Chinese alternatives to our standard aircraft platforms, which is why I'm a fan of the Hawk Sky (EasyStar clone) and Busy Bee (good aerial… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 12, 2010 at 12:30am — 25 Comments

Who should we invite to be a DIY Drones podcast guest?

We're starting another year of weekly DIY Drones podcasts, and we need your help in choosing guests. Who should we invite to join us for a half-hour Q&A, to be recorded for the podcast audience?

Anybody who is doing something cool is a good candidate, professional or amateur--we've had everyone from NASA scientists to other hobbyists. Please give us suggestions in the comments below. Who would you like to hear from?

Added by Chris Anderson on January 11, 2010 at 12:26am — 20 Comments

DIY Drones live chat/podcast with NASA's Chad Frost tonight at 9:00pm PST

Free video streaming by Ustream

Tonight (Sunday) we'll do podcast #13, which everyone here is welcome to participate in by listening to the chat live above and commenting and asking questions via the DIY Drones… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 10, 2010 at 8:42pm — No Comments

Paparazzi-based Quadcopter/Biplane hybrid transitions to and from horizontal flight

This awesome display of VTOL --> horizontal flight -> vertical landing is accomplished by the Booz Paparazzi-based quad project. Although many people have tried VTOL aircraft that are meant to transition to wing-based horizontal flight, it's very hard to accomplish the transition, especially the transition from horizontal flight back to vertical. This one does it very naturally.… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 9, 2010 at 11:30pm — 19 Comments

AeroQuad--an Arduino-powered Quadcopter

I don't know how I missed this before, but there is a pretty mature project for a Arduino-powered quadcopter, called AeroQuad (also known in RC Groups as Quadrino, which is a much better name IMO!). Rather than using a custom board, they use a standard Arduino devboard and off-the-shelf Sparkfun sensors (although they did make a… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 8, 2010 at 10:30pm — 8 Comments

Augmented reality games with the Parrot AR.Drone

I'm still blown away by how cool this thing is. If it costs less than $300 it will be huge. I'm certainly getting one, whatever the price.

The developers SDK is here. You can order a devkit, with prototype hardware, for $1,200… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 6, 2010 at 4:30pm — 10 Comments

Arduino in The Atlantic: "The DIY Chip"

Short, but sweet to see our platform getting mainstream attention.

Added by Chris Anderson on January 6, 2010 at 12:59pm — 1 Comment

Keanu Reeves does a FIRST Robotics promo!

We're working with FIRST on an autonomous blimp contest. So it's especially sweet to have Neo on board.

(via Robot… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 5, 2010 at 9:56pm — 11 Comments

Dean Goedde talk on AttoPilot

From a Parallax user group meeting last June, but still interesting. (Thanks to Gary Mortimer for the find). BTW, the Attopilot website is down while they revamp it. Do not see the GoDaddy parking page and freak out...should be up again…

Added by Chris Anderson on January 5, 2010 at 4:39pm — No Comments

Come to AUVSI meeting this Friday at NASA Ames

DIY Drones is a sponsor of the AUVSI Silicon Valley one-day meeting at NASA Ames this Friday (Jan 8), focusing on UAV use for fires and other emergency response. We get a free guest pass as a result, which I'll give to the first person who asks for it in the comments below (you must be a US Citizen or permanent resident, due to NASA rules).

Here's the description:

"The Silicon Valley Chapter, AUVSI will conduct a… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 5, 2010 at 4:30pm — 3 Comments

DIY Drones now at 7,000 members!

Today we hit another milestone, with 7,000 members. Over the past year, traffic on DIY Drones has grown more than 3x, from an average of 5,000 page views per day a year ago, to 18,000 today, with a current average of 5,000 vistors per day. We are adding 1,000 members every 70 days, or an average of 14 a day, a pace that is… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 5, 2010 at 11:30am — 6 Comments

Housekeeping note--blog post or forum thread?

Just a reminder to the community members and especially the moderators: blog posts are for information of general interest to the community. Questions and requests for help should be posted in the discussion forum. Moderators: If someone accidentally submits a blog post that should have been in the discussion forum, do not approve it. Instead, copy it and paste it into a PM to author, asking them nicely to repost in the discussion forum. Then delete the post.

If we work hard… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 5, 2010 at 8:35am — 3 Comments

Modular board strategy for ArduPilot Mega

In a previous post, I discussed our mainboard approach for ArduPilot Mega. In this post, I'd like to share our thinking about the expansion boards ("shields", in Arduino-speak).

As you can see in the above diagram, the core ArduPilot Mega will… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 4, 2010 at 6:38pm — 39 Comments

Help AUVSI lobby the FAA for better UAV regs

From my email today:

"Happy New Year AUVSI Members!

One of AUVSI's primary goals set by our membership has been to work with Congress and the FAA to move forward implementation of UAS into the National Air Space. While this is an ongoing challenge for our industry, we are making headway. We have scheduled a meeting with the leadership of the Unmanned Aircraft Office of the FAA this week and value your input.

I am inviting you, as a member of AUVSI, to have your… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 4, 2010 at 4:40pm — 1 Comment

New MicroUAV from Theiss, but stymied by regulation

Here's an interesting lifting body design for a MAV (Micro Air Vehicle) by Theiss Aviation. Its autopilot uses thermopiles, so you won't be using it indoors.

From… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 4, 2010 at 1:10pm — 20 Comments

An excellent EasyStar alternative for half the price

I had a great day today testing MatrixNav 2.0 on the UAV DevBoard, and part of the pleasure (along with the excellent performance of the autopilot) was my new cheap EasyStar substitute, the Dynam Hawk Sky. Basically it's an EasyStar clone, but with… Continue

Added by Chris Anderson on January 3, 2010 at 11:30pm — 25 Comments

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Season Two of the Trust Time Trial (T3) Contest 
A list of all T3 contests is here. The current round, the Vertical Horizontal one, is here

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