Chris Anderson's Blog – March 2012 Archive (33)

Announcing T-3, Round 3: The Reliability Round

It's time for the third round of the third round of the second season of the Trust Time Trial (T3) competion! Now that the weather is improving, there are no excuses for not participating. Valuable prizes await!



This the Reliability…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 31, 2012 at 5:00pm — 59 Comments

DIY Drones and 3D Robotics in great Dutch TV documentary on drones

It's a hour-long documentary that just went live on Dutch TV, which you can watch here. The DIY Drones/3D Robotics stuff starts at about 25:00. It's about 50% spoken English with Dutch subtitles, and is really well done. There's an…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 31, 2012 at 9:30am — 11 Comments

Report on Drone Journalism meetup

I participated in a great Drone Journalism meetup at the Storify offices in San Francisco last night, with packed house of attendees. Other panelists were Matt Waite of the University of Nebraska Drone Journalism Lab, Tyler…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 30, 2012 at 5:49pm — 2 Comments

MPU-6050 now available with breakout board

Want to play with the awesome Invensense MPU-6000/6050 sensor used by APM 2 but struggling with the fine-pitch surface mount form factor? Sparkfun has come to your rescue with this handy breakout board version of the 6050. They're a little expensive at $40 each, but it's a great chip and very much the future of aerial robotics. 

(BTW, the difference between the MPU-6000 and the MPU-6050 is…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 30, 2012 at 10:48am — 7 Comments

ArduCopter makes the Colbert Report!

Thanks to our friends at Tacocopter, who decided to base their only slightly imaginary robotic food delivery service on the ArduCopter platform, we have now made the big time: The Colbert Report does a whole segment on ArduCopter-powered fictional food…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 29, 2012 at 10:30pm — 12 Comments

Timeline for FAA regulation on civilian drones

Gary Mortimer at sUAS News spotted this excellent post from the Center for Democracy and Technology that gives the timeline for the FAA rulemaking…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 28, 2012 at 8:40am — 6 Comments

LA Times op-ed: Overturn RC rules and make UAV hobbyists get licenses!

Get ready for a lot of these sort of op-eds. Here's one in the LA Times from John…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 26, 2012 at 9:06pm — 72 Comments

Simulate quadcopter UAVs with ROS

Outdoor scenerio demo

From the Robot Operating System news:

Announcement from Johannes Meyer and Stefan Kohlbrecher of Team Hector Darmstadt to…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 25, 2012 at 7:49pm — 2 Comments

Great Robots Podcast interview with quadcopter genius and (now rich) co-founder of Kiva Systems

The always great Robots Podcast has a particularly good episode this week, from one of the co-founders of…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 23, 2012 at 6:51pm — 1 Comment

"Smart" UAV wing created with 3D printer and printed electronics

From Forbes:

Stratasys and Optomec Inc. today announced that the companies have successfully completed a joint development project to merge 3D…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 23, 2012 at 4:19pm — 2 Comments

APM 2.0 back in production!

If you follow the 3D Robotics Twitter feed, you'll have seen that APM 2 production is underway again! The hard-to-get pressure sensors arrived, and shipments will begin again next week. At this point, the supply chain shortages should be over,…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 23, 2012 at 12:30pm — 14 Comments

Cardboard tricopter

Another good one from Hackaday:

The smooth curves of this integrated landing pad makes us thing the frame was cut either with a CNC device or a utility-knife wielding ninja. Two of the three motor supports look just like this one, but the third has a hinged mounting bracket attached to a servo motor. This way the propeller can be tilted around an axis running…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 23, 2012 at 10:53am — No Comments

Hacking a toy helicopter's IR signal

From Hackaday:

[Mike Field] got his hands on this Syma S107 helicopter with the intention of hacking it. After playing around with it for a while he set out to …

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 23, 2012 at 9:29am — No Comments

Did you know the word "gullible" isn't in the dictionary?

Sigh. Prepare for loads of credulous coverage, matching the wave of reporting on the Pirate Bay's stoned suggestion that "we're going to use, er....GPS drones!....to file-trade from the sky.…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 22, 2012 at 6:41pm — 32 Comments

Open vs Closed Source Robotics: iRobot and Willow Garage face off

IEEE Spectrum got executives of the leading closed source and open source robotics companies to debate their models at a cocktail party. Here's an excerpt, but it's worth…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 22, 2012 at 12:54pm — 7 Comments

Art project of four quadcopters that respond to text messages

"Part nomadic infrastructure and part robotic swarm, we have rebuilt and programmed the drones to broadcast their own local Wi-Fi network as a form of aerial Napster. They swarm into formation, broadcasting their pirate network, and then disperse, escaping detection, only to reform elsewhere,” says the group describing their…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 21, 2012 at 5:34pm — No Comments

Best FPV video ever?

Just AV FPV, not UAV, but brilliantly done. 

[Thanks to Michael Oborne for the…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 20, 2012 at 11:30pm — 26 Comments

The future of TED talks (with quadcopter robocameras), as imagined by director Ridley Scott,

I like the quadcopter robot cameras in this vision of a TED talk in 2023, by Prometheus director Ridley…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 17, 2012 at 7:54pm — 15 Comments

For the GeekDads among us, a new community site

Some of you may know the history of this site, which began with a project I did back in 2007 with my kids to try to get a Lego Mindstorms robotics kit to fly a plane (it worked). That was part of a series of science/tech…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 16, 2012 at 6:12pm — 1 Comment

Gesture control system for drones

From the MIT news report:

Aircraft-carrier crew use a set of standard hand gestures to guide planes on the carrier deck. But as robot planes are increasingly used for routine air missions, researchers at MIT are working on a…

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Added by Chris Anderson on March 14, 2012 at 3:32pm — 6 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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