Today's Meet the Developers profile is Jani Hirvinen, who is one of the leaders of the ArduCopter project. Jani is one of our core team members, is always on the Sunday night dev call and is constantly testing new code, suggesting improvments and extending the platform to new airframes and configurations. He's got boundless energy and seems to always be working!


One of his most impressive contributions was the hardware design for the official ArduCopter frames, motors and whole concept including firmwares, which he did almost single-handedly and really accelerated the project. Jani's one of the DIY Drones entrepreneurial sucess stories, too. He got so into the project that he made it his job, and now runs jDrones, which is both a manufacturing operation and retail store, full time out of Bangkok.


Name:Jani Hirvinen

Nationality: Finnish

Home: Bangkok, Thailand

Dev role: ArduCopter hardware leader, bug hunter and extreme tester.

Day job: Running jDrones, ArduCopter & UAV parts development and production in multiple countries. HQ as in Bangkok

Background: After working a long time with AeroQuad and many other multicopters, the move to ArduCopter project was convenient. When DIY Drones wanted to move towards multirotors and ArduCopter was born, I joined to ArduCopter dev team as one of it's original members and we created well known ArduCopter frames and kits as they are known these days. 

First we created basic ArduCopter software as a merge from AeroQuad and Joses codebases. We quickly saw that it was not that path that we want to go so me and Jose created new architecture for ArduCopter and ArduCopterNG was born. ArduCopterNG was big step towards ArduPilot Mega code bases

Nowdays all my time goes on parts development, management issues, dealing out with all our suppliers, looking new and better parts to help you all our users out there, testing and crashing a lot on our products so our users not need to crash them :)

Personal History: Born in Helsinki, Finland 1969 to aviation full family as dad used to be Captain on Finnair and flight instructor, Naturally Mom had her flight licenses and flew often if had time from her car racing career. Started electronics on age of 4 and got my first computer on age of 6. Hobby airplanes came along age of 8. Having degrees on Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science. Last 20 years been running Global Internet service providers,  IT Training & Consult projects and working on high tech technology transfers between Finland and Thailand. Now living full time in land of smiles and working like crazy on jDrones and DIYDrones related projects. 

Motto: There are no stupid questions... Learn something new every day, if not it's a boring day. (not fan of boring days)

Other hobbies: R/C Heli flying, Electronics, Occasional Paragliding, Sailplane flying, Ice Skating (yes in Bangkok... hey i'm from Finland). Among many other things if there are any free time left, which has not been the case lately.

Views: 3808

Comment by Sebastian Gralla on August 18, 2011 at 12:44pm

yep, he's the man behind arducopter frame and a lot of software :)

I will always continue helping this project grow, thanks for your contributions :)

Comment by Awni Hafedh on August 18, 2011 at 1:54pm

I met Jani on the chat when I first started my interest with Arducopters, he is the man, he is always there to help in any means necessary even if he is too busy, I can not thank him enough for all his help, and I will always respect and appreciate all his work and assistance. Thanks Jani

Comment by Sandro Benigno on August 18, 2011 at 2:29pm

Is a pleasure being working with Jani. Since I joined the group he is a reference to me.
"There are no stupid questions." That's why I'm used to ask him about the things. LOL
One of the most awe things about Jani is that if you give to him a good idea he'll amplify it to the top notch level.
So, is quite fair when you read "he did almost single-handedly". Everybody brought some ideas, but what and how he did it... is another story. Many thanks master!

Comment by Juan Soler on August 18, 2011 at 3:39pm

"almost single-handedly".....LOL

You mean almost single-handedly ruined the frame design.  What  a shocker!  Never seen a design so flimsy.  Almost every one I know that purchased one of those has modified the original out of existence!

Comment by Sebastian Gralla on August 18, 2011 at 4:08pm

juan: feel free to create a new design and post it here ;)

i bet you will not even come close to what jani has achieved with that frame

Comment by malcolm churn on August 18, 2011 at 4:10pm

Hi Jani good to meet you :)..... flew martins quad recently.. superb stuff.

Comment by malcolm churn on August 18, 2011 at 4:23pm

hi ok. we are just meeting some of the coders/designers from DIYD.

If you have an issue with a quad i suggest you pm jani.....

Looking through your posts i didn't think u flew an Arducopter?


Comment by Juan Soler on August 18, 2011 at 4:26pm
Sebastian, Yeah...sure..I am about to post my designs here for the "entrepreneurs" to profit from. LOL!! I am not one of the gullible schleps being led by the nose here.
And if you think that frame is a great achievement...well, there is no more to say Ha!
Comment by DaveyWaveyBunsenBurner on August 18, 2011 at 4:30pm

You must be very proud of all your contributions to this community.

Thanks Jani...
Comment by Ken McEwan on August 18, 2011 at 4:51pm
FYI, this was not all Jani's design as some would like you to believe.

Enough said.....


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