3D Robotics

Meet the Developers: Jani Hirvinen

3689420514?profile=originalToday'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.

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  • Developer

    Kamran, sure come over here.. Address is in your inbox

  • Hi Jani,i hope you'll read this before i leave,i'm here in bangkok for two more days...i bought ardu (purple one) pre solded version,i've got gaui 500x RTF,just need to put Ardu on it,is that possible that i can come to your place or you can send me anywhere in bangkok where one can program ardu for me...? does some one have Jani's contact..?kindly email me (kamranismaeel@gmail.com) i'll be very grateful.


  • Distributor

    Just want to say thanks to Jani for all the work he put into making this almost a mass production product... yes like many I changed the frame a lot... not because it's not good as it was but because I wanted to make it my way. This is all fun and game.  Jani is a great guy that provide a lot of support and also manage jdrones customer support pretty well.  I feel we are living the days when Jobs and Gates were building things in their basements... one day we will read about Chris, Jani, Jason and all the others on how it all started... :) 

    Great to live the moment and crash/test it! 


    Keep up the good work! and feel free to always "steal" my ideas to make them reality! 

  • Distributor
    What can I add..... well if I didn't sell them, then I would have not a second thought about recommend Jani & Jdrones to anyone who asked!

    Jani is a great guy and has a great product in my opinion, I know a few different views have been raised about the frame and design, however I have attempted on a number of occasions to take my fully built copter back to a kit form while learning to fly with hard landings and the odd pilot error..... :( , and it has put up with all my attempts to date, sure with all things in this life, there might be room for improving the whatever it is, however I have not had a disappointed customer yet, and long may the success of the project continue with all that have been named and the many who work away behind the scenes to deliver the ardu experience.


  • Developer

    Well when people modifies ArduCopters, it means that we succeed on the things exactly as expected. After all this is a DIY project and the whole project goal is to create a platform that is easy to modify and fun to play with.


    For most of the users default system is just about right and others can modify it. So I am really happy about it.


    Me and whole team will continue on our efforts..


    @Andre, sopii hyvin... :)  (Andre asked to meet me next time when I visit to Helsinki so we could have few beers and I agreed).



  • Jani, kun tulet helsinkiin seuraava kerta olisi hauskaa tavata yhdessä ja juoda olutta stadissa (hope that makes any sense :-) Terveisiä Thaimaahan!

  • I find the naysayers kind of hilarious here.  Coulda, woulda, shoulda...


    I have one of the pre-order frames, and still have the original landing gear on it after many modifications and CRASHES.


    Still working well for me!  Thanks for the efforts Jani and everyone else.



  • 3D Robotics
    Ken: My apologies if I misremembered. Can you clarify?
  • I love my frame - flying continuously since December 27th. The video tutorials were great and made the assembly easy.
  • Jani is not only helpful in forum but even as support for jDrones. Great guy and his video tutorial help me with the initial phase in building my quad's which got me addicted to it, there 3 now just after 2 mos.

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