• Tag Archives drone
  • Drone racing – first win

    Back February we blogged about drone racing.
    We blogged about it twice, once to introduce it, and then again to say how hard it was.
    Well, this past weekend, the first world championship race was held in Dubai and it was won (fittingly?) by a 15 year old.

    It’s a two minute video, nice overview of the track and how they set things up.

    The track looks pretty amazing. It would not have been cheap to build, but I think you really need something like it to make it compelling for the spectators.
    I also found it interesting that some of the spectators also had first person video viewers so they could race along with the pilots.
    If it were me, I know for a fact that I would have got motion sick. Big. Time.

    Anyway, looks like it was a ton of fun and I am sure the kid had a tiny bit left over from the 250,000 prize after he covers costs.

    Drone racing. It looks like it is here to stay and will only get bigger.
    (Crystal ball time….. Schools will try and hold races or have clubs that race, but lawyers will shut it down. Also automated drone racing will become a thing for universities and the like).



  • Drone racing is hard

    Hot on the heels of the last blog, comes a bit of a…. duh, you don’t say…

    Turns out flying a drone (using a camera in the drone and a pair of goggles on your head) is hard.

    http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2016/01/first-person-drone-racing-is-much-harder-than-i-expected/

    FPV drone racing (also sometimes known as FPV quadcopter racing) is a new sport that has rapidly grown in popularity over the last couple of years. Usually when you pilot a drone—some kind of DJI Phantom thing, for example—you simply use line of sight or a video feed from an on-board camera displayed on your smartphone or tablet.
    In FPV racing, however, a video feed from the drone is transmitted to a pair of goggles that you strap to your face.

    Now, I’m fairly good at stuff that requires hand-eye coordination. I’ve flown remote-control stuff before (a glow-plug RC plane!), and usually I’m quick at picking new things up. I also knew that this particular quadcopter had some fancy electronics and gyroscopes on-board to keep the craft level.

    But alas, it was all for nought: flying an FPV quadcopter is really hard.

    I’m not sure what the author was thinking? That somehow the computer was going to fly the thing for him?
    It is the same with any skill in life, it takes time to learn.

    I have not ventured back into the world of RC aircraft (or drones) because of this one single reason, I know it is going to take a solid time commitment to get ‘good’ at it again, and I am just not ready to give it that time. (Yet).

    So, yeah, this blog is not about learning to race drones, it is about considering the true cost of any hobby or skill that you want to acquire.
    If you are not prepared to put in the time, then perhaps you can consider writing articles about how hard it is instead.

    And no, the video is not sped up, these things are fast!



  • Drone Racing

    It’s getting a fair bit of traction over here.
    I think partly because (for the most part) it is held inside buildings.
    Why does this make a difference?
    Because America is armed and sue happy. A bunch of drones have been shot out of the sky and a bunch of drone pilots have been attacked and or sued for flying where they are perfectly legal, but someone has felt their privacy was invaded*.
    Since drone racing takes place indoors, it can be fenced off from the public and televised pretty cheaply.

    Here is their teaser video.

    Personally, I think it would get real old real quick. There is only so much fun to be had from watching someone pilot a little drone around the same course…. But I don’t do much sports, so I am not the target audience.

    *On the flip side a kizlion drone pilots have done the wrong thing and flown in National Parks, above crowds and in other totally inappropriate and dangerous places. News flash. Some people have no common sense so the law exists for them, not to stop them, but to sue them after the fact.