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A New Human-Seeking Drone, Much Cheaper Than a Predator

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the you'd-still-need-a-high-allowance dept.

Canada 178

An anonymous reader writes with this envy-inspiring bit from Gizmodo on the Aeryon Scout Quadrotor: "The drone, packing a camera that can ID a human from almost two miles away (using a standard digital cam or thermal vision), can be hand-assembled. Once in the sky, it gyro-orients itself to track whatever it is you're tracking, can hit speeds of over 30 MPH, and is all controllable with a touch remote. Tap a target, and watch the drone zoom over. It's not going to rain down any Hellfire missiles, but hey, it only weighs a kilogram."

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The real question is: (2)

spaceplanesfan (2120596) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053224)

Can it detect hot chicks?

Re:The real question is: (5, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053322)

You want infra red for that - oh wait...

Re:The real question is: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36054268)

What difference could that make ?

You'll never get in their pants.

Re:The real question is: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36054506)

Can it detect hot chicks?

Only Sarah Connor...

Hand assembled? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053228)

"can be hand-assembled..."

I can't be the only one whose first thought was, "Well, I can understand not wanting to use a high level language in its firmware, but we've had assemblers for a long time now and they're really pretty good by now."

Re:Hand assembled? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053470)

You're an idiot.

Get your own: Parrot AR Drone (4, Interesting)

aqui (472334) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053520)

You can get your own:

Here:
http://www.futureshop.ca/en-CA/product/parrot-parrot-ar-drone-ipod-iphone-ipad-controlled-quadricopter-orange-blue-pf720002ag/10156982.aspx?path=81e4f1876418f65ce283409ba0d00969en02 [futureshop.ca]

for $330 Canadian this baby flies for 20 min. indoors and out self stabilizes and hovers, and can be controlled via your iphone or your computer via wifi
and has two onboard cameras (one forward facing one downward facing.

It's made by AR Drone
http://ardrone.parrot.com/parrot-ar-drone/usa/ [parrot.com]

It's even hackable:
http://www.ardrone-flyers.com/news/73-urbi-following-a-ball-in-25-lines-of-code.html [ardrone-flyers.com]

I've seen it fly and it's sweet. With a VGA camera its pretty cool.

Re:Hand assembled? (4, Informative)

plover (150551) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054500)

Hand assembled wasn't the only misstatement in the article. It can't "ID" a person from 2 "miles" away. The narrator clearly says "with its 425mm equivalent zoom lens it can detect a human from over 2 kilometers away." Of course, we can blame jizmodo for these screwups, as it's their article which is quoted in TFS.

Old news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053258)

Darth Maul had these in 2001.

Re:Old news (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053756)

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YOU ALREADY UNPACKED IT, DIDN'T YOU? YOU UNPACKED IT AND PLUGGED IT IN AND TURNED IT ON AND FIDDLED WITH THE KNOBS, AND NOW YOUR CHILD, THE SAME CHILD WHO ONCE SHOVED A POLISH SAUSAGE INTO YOUR VIDEOCASSETTE RECORDER AND SET IT ON "FAST FORWARD", THIS CHILD ALSO IS FIDDLING WITH THE KNOBS, RIGHT? AND YOU'RE JUST NOW STARTING TO READ THE INSTRUCTIONS, RIGHT??? WE MIGHT AS WELL JUST BREAK THESE DEVICES RIGHT AT THE FACTORY BEFORE WE SHIP THEM OUT, YOU KNOW THAT? -- Dave Barry, "Read This First!" % "Consider a spherical bear, in simple harmonic motion..." -- Professor in the UCB physics department % "Contrariwise," continued Tweedledee, "if it was so, it might be, and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic!" -- Lewis Carroll, "Through the Looking Glass" % "Deep" is a word like "theory" or "semantic" -- it implies all sorts of marvelous things. It's one thing to be able to say "I've got a theory", quite another to say "I've got a semantic theory", but, ah, those who can claim "I've got a deep semantic theory", they are truly blessed. -- Randy Davis % Did you hear that there's a group of South American Indians that worship the number zero? Is nothing sacred? % Did you hear that two rabbits escaped from the zoo and so far they have only recaptured 116 of them? % Did you know that if you took all the economists in the world and lined them up end to end, they'd still point in the wrong direction? % Dimensions will always be expressed in the least usable term, convertible only through the use of weird and unnatural conversion factors. Velocity, for example, will be expressed in furlongs per fortnight. % Dinosaurs aren't extinct. They've just learned to hide in the trees. % Do molecular biologists wear designer genes? % Duct tape is like the force. It has a light side, and a dark side, and it holds the universe together ... -- Carl Zwanzig % E = MC ** 2 +- 3db % Earl Wiener, 55, a University of Miami professor of management science, telling the Airline Pilots Association (in jest) about 21st century aircraft: "The crew will consist of one pilot and a dog. The pilot will nurture and feed the dog. The dog will be there to bite the pilot if he touches anything. -- Fortune, Sept. 26, 1988 [the *magazine*, silly!] % Economics is extremely useful as a form of employment for economists. -- John Kenneth Galbraith % Economists can certainly disappoint you. One said that the economy would turn up by the last quarter. Well, I'm down to mine and it hasn't. -- Robert Orben % Economists state their GNP growth projections to the nearest tenth of a percentage point to prove they have a sense of humor. -- Edgar R. Fiedler % Electricity is actually made up of extremely tiny particles, called electrons, that you cannot see with the naked eye unless you have been drinking. Electrons travel at the speed of light, which in most American homes is 110 volts per hour. This is very fast. In the time it has taken you to read this sentence so far, an electron could have traveled all the way from San Francisco to Hackensack, New Jersey, although God alone knows why it would want to. The five main kinds of electricity are alternating current, direct current, lightning, static, and European. Most American homes have alternating current, which means that the electricity goes in one direction for a while, then goes in the other direction. This prevents harmful electron buildup in the wires. -- Dave Barry, "The Taming of the Screw" % Elegance and truth are inversely related. -- Becker's Razor % Elliptic paraboloids for sale. % Entropy isn't what it used to be. % Entropy requires no maintenance. -- Markoff Chaney % Enzymes are things invented by biologists that explain things which otherwise require harder thinking. -- Jerome Lettvin % Eureka! -- Archimedes % Every little picofarad has a nanohenry all its own. -- Don Vonada % Every nonzero finite dimensional inner product space has an orthonormal basis. It makes sense, when you don't think about it. % Every paper published in a respectable journal should have a preface by the author stating why he is publishing the article, and what value he sees in it. I have no hope that this practice will ever be adopted. -- Morris Kline % Everyone knows that dragons don't exist. But while this simplistic formulation may satisfy the layman, it does not suffice for the scientific mind. The School of Higher Neantical Nillity is in fact wholly unconcerned with what ____does exist. Indeed, the banality of existence has been so amply demonstrated, there is no need for us to discuss it any further here. The brilliant Cerebron, attacking the problem analytically, discovered three distinct kinds of dragon: the mythical, the chimerical, and the purely hypothetical. They were all, one might say, nonexistent, but each nonexisted in an entirely different way ... -- Stanislaw Lem, "Cyberiad" % Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. -- Albert Einstein % Everything that can be invented has been invented. -- Charles Duell, Director of U.S. Patent Office, 1899 % Everything you've learned in school as "obvious" becomes less and less obvious as you begin to study the universe. For example, there are no solids in the universe. There's not even a suggestion of a solid. There are no absolute continuums. There are no surfaces. There are no straight lines. -- R. Buckminster Fuller % Evolution is as much a fact as the earth turning on its axis and going around the sun. At one time this was called the Copernican theory; but, when evidence for a theory becomes so overwhelming that no informed person can doubt it, it is customary for scientists to call it a fact. That all present life descended from earlier forms, over vast stretches of geologic time, is as firmly established as Copernican cosmology. Biologists differ only with respect to theories about how the process operates. -- Martin Gardner, "Irving Kristol and the Facts of Life". % Experience varies directly with equipment ruined. % Experiments must be reproducible; they should all fail in the same way. % Extraordinary claims demand extraordinary proof. There are many examples of outsiders who eventually overthrew entrenched scientific orthodoxies, but they prevailed with irrefutable data. More often, egregious findings that contradict well-established research turn out to be artifacts. I have argued that accepting psychic powers, reincarnation, "cosmic conciousness," and the like, would entail fundamental revisions of the foundations of neuroscience. Before abandoning materialist theories of mind that have paid handsome dividends, we should insist on better evidence for psi phenomena than presently exists, especially when neurology and psychology themselves offer more plausible alternatives. -- Barry L. Beyerstein, "The Brain and Conciousness: Implications for Psi Phenomena". % Factorials were someone's attempt to make math LOOK exciting. % Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable. % Federal grants are offered for... research into the recreation potential of interplanetary space travel for the culturally disadvantaged. % Five is a sufficiently close approximation to infinity. -- Robert Firth "One, two, five." -- Monty Python and the Holy Grail % Florence Flask was ... dressing for the opera when she turned to her husband and screamed, "Erlenmeyer! My joules! Someone has stolen my joules!" "Now, now, my dear," replied her husband, "keep your balance and reflux a moment. Perhaps they're mislead." "No, I know they're stolen," cried Florence. "I remember putting them in my burette ... We must call a copper." Erlenmeyer did so, and the flatfoot who turned up, one Sherlock Ohms, said the outrage looked like the work of an arch-criminal by the name of Lawrence Ium. "We must be careful -- he's a free radical, ultraviolet, and dangerous. His girlfriend is a chlorine at the Palladium. Maybe I can catch him there." With that, he jumped on his carbon cycle in an activated state and sped off along the reaction pathway ... -- Daniel B. Murphy, "Precipitations" % For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. -- H. L. Mencken % For God's sake, stop researching for a while and begin to think! % For large values of one, one equals two, for small values of two. % Fortunately, the responsibility for providing evidence is on the part of the person making the claim, not the critic. It is not the responsibility of UFO skeptics to prove that a UFO has never existed, nor is it the responsibility of paranormal-health-claims skeptics to prove that crystals or colored lights never healed anyone. The skeptic's role is to point out claims that are not adequately supported by acceptable evidcence and to provide plausible alternative explanations that are more in keeping with the accepted body of scientific evidence. -- Thomas L. Creed, The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. XII, No. 2, pg. 215 % FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL: #1 A guinea pig is not from Guinea but a rodent from South America. A firefly is not a fly, but a beetle. A giant panda bear is really a member of the racoon family. A black panther is really a leopard that has a solid black coat rather then a spotted one. Peanuts are not really nuts. The majority of nuts grow on trees while peauts grow underground. They are classified as a legume -- part of the pea family. A cucumber is not a vegetable but a fruit. % FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL: #44 Zebras are colored with dark stripes on a light background. % FORTUNE'S GUIDE TO DEALING WITH REAL-LIFE SCIENCE FICTION: #14 What to do... if reality disappears? Hope this one doesn't happen to you. There isn't much that you can do about it. It will probably be quite unpleasant. if you meet an older version of yourself who has invented a time traveling machine, and has come from the future to meet you? Play this one by the book. Ask about the stock market and cash in. Don't forget to invent a time traveling machine and visit your younger self before you die, or you will create a paradox. If you expect this to be tricky, make sure to ask for the principles behind time travel, and possibly schematics. Never, NEVER, ask when you'll die, or if you'll marry your current SO. % FORTUNE'S GUIDE TO DEALING WITH REAL-LIFE SCIENCE FICTION: #2 What to do... if you get a phone call from Mars: Speak slowly and be sure to enunciate your words properly. Limit your vocabulary to simple words. Try to determine if you are speaking to someone in a leadership capacity, or an ordinary citizen. if he, she or it doesn't speak English? Hang up. There's no sense in trying to learn Martian over the phone. If your Martian really had something important to say to you, he, she or it would have taken the trouble to learn the language before calling. if you get a phone call from Jupiter? Explain to your caller, politely but firmly, that being from Jupiter, he, she or it is not "life as we know it". Try to terminate the conversation as soon as possible. It will not profit you, and the charges may have been reversed. % FORTUNE'S GUIDE TO DEALING WITH REAL-LIFE SCIENCE FICTION: #6 What to do... if a starship, equipped with an FTL hyperdrive lands in your backyard? First of all, do not run after your camera. You will not have any film, and, given the state of computer animation, noone will believe you anyway. Be polite. Remember, if they have an FTL hyperdrive, they can probably vaporize you, should they find you to be rude. Direct them to the White House lawn, which is where they probably wanted to land, anyway. A good road map should help. if you wake up in the middle of the night, and discover that your closet contains an alternate dimension? Don't walk in. You almost certainly will not be able to get back, and alternate dimensions are almost never any fun. Remain calm and go back to bed. Close the door first, so that the cat does not wander off. Check your closet in the morning. If it still contains an alternate dimension, nail it shut. % Friction is a drag. % Fundamentally, there may be no basis for anything. % Genetics explains why you look like your father, and if you don't, why you should. % (German philosopher) Georg Wilhelm Hegel, on his deathbed, complained, "Only one man ever understood me." He fell silent for a while and then added, "And he didn't understand me." % God doesn't play dice. -- Albert Einstein % God made the integers; all else is the work of Man. -- Kronecker % God may be subtle, but he isn't plain mean. -- Albert Einstein % God runs electromagnetics by wave theory on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and the Devil runs them by quantum theory on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. -- William Bragg % Going the speed of light is bad for your age. % Good morning. This is the telephone company. Due to repairs, we're giving you advance notice that your service will be cut off indefinitely at ten o'clock. That's two minutes from now. % Gosh that takes me back... or is it forward? That's the trouble with time travel, you never can tell." -- Doctor Who, "Androids of Tara" % Got Mole problems? Call Avogadro at 6.02 x 10^23. % Gravity brings me down. % Gravity is a myth, the Earth sucks. % GREAT MOMENTS IN HISTORY (#7): April 2, 1751 Issac Newton becomes discouraged when he falls up a flight of stairs. % Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. -- Albert Einstein They laughed at Einstein. They laughed at the Wright Brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown. -- Carl Sagan % He keeps differentiating, flying off on a tangent. % He: Let's end it all, bequeathin' our brains to science. She: What?!? Science got enough trouble with their OWN brains. -- Walt Kelly % Heard that the next Space Shuttle is supposed to carry several Guernsey cows? It's gonna be the herd shot 'round the world. % Heavier than air flying machines are impossible. -- Lord Kelvin, President, Royal Society, c. 1895 % Heisenberg may have been here. % Heisenberg may have slept here... % Help fight continental drift. % Here is a simple experiment that will teach you an important electrical lesson: On a cool, dry day, scuff your feet along a carpet, then reach your hand into a friend's mouth and touch one of his dental fillings. Did you notice how your friend twitched violently and cried out in pain? This teaches us that electricity can be a very powerful force, but we must never use it to hurt others unless we need to learn an important electrical lesson. It also teaches us how an electrical circuit works. When you scuffed your feet, you picked up batches of "electrons", which are very small objects that carpet manufacturers weave into carpets so they will attract dirt. The electrons travel through your bloodstream and collect in your finger, where they form a spark that leaps to your friend's filling, then travels down to his feet and back into the carpet, thus completing the circuit. Amazing Electronic Fact: If you scuffed your feet long enough without touching anything, you would build up so many electrons that your finger would explode! But this is nothing to worry about unless you have carpeting. -- Dave Barry, "What is Electricity?" % Hi! How are things going? (just fine, thank you...) Great! Say, could I bother you for a question? (you just asked one...) Well, how about one more? (one more than the first one?) Yes. (you already asked that...) [at this point, Alphonso gets smart... ] May I ask two questions, sir? (no.) May I ask ONE then? (nope...) Then may I ask, sir, how I may ask you a question? (yes, you may.) Sir, how may I ask you a question? (you must ask for retroactive question asking privileges for the number of questions you have asked, then ask for that number plus two, one for the current question, and one for the next one) Sir, may I ask nine questions? (go right ahead...) % Houston, Tranquillity Base here. The Eagle has landed. -- Neil Armstrong % How can you do 'New Math' problems with an 'Old Math' mind? -- Charles Schulz % How many weeks are there in a light year? % How often I found where I should be going only by setting out for somewhere else. -- R. Buckminster Fuller % Human beings were created by water to transport it uphill. % I am not an Economist. I am an honest man! -- Paul McCracken % I cannot believe that God plays dice with the cosmos. -- Albert Einstein, on the randomness of quantum mechanics % I do hate sums. There is no greater mistake than to call arithmetic an exact science. There are permutations and aberrations discernible to minds entirely noble like mine; subtle variations which ordinary accountants fail to discover; hidden laws of number which it requires a mind like mine to perceive. For instance, if you add a sum from the bottom up, and then again from the top down, the result is always different. -- Mrs. La Touche % I do not remember ever having seen a sustained argument by an author which, starting from philosophical premises likely to meet with general acceptance, reached the conclusion that a praiseworthy ordering of one's life is to devote it to research in mathematics. -- Sir Edmund Whittaker, "Scientific American", Vol. 183 % "I don't think so," said Ren'e Descartes. Just then, he vanished. % I had a feeling once about mathematics -- that I saw it all. Depth beyond depth was revealed to me -- the Byss and the Abyss. I saw -- as one might see the transit of Venus or even the Lord Mayor's Show -- a quantity passing through infinity and changing its sign from plus to minus. I saw exactly why it happened and why tergiversation was inevitable -- but it was after dinner and I let it go. -- Winston Churchill % I have a theory that it's impossible to prove anything, but I can't prove it. % "I have examined Bogota," he said, "and the case is clearer to me. I think very probably he might be cured." "That is what I have always hoped," said old Yacob. "His brain is affected," said the blind doctor. The elders murmured assent. "Now, what affects it?" "Ah!" said old Yacob. "This," said the doctor, answering his own question. "Those queer things that are called the eyes, and which exist to make an agreeable soft depression in the face, are diseased, in the case of Bogota, in such a way as to affect his brain. They are greatly distended, he has eyelashes, and his eyelids move, and cosequently his brain is in a state of constant irritation and distraction." "Yes?" said old Yacob. "Yes?" "And I think I may say with reasonable certainty that, in order to cure him completely, all that we need do is a simple and easy surgical operation -- namely, to remove those irritant bodies." "And then he will be sane?" "Then he will be perfectly sane, and a quite admirable citizen." "Thank heaven for science!" said old Yacob. -- H.G. Wells, "The Country of the Blind" % I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning. -- Plato % I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated. -- Poul Anderson % I myself have dreamed up a structure intermediate between Dyson spheres and planets. Build a ring 93 million miles in radius -- one Earth orbit -- around the sun. If we have the mass of Jupiter to work with, and if we make it a thousand miles wide, we get a thickness of about a thousand feet for the base. And it has advantages. The Ringworld will be much sturdier than a Dyson sphere. We can spin it on its axis for gravity. A rotation speed of 770 m/s will give us a gravity of one Earth normal. We wouldn't even need to roof it over. Place walls one thousand miles high at each edge, facing the sun. Very little air will leak over the edges. Lord knows the thing is roomy enough. With three million times the surface area of the Earth, it will be some time before anyone complains of the crowding. -- Larry Niven, "Ringworld" % I put up my thumb... and it blotted out the planet Earth. -- Neil Armstrong % I tell them to turn to the study of mathematics, for it is only there that they might escape the lusts of the flesh. -- Thomas Mann, "The Magic Mountain" % "I think it is true for all _n. I was just playing it safe with _n >= 3 because I couldn't remember the proof." -- Baker, Pure Math 351a % I THINK MAN INVENTED THE CAR by instinct. -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988. % "I think the sky is blue because it's a shift from black through purple to blue, and it has to do with where the light is. You know, the farther we get into darkness, and there's a shifting of color of light into the blueness, and I think as you go farther and farther away from the reflected light we have from the sun or the light that's bouncing off this earth, uh, the darker it gets ... I think if you look at the color scale, you start at black, move it through purple, move it on out, it's the shifting of color. We mentioned before about the stars singing, and that's one of the effects of the shifting of colors." -- Pat Robertson, The 700 Club % I THINK THERE SHOULD BE SOMETHING in science called the "reindeer effect." I don't know what it would be, but I think it'd be good to hear someone say, "Gentlemen, what we have here is a terrifying example of the reindeer effect." -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988. % I THINK THEY SHOULD CONTINUE the policy of not giving a Nobel Prize for paneling. -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988. % I use technology in order to hate it more properly. -- Nam June Paik % I would have you imagine, then, that there exists in the mind of man a block of wax... and that we remember and know what is imprinted as long as the image lasts; but when the image is effaced, or cannot be taken, then we forget or do not know. -- Plato, Dialogs, Theateus 191 [Quoted in "VMS Internals and Data Structures", V4.4, when referring to image activation and termination.] % I'm often asked the question, "Do you think there is extraterrestrial intelli- gence?" I give the standard arguments -- there are a lot of places out there, and use the word *billions*, and so on. And then I say it would be astonishing to me if there weren't extraterrestrial intelligence, but of course there is as yet no compelling evidence for it. And then I'm asked, "Yeah, but what do you really think?" I say, "I just told you what I really think." "Yeah, but what's your gut feeling?" But I try not to think with my gut. Really, it's okay to reserve judgment until the evidence is in. -- Carl Sagan % If A = B and B = C, then A = C, except where void or prohibited by law. -- Roy Santoro % If a camel is a horse designed by a committee, then a consensus forecast is a camel's behind. -- Edgar R. Fiedler % If A equals success, then the formula is _A = _X + _Y + _Z. _X is work. _Y is play. _Z is keep your mouth shut. -- Albert Einstein % If all else fails, immortality can always be assured by spectacular error. -- John Kenneth Galbraith % If all the world's economists were laid end to end, we wouldn't reach a conclusion. -- William Baumol % If an experiment works, something has gone wrong. % If entropy is increasing, where is it coming from? % If for every rule there is an exception, then we have established that there is an exception to every rule. If we accept "For every rule there is an exception" as a rule, then we must concede that there may not be an exception after all, since the rule states that there is always the possibility of exception, and if we follow it to its logical end we must agree that there can be an exception to the rule that for every rule there is an exception. -- Bill Boquist % If God is perfect, why did He create discontinuous functions? % If I had only known, I would have been a locksmith. -- Albert Einstein % If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps. % If I set here and stare at nothing long enough, people might think I'm an engineer working on something. -- S.R. McElroy % If in any problem you find yourself doing an immense amount of work, the answer can be obtained by simple inspection. % If it is a Miracle, any sort of evidence will answer, but if it is a Fact, proof is necessary. -- Samuel Clemens % If it smells it's chemistry, if it crawls it's biology, if it doesn't work it's physics. % If it wasn't for Newton, we wouldn't have to eat bruised apples. % If mathematically you end up with the wrong answer, try multiplying by the page number. % If scientific reasoning were limited to the logical processes of arithmetic, we should not get very far in our understanding of the physical world. One might as well attempt to grasp the game of poker entirely by the use of the mathematics of probability. -- Vannevar Bush % If the aborigine drafted an IQ test, all of Western civilization would presumably flunk it. -- Stanley Garn % If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts. -- Albert Einstein % If the human brain were so simple that we could understand it, we would be so simple we couldn't. % If they can make penicillin out of moldy bread, they can sure make something out of you. -- Muhammad Ali % "If value corrupts then absolute value corrupts absolutely." % If you analyse anything, you destroy it. -- Arthur Miller % If you are smart enough to know that you're not smart enough to be an Engineer, then you're in Business. % If you can't understand it, it is intuitively obvious. % If you haven't enjoyed the material in the last few lectures then a career in chartered accountancy beckons. -- Advice from the lecturer in the middle of the Stochastic Systems course. % If you push the "extra ice" button on the soft drink vending machine, you won't get any ice. If you push the "no ice" button, you'll get ice, but no cup. % If you rap your knuckles against a window jamb or door, if you brush your leg against a bed or desk, if you catch your foot in a curled- up corner of a rug, or strike a toe against a desk or chair, go back and repeat the sequence. You will find yourself surprised how far off course you were to hit that window jamb, that door, that chair. Get back on course and do it again. How can you pilot a spacecraft if you can't find your way around your own apartment? -- William S. Burroughs % If you steal from one author it's plagiarism; if you steal from many it's research. -- Wilson Mizner % If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate. % Imagination is more important than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein % In 1750 Issac Newton became discouraged when he fell up a flight of stairs. % In 1869 the waffle iron was invented for people who had wrinkled waffles. % In a minimum-phase system there is an inextricable link between frequency response, phase response and transient response, as they are all merely transforms of one another. This combined with minimalization of open-loop errors in output amplifiers and correct compensation for non-linear passive crossover network loading can lead to a significant decrease in system resolution lost. However, this all means jack when you listen to Pink Floyd. % IN MY OPINION anyone interested in improving himself should not rule out becoming pure energy. -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988. % In Nature there are neither rewards nor punishments, there are consequences. -- R.G. Ingersoll % In order to dial out, it is necessary to broaden one's dimension. % "In order to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -- Carl Sagan, Cosmos % In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. -- Carl Sagan, 1987 CSICOP keynote address % "In short, _N is Richardian if, and only if, _N is not Richardian." % In specifications, Murphy's Law supersedes Ohm's. % In the beginning there was nothing. And the Lord said "Let There Be Light!" And still there was nothing, but at least now you could see it. % In the beginning there was only one kind of Mathematician, created by the Great Mathamatical Spirit form the Book: the Topologist. And they grew to large numbers and prospered. One day they looked up in the heavens and desired to reach up as far as the eye could see. So they set out in building a Mathematical edifice that was to reach up as far as "up" went. Further and further up they went ... until one night the edifice collapsed under the weight of paradox. The following morning saw only rubble where there once was a huge structure reaching to the heavens. One by one, the Mathematicians climbed out from under the rubble. It was a miracle that nobody was killed; but when they began to speak to one another, SUPRISE of all suprises! they could not understand each other. They all spoke different languages. They all fought amongst themselves and each went about their own way. To this day the Topologists remain the original Mathematicians. -- The Story of Babel % In the course of reading Hadamard's "The Psychology of Invention in the Mathematical Field", I have come across evidence supporting a fact which we coffee achievers have long appreciated: no really creative, intelligent thought is possible without a good cup of coffee. On page 14, Hadamard is discussing Poincare's theory of fuchsian groups and fuchsian functions, which he describes as "... one of his greatest discoveries, the first which consecrated his glory ..." Hadamard refers to Poincare having had a "... sleepless night which initiated all that memorable work ..." and gives the following, very revealing quote: "One evening, contrary to my custom, I drank black coffee and could not sleep. Ideas rose in crowds; I felt them collide until pairs interlocked, so to speak, making a stable combination." Too bad drinking black coffee was contrary to his custom. Maybe he could really have amounted to something as a coffee achiever. % In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is. % In these matters the only certainty is that there is nothing certain. -- Pliny the Elder % "In this replacement Earth we're building they've given me Africa to do and of course I'm doing it with all fjords again because I happen to like them, and I'm old-fashioned enough to think that they give a lovely baroque feel to a continent. And they tell me it's not equatorial enough. Equatorial!" He gave a hollow laugh. "What does it matter? Science has achieved some wonderful things, of course, but I'd far rather be happy than right any day." "And are you?" "No. That's where it all falls down, of course." "Pity," said Arthur with sympathy. "It sounded like quite a good life-style otherwise." -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" % Information is the inverse of entropy. % Interchangeable parts won't. % Invest in physics -- own a piece of Dirac! % "Irrationality is the square root of all evil" -- Douglas Hofstadter % Is knowledge knowable? If not, how do we know that? % Isn't it interesting that the same people who laugh at science fiction listen to weather forecasts and economists? -- Kelvin Throop III % Isn't it strange that the same people that laugh at gypsy fortune tellers take economists seriously? % "It could be that Walter's horse has wings" does not imply that there is any such animal as Walter's horse, only that there could be; but "Walter's horse is a thing which could have wings" does imply Walter's horse's existence. But the conjunction "Walter's horse exists, and it could be that Walter's horse has wings" still does not imply "Walter's horse is a thing that could have wings", for perhaps it can only be that Walter's horse has wings by Walter having a different horse. Nor does "Walter's horse is a thing which could have wings" conversely imply "It could be that Walter's horse has wings"; for it might be that Walter's horse could only have wings by not being Walter's horse. I would deny, though, that the formula [Necessarily if some x has property P then some x has property P] expresses a logical law, since P(x) could stand for, let us say "x is a better logician than I am", and the statement "It is necessary that if someone is a better logician than I am then someone is a better logician than I am" is false because there need not have been any me. -- A.N. Prior, "Time and Modality" % It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats. % It is contrary to reasoning to say that there is a vacuum or space in which there is absolutely nothing. -- Descartes % It is impossible to travel faster than light, and certainly not desirable, as one's hat keeps blowing off. -- Woody Allen % It is much easier to suggest solutions when you know nothing about the problem. % It is not every question that deserves an answer. -- Publilius Syrus % It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead % It is not that polar co-ordinates are complicated, it is simply that cartesian co-ordinates are simpler than they have a right to be. -- Kleppner & Kolenhow, "An Introduction to Mechanics" % It is now quite lawful for a Catholic woman to avoid pregnancy by a resort to mathematics, though she is still forbidden to resort to physics and chemistry. -- H.L. Mencken % It is true that if your paperboy throws your paper into the bushes for five straight days it can be explained by Newton's Law of Gravity. But it takes Murphy's law to explain why it is happening to you. % It seems intuitively obvious to me, which means that it might be wrong. -- Chris Torek % It seems that more and more mathematicians are using a new, high level language named "research student". % "It's easier said than done." ... and if you don't believe it, try proving that it's easier done than said, and you'll see that "it's easier said that `it's easier done than said' than it is done", which really proves that "it's easier said than done". % It's hard to think of you as the end result of millions of years of evolution. % It's later than you think, the joint Russian-American space mission has already begun. % It's not an optical illusion, it just looks like one. -- Phil White % It's not hard to admit errors that are [only] cosmetically wrong. -- J.K. Galbraith % Just because they are called 'forbidden' transitions does not mean that they are forbidden. They are less allowed than allowed transitions, if you see what I mean. -- From a Part 2 Quantum Mechanics lecture. % Kleeneness is next to Godelness. % Klein bottle for rent -- inquire within. % Last yeer I kudn't spel Engineer. Now I are won. % Lawrence Radiation Laboratory keeps all its data in an old gray trunk. % Life is a biochemical reaction to the stimulus of the surrounding environment in a stable ecosphere, while a bowl of cherries is a round container filled with little red fruits on sticks. % Life is a whim of several billion cells to be you for a while. % Life is difficult because it is non-linear. % Logic is a little bird, sitting in a tree; that smells *_____awful*. % Logic is a pretty flower that smells bad. % Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion with confidence. % Logic is the chastity belt of the mind! % Love makes the world go 'round, with a little help from intrinsic angular momentum. % Lucas is the source of many of the components of the legendarily reliable British automotive electrical systems. Professionals call the company "The Prince of Darkness". Of course, if Lucas were to design and manufacture nuclear weapons, World War III would never get off the ground. The British don't like warm beer any more than the Americans do. The British drink warm beer because they have Lucas refrigerators. % Ma Bell is a mean mother! % Machines have less problems. I'd like to be a machine. -- Andy Warhol % Make it myself? But I'm a physical organic chemist! % Make it right before you make it faster. % Man will never fly. Space travel is merely a dream. All aspirin is alike. % MATH AND ALCOHOL DON'T MIX! Please, don't drink and derive. Mathematicians Against Drunk Deriving % Math is like love -- a simple idea but it can get complicated. -- R. Drabek % Mathematicians are like Frenchmen: whatever you say to them they translate into their own language and forthwith it is something entirely different. -- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe % Mathematicians often resort to something called Hilbert space, which is described as being n-dimensional. Like modern sex, any number can play. -- Dr. Thor Wald, "Beep/The Quincunx of Time", by James Blish % Mathematicians practice absolute freedom. -- Henry Adams % Mathematics deals exclusively with the relations of concepts to each other without consideration of their relation to experience. -- Albert Einstein % Mathematics is the only science where one never knows what one is talking about nor whether what is said is true. -- Russell % Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth but supreme beauty -- a beauty cold and austere, like that of a sculpture, without appe

Re:Old news (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054304)

tl;dr

Radar (4, Interesting)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053262)

Something that small would be hard to spot with radar, and it does not need to rain down hell fire missiles, a single well places .22 round will neutralize many targets.

Re:Radar (0)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053344)

You're not going to get a well-placed shot from a drone like this. Far too unstable. If it were me, I'd put something like an MP5SD, a M249, an M240 or an M2 on it (depending on size - having not gotten to TFA yet, I don't know which would be best). The last one would probably be best - accurate at long ranges (it was unofficially used as a sniper rifle in WW2), powerful enough to take down small vehicles or light aircraft (including other drones, hint hint), and automatic (so you don't need a stable firing platform). A bit heavy, and recoil's a bitch, but not impossibly so.

Re:Radar (4, Interesting)

olsmeister (1488789) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053446)

A few ounces of high explosive, a detonator circuit, a fragmentable body, and a kamikaze run would probably take care of things nicely.

Re:Radar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053454)

Put a lump of plastic explosive in it and fly it at people's heads.

Re:Radar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053734)

It only weighs a kilogram, so it probably won't carry more than 100g. So which do you think would be appropriate: the MP5SD, the M249, the M240 or the M2?

Seriously, though - that's enough for a teeny-tiny explosive charge, if you don't mind losing the drone in the process.

Re:Radar (4, Informative)

bendodge (998616) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053924)

depending on size - having not gotten to TFA yet

Here's a better article on it with some pictures that show scale (in case you're not on board with the video craze): http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/military-robots/aeryon-scout-quadrotor-spies-on-bad-guys-from-above [ieee.org]
It can easily fit in a small suitcase, so no, you're not going to be mounting firearms on it.

Re:Radar (3, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053950)

You could use it to spot your mortar fire.

Re:Radar (1)

Stone2065 (717387) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054176)

You DID catch the "weights around a kilogram" part, right? Power to weight ratio for the weaponry you're talking about would take a LOT more power than this little thing can generate...

Re:Radar (1, Informative)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054202)

I'll be honest - I didn't read the entire summary, either.

Re:Radar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053594)

It's small, hard to detect and pretty fast. One could simply equip it with something like a spinning blade.
Hmm, sounds somehow familiar...

Re:Radar (2)

SigmaTao (629358) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053750)

I would have thought the next best thing would be to simply lase the target so the big stuff can be delivered accurately on target - without having some poor grunt in the field having to put his head up. Not sure how big a laser you need to do the job - but can't imagine it's very much weight or power. Looks stable enough to keep a beam tracking on a target. A lased target could be the focal point for various armaments, and would effectively allow the drone to be used to take out targets like tanks, armored personnel carriers, rocket launchers, - basically you name it. I guess it might even be able to tag hardened targets for big strikes. I assume someone has put an gps in it so the general location is known. Another, alternative might be to arm it with a florescent paint ball, to you can tag a target at night - so they can be tracked easier.

Re:Radar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053910)

Even a trained sniper would have a really hard time hitting this at a few hundred feet up. Even if he could spot it, which seems unlikely, gun tripods aren't designed to allow you to shoot up in the air. The best rifles only have like 800m range.

Re:Radar (1)

Stone2065 (717387) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054188)

...bud, you really need to step into the 21st century. We are getting reports of confirmed kills at three times that distance...

A .22 or... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36054392)

Or a directed energy weapon (i.e. lazurs, sound waves, microwaves, etc) that would only be limited by its power supply. Good thing significant gains in battery tech are far off and there is no chance this thing would ever be used by an autocratic government. Secret police of 2012 are scarier than those mentioned in the history books.

Cheaper than a predator (4, Insightful)

spauldo (118058) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053268)

OK, so it's cheaper than a predator. It's also completely different than a predator.

It's like saying a golf cart is cheaper than a Freightliner. It's true, but they don't serve the same purpose.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053332)

Yeah. And I want one. (As does pretty much everybody else here).

I wonder how long the batteries last?

Re:Cheaper than a predator (2)

bendodge (998616) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053930)

According to this article [ieee.org] it has a range of 3 km.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053358)

I agree, but look at it from another angle... Since this is /. let's do a car analogy. Many people currently driving a Hummer would be much better served by a Kia Picanto, which costs roughly twenty times less.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (-1, Troll)

19thNervousBreakdown (768619) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053872)

A Hummer is about $40,000, twenty times that is $800,000. $800,000 less than $40,000 is ($760,000), so apparently they'll pay me three quarters of a million dollars to drive a Kia Picanto... my only question is, where do I sign?

Re:Cheaper than a predator (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36054010)

I know feeding the trolls only helps them grow, but twenty times less is synonymous with a factor of 20 less, i.e. dividing by 20. Though where you can find a $2,000 (or even $5,000 if the GP is using a higher end Hummer) new car is beyond me.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (2)

19thNervousBreakdown (768619) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054112)

I'm not trolling, and I know it's common usage, it just sounds dumb.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (5, Funny)

MrQuacker (1938262) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053436)

Sure they do. One moves a fat ass cross-country, the other moves a fat ass cross-country-club.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053502)

HaHaHa!

Re:Cheaper than a predator (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053654)

I concur. Why yes, I am Italian!

Re:Cheaper than a predator (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053948)

Totally wrong. The first "fat ass" would be skinny (because of pep pills) and the other would also be skinny (from cocaine this time).

Re:Cheaper than a predator (1)

spauldo (118058) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053990)

My Freightliner moves a fat ass, but it's leased, so maybe the same rules don't apply.

Re:Cheaper than a predator (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054192)

What I wanna know is, how does it compare to a crazy stalker?

Re:Cheaper than a predator (2)

Nikker (749551) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054296)

It's less accomplished at climbing trees.

This works both ways (1)

Grindalf (1089511) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053270)

This type of statistical image analysis is too easy to do these days. It would be a Synch for the terrorists to construct them. The idea would make a great video game. "Quadrotor Warz!"

Re:This works both ways (2)

bferrell (253291) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053312)

Shades of Dune! can you say hunter/seeker? I knew ya could!

Hand assembled? (1)

angiasaa (758006) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053326)

I'm waiting for them to come up with a self-assembling drone.. Now _that_ ought to make some news!

I've got a name for it (1)

microbee (682094) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053338)

iWing!

Just plug the darn accessory into your iPhone, and throw it into the sky - off you go!

Did I mention it comes with both black and white?

Re:I've got a name for it (4, Funny)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053390)

sigh, can I take a shot at this joke please

Apple announced its partnership with the military today called iWings for iPads

Re:I've got a name for it (1)

Stone2065 (717387) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054222)

If it's any consolation, if I hadn't already posted, I'd have modded you +1 Funny... :)

Oblogatory (0)

$0.02 (618911) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053346)

What can possibly go wrong?

Re:Oblogatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053494)

Agreed.

They need to STOP MAKING THESE.

Re:Oblogatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053666)

Agreed.

They need to STOP MAKING THESE.

HERE HERE. This is one of the biggest threats to humanity, up there with nuclear capability. What happens when a totalitarian government takes control or a terrorist organisation gets hold of a bunch of these?

Next target? (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053410)

This sounds like a hunter-killer. So now we've got Bin Laden does that mean we're going after Paul Maud'Dib next?

Re:Next target? (1)

rossdee (243626) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053610)

That hunter killer was controlled by a Harkonnen agent sealed up in the basement. It did not have an on board computer (computers were outlawed by the Butlerian Jihad)

Aeryon is so 2009.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053414)

There are plenty alternative quad/octo/hexa-rotor projects out there by today.

Human Seekers (1)

Dangerous_Minds (1869682) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053422)

Something wrong with using Mantracker to hunt for people?

Re:Human Seekers (1)

slick7 (1703596) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053998)

Something wrong with using Mantracker to hunt for people?

I am looking for Sarah Conner, I'll be bach.

Half-Life 2 (2)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053462)

I wonder if the Middle-Eastern market for crowbars is a good place to invest.

Um wtf slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053468)

WTF all of slashdot's comments?

1 + 1 = 3, for large values of 1. % 1 Billion

dollars of budget deficit = 1 Gramm-Rudman

6.023 x 10 to the 23rd power alligator pears =

Avocado's number 2 pints = 1 Cavort Basic

unit of Laryngitis = The Hoarsepower

Shortest distance between two jokes = A

straight line 6 Curses = 1 Hexahex 3500

Did anyone else get that dump on the bottom of their page? It was exactly 64,613 bytes.

Re:Um wtf slashdot (1)

Nikker (749551) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054322)

Looks like someone screwed up the EOL chars for the quotes file. It's spitting out the file until it comes to the end of the buffer or memory location (which in some languages would be that length in terms of string variables).

Slahdot broken? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053486)

Sorry tor being offtopic, but did slashdot kind of break for anyone else? I got this [pastebin.ca] as quote at the bottom of the page.

Re:Slahdot broken? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053808)

Looks like we got all the MOTDs at once.

Re:Slahdot broken? (1)

Clandestine_Blaze (1019274) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053852)

Either that or the front page of the Time Cube [timecube.com] site.

"peeping toms" now get high tech... OR... (1)

GReaToaK_2000 (217386) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053496)

Anyone that can afford one can setup a porn site using these things to peer in windows.

Ayreon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053516)

Is a very good band. Listen to "Universal Migrator: The Dream Sequencer" and "Into the Electric Castle". Beautiful music.

what was the subject again?

Very impressive. (2)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053526)

After watching the Youtube video of this device, I got very interested. I would love to give it a whirl, to look around the town etc.

Well done, Canadians. If you have the lack of wisdom to outsource production to China, I might get me one of the cheaper Chinese knock-offs ;) Just kidding.

holy crap (5, Funny)

Jyunga (2040832) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053582)

Two Canadian technology posts on slashdot in two days.... WE ARE THE NEXT CHINA!

Re:holy crap (0)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053882)

Really? You're going to sell us inferior products at low prices, even as stealing the designs for yourself?

Re:holy crap (2)

alienzed (732782) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054018)

and then!

Re:holy crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053968)

Really? You're going to filter the internet and brutally crack down on dissidents?

Re:holy crap (1)

d6 (1944790) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054180)

well, the conservatives _do_ have a majority now. stay tuned.

Flag? (0)

Heshler (1191623) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053586)

What's with the Canada flag on the story? Not only is there not mention of Canada anywhere in the story, it's kind of annoying that whenever there's a tech development in Canada, Slashdot editors seem to assert that the most important feature of this development is that it is Canadian, rather than the cool tech. This is kind of condescending. Don't forget who won the recession.

Re:Flag? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053676)

I'm not your friend, pal.

Yawn! Story from the year before yesteryear (1)

hknust (67528) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053600)

oh, the abuse (5, Interesting)

Thad Zurich (1376269) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053626)

Can you say "Paparazzi"? I knew you could.

Re:oh, the abuse (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054510)

Even better, we can keep an eye on the cops from a distance. Finally we have more tools to fight back against the abuse of wiretap laws. Definitely a good thing.

No Hellfires? Meh! (3, Insightful)

md65536 (670240) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053632)

What's the point of any technology that can't rain down Hellfire missiles?

That's right! None!

Anyone who is developing any technology, from baby food to high-powered anti-personnel ordnance, should ask themselves: "How can we monetize this, and how can we weaponize this?"

Re:No Hellfires? Meh! (1)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053982)

i bet somebody puts a custom scoped rifle or poison dart shooter thingy on it before the year is over...

A dog wrapped in Detcord and ball bearings (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053634)

It can refuel itself and with little more than a dirty sock it can track a target for miles. Best of all you can deploy hundreds of them for less money than a single drone.

It only has to carry a laser to paint a target (5, Insightful)

Marrow (195242) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053638)

The real damage would come from much further away.

Now imagine that is flies in and lands. (4, Interesting)

Marrow (195242) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054612)

Say someone lands it on a rubbish heap or something, Its flat, quiet, drab. Camera is running. They watch a house. The target appears in a doorway for a second. Bing. The signal goes out. The target is painted. A global-hawk-predator-whatever that has been sitting on station for the past month refueling in-flight is tasked. Weapons free. The weapon follows in the laser. Boom.
They could make it smaller with a top mounted camera so it could sit in on a haystack or on top of a barn. With just a fiber-optic camera sticking up. Heck, it could even have a solar panel to keep the camera transmitting for long periods.

Re:Now imagine that is flies in and lands. (1)

Marrow (195242) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054622)

heck, they could drop the thing from a plane.

Assassin droid (1)

twistedemotions (231376) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053652)

When packed with explosives, this sounds like a perfect tool for assassination. Make it cheap, decrease noise, increase range, add some further refinement in stealthily bringing it into a location (composite materials?)....

Already Obsolete (1)

retroworks (652802) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053660)

The Germans were already marketing these in 2007. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4jtguSF0n4 [youtube.com] In fact, Voice of America has already publicly announced (March 2011) that the millitary is using "hummingbird drones" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcXH4iCnck4 [youtube.com] in Afghanistan and Pakistan. If the robot spies the size of a hummingbird are already publicly discussed on Voice of America, I would assume they have tick, mosquito, and chigger drones in actual use by now.

Re:Already Obsolete (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053740)

Nothing out there comes close to this. That bird isnt even in production, it's on a lab bench. There's a big difference between marketing and something that works!

Super (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053724)

Killing got cheaper. What a great achievement.

Won't it be great... (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053820)

...in thirty years, when the technology is so commonplace that every terrorist, assassin, etc. can get one.

Re:Won't it be great... (2)

chuckugly (2030942) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053958)

Anyone with a few hundred bucks can get one NOW. Welcome to the future, enjoy your stay.

Finally! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053874)

A lack of ways to kill without guilt has been a big problem for this country. Glad to see progress on this. Wait until these get deployed by police in the US.

Re:Finally! (2)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054524)

On the contrary.. It will make it easier to watch the police from a safe place and keep the bastards honest.. A highly directional mic will help even more.. I'm all for it.

And much more limited than an MQ-1 (1)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 3 years ago | (#36053884)

MQ-1 Predator can cruise at 80-100 mph, 2000 mile range, 24 hour endurance at 25,000 feet, satellite uplink, SAR, IR/UV/Visible light cameras.

So yea, its going to cost more, it can do alot more.

Re:And much more limited than an MQ-1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053994)

Can't put a predator in yer backpack though.

each citizen gets personal droid equipped drone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36053992)

as if the .5 million dollar per citizen fake terror tolerance stipend isn't enough? with the 3X6 airtight personal citizen bunker attachment, most of us should be able to ride our way out of the storm systems. mynutswon;on to babylon.

disarm, as if it were almost all we really need to do about the 'weather' problems.

Wait for an upgrade... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36054210)

I am going to hold out for a model where the landing struts are replace with multi-functional
robotic tentacles... then it will have some real use as a fun toy :D

What's with the flag? (1)

Dzimas (547818) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054280)

Out of interest, why does this story have a Canadian flag icon on the front page? It's true the company's Canadian, but other tech stories aren't flagged (heh) by their country of origin -- I don't see the Stars & Stripes gracing every piece about Apple or Oracle.

Skynet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36054328)

One step closer to Judgement Day!!!

Now.... (1)

meglon (1001833) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054454)

.... if we could get it to take a crap on their heads, we could revel in the fact we've mechanically reproduced the pigeon.

Too many drones, not enough eyeballs. (0)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054456)

The problem I understand nowadays is not that we (the U.S.) don't have enough drones (even though the predator costs millions) but that we don't have enough flight crews to operate them. I understand they require the equivalent of a fighter pilot and navigator/"gunner" and while the armed forces are training them as fast as they can there still aren't enough.

So why not "outsource" (from the military not from the U.S.) these less lethal but presumably easier to fly drones?

Have a reality show where any U.S. citizen is permitted to try flying one of these things. A decent home computer with a broadband connection should suffice. At the basic level, groups of these beginner flyers will be supervised (moderated) by a flight instructor (moderator). Fly enough hours and you get to fly solo and then become a moderator yourself. Gain enough hours successfully "moderating" flight groups without too many crashes and you'll be allowed to try being a navigator/gunner (again being moderated). Rinse, repeat.

Do this, with improving more capable drones until you are flying predators with hellfires!

If you could thow in a little pay, it might help reduce the 9 percent unemployment. And it would provide the U.S. with one hell of a reserve force in the event of a major war!

Re:Too many drones, not enough eyeballs. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054586)

It would make sense to kick out another game in the spirit of Full Spectrum Warrior, let alone America's Army or Future Force Company Commander.

3oz RDX EFP would make it a flying grenade (1)

assemblerex (1275164) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054512)

Seriously, all you need is a tiny charge and fly it over the person. If people think this won't be weaponized they are fooling themselves.

Flight duration (2)

Mike610544 (578872) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054530)

From the Aeyron website "Operational duration: up to 25 minutes."

In practice it's probably a lot less than that.

I'm not sure that their scenario of detecting a dork dressed up like a spy stealing my Hyundai has me sold on the concept.

Lots of comments on using this as a weapon, yet... (1)

Tynin (634655) | more than 3 years ago | (#36054726)

It seems like a sweet way to get "public" pictures if you were in the paparazzi / picture media biz. People are talking about loading it down a load of weapons, but I say, just load it up with extra batteries to get more flight time, and a good camera, and I imagine you'd do quite well following (or doing recon on) anyone.
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