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Hi all –

What a week – more tragedy and not nearly enough to laugh about.

Congress has gone home after passing FESSA and presenting H.R. 636 to the President on July 14, a whole day before the FAA ran out of money. Not even time for a photo op and a pen.

Drones And Wildfire – It’s Not About Bambi is more than a think piece, it’s a heart piece. It’s about how important our forests are in the West and how much is risked to protect them. It looks at a new bill out of Utah which allows firefighters to ground drones using technology to disable them. No word about the details, but I would be happy to help market it. And why AirMap and DJI’s newest wildfire geo-fencing innovation is a solution to what should be a non-problem.

The Real Danger Of The Drone Over Your Head deconstructs a dissertation by Andrew Shelley, who is an Accredited Safety Auditor and Member of the New Zealand Safety Council and works with Aviation Safety Management Systems Ltd. Entitled A Model Of Human Harm from a Falling Unmanned Aircraft: Implications for UAS Regulation, the paper systematically explores many of the variables that should be considered in assessing the risk of letting drones operate over people.

This is a far more thoughtful discussion than anything we have been offered with the Micro UAS ARC. The inescapable conclusion is that in their haste the FAA and/or the committee either seriously miscalculated or are woefully understating the risks involved.

The Real DJI Miracle explores how China is making the transition from a country that makes things that other countries have dreamed up, to a country that makes things based on it’s own original ideas. DJI is a poster child for that transition. The only thing I don’t get is why Frank Wang feels the need to constantly knock Steve Jobs. C’mon man.

Props To Identified Technologies – A “Brilliant 100” Company is about a drone start-up in Pittsburgh that is making serious inroads in the construction industry with a highly integrated, autonomous solution. I’ve added commentary from McKinsey and Colin Snow to put the opportunity in context – it is huge.

Talking about a big vision, Swarms In Sight is an interview with Alexander Harmsen whose company Iris Automation is a leader in computer vision technology.

Airbus Demos A Stunning UAV Use Case is a report from Farnborough Air Show which winds up this weekend in the UK. There is a short, absolutely dazzling video that shows how drone photography can be integrated with a 3D model to facilitate aircraft inspection.

“I have a PPL and a 333. Do I need to take the 107 test?” is from a post by Stephen Mann, a retired airline pilot who has the drone bug and has been very active on many forums. It is far and away the clearest and most concise article on the topic that I have read.

Last weeks Tesla story continues to gather steam with news that the SEC is considering looking into the $2B stock sale. Musk and Tesla appear to be standing their ground. But of course they are hardly the only company developing autonomous vehicles.

For a refreshing change of pace Mercedes-Benz Envisions Autonomy is a first-hand report from noted analyst Brian Solis. I’ve also included a few words about a much more modest approach, the Nissan ProPilot. The minivan debuted this week and will go on sale in Japan later this year.

I am happy to offer up two Eye Candy Tag Award winners.

“What if everyone had a personal drone?” Is a whimsical cartoon from The Economist’s resident cartoonist. Unexpected source perhaps, but still charming.

Drones Take Star Trek And Rihanna Beyond is the music video/theme song for the new feature film, Star Trek Beyond sung by Rihanna who channels an other-worldly sauvage. It is an impressive example of the kinds of imagery that can only be shot with a drone. The word “trippy” comes to mind.

Thanks for reading and for sharing.


Christopher Korody
Follow me @dronewriter

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