Drones Banned From Flying While Obama Visits London

People love drones, from their ability to race around the skies to capturing the most picture perfect moments you just don’t feel safe taking yourself. Sadly if you were looking at grabbing a quick picture of President Obama during his visit to London in a couple of week’s you will have to shelve your drone thanks to plans to ban drones from flying around London during the president’s visit.

The bulletin was released by the National Air Traffic Service (NATS) and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and will restrict all types of aircraft on Thursday, April 21st (The Queens birthday) and Sunday, April 24th. The restrictions will be in place on all aircraft, including drones like the one that crashed at the muses content, banning any craft from flying below 762 metres (2,500 feet).

The restrictions are in place over three separate areas, with each area having specific times and dates, with the most restrictive being in Area 2 who find a lack of air traffic all the way from 8PM on the 21st till 9.30AM on the 24th.

With this becoming a common measure for high-profile events, you should be weary of flying your drones when big events are happening as you can often end up with large fines and a ban on using any type of drone.

The Volocopter Completes Its First Manned Flight

Who doesn’t love a drone? From being used as video recorders and photography tools to their use in creating a whole new form of racing, they’ve come a long way from fantasy tools for soldiers and spies. E-Volo is just one of many one of many groups that want to change what drones can do, in this case, they want to let YOU ride within a many-rotor electric helicopter; as a super drone.

The Volocopter VC200 received its flight permit in Germany, meaning that managing director of E-Volo, Alexander Zosel could take to the sky in the 18 rotor helicopter. In what seems to be a smooth and seamless take off the flight goes just as well with the Volocopter gliding around the field and was even described as responding instantly to the actions put into it.

During interviews after the flight, the companies reactions were positive, with them showing that the Volocopter could be considered as an alternative to cars with everyone being able to own their own which, with the use of a touch pad, would be able to self-drive itself to your favourite location. Why have a flying car when you can have a personal helicopter?

The Waterfront – Panasonics 4K Seat For Airplanes

Going to take a long flight in the near future? You may want to hope that Panasonic is the ones providing you with the in-flight entertainment though after they revealed the Waterfront, a 4k experience to keep you happy on the plane.

Concealed within a private seating area, not only are you welcomed to your own private refuge but the technologies there to make your flight as enjoyable as being at home. The lighting around your area is controlled by an app you can place on your phone, giving you control over the lighting in the front pocket and water bottle independently.

If that wasn’t enough from the app then you can take full control of the 24-inch 4K TV that sits in front of you for the duration of the flight. With video and music playback, with all the sound provided through a set of headphones placed neatly beside your head, the app can only be used to control your adjustable seats and a “do not disturb” function (complete with wake up time alert for the cabin crew) , the app continues to give you options when you’re enjoying your flight.

With a wireless charging area for your phone, power ports, and an HDMI input to let you play your own movies, you can even video chat with the built-in camera. Once you’ve got everything to your liking, you can save the settings and keep them for your next flight, the app even gives you a notification about where to pick up your bags. While it’s not set for release till 2019, you could soon enjoy the freedom and comfort of a 4K screen on your long distance flights.

Airline Passengers Phone Catches Fire Mid-Flight

If you are reading this on your phone you may want to put it down on the table and read it from afar. Phones are known for having the odd quirk of behaviour here and there but when it comes to catching fire, that’s probably their scariest behaviour. Sadly one person found this out the hard way when her phone caught fire mid-flight.

Anna Crail is a college sophomore who was on an Alaska Air flight to enjoy her spring break. To pass the time on the plane she decided to watch a film on her iPhone 6, a move which seemed to cause trouble when it started to shoot flames.

Talking to KOMO-TV Anna described the events:

“All of the sudden there was like 8-inch flames coming out of my phone, and I flipped it off onto the ground and it got under someone’s seat, and the flames were just getting higher and a bunch of people stood up”

An Alaska Air spokesman told ABC news that the fire was “quickly extinguished” and that there was no injuries or damage to the plane which continued on its way.

Both Alaska Air and the FAA are looking into the incident alongside Apple who have said they are getting in touch with the family and the airline regarding the matter.

World’s Largest Aircraft Set For UK Test Flight

Every few years we hear about something being bigger, faster, crazier, and the Airlander 10 is no exception to this. Clocking into the world of aviation as the world’s largest aircraft, the Airlander 10 is preparing to take its first test flight in the UK in just a few weeks time.

It’s no normal craft either. It generates its lift aerostatically since it’s filled with Helium, but also aerodynamically thanks to its wing-like shape. It’s a hybrid of a lot of technologies overall, blending plane, helicopter and airship into one and that all plays no small part in allowing it to be as big as it is.

Created by Hybrid Air Vehicles in Bedford, UK, the Airlander 10 is expected to be deployed for use in leisure cruises, airborne research and cargo transport due to its less demanding landing and take-off abilities. It’s capable of carrying up to 10-tons, or fitted to carry 48 passengers for a very impressive five days at a cruising speed of around 80 Knots (92mph); there’s also a 50-ton version in the planning stages.

“It’s not an airship. It’s a mix between an aeroplane, an airship with a bit of helicopter thrown in. It uses the latest materials, it’s got the latest fly-by-night technology, avionics and computer software. It’s very much an aircraft for the 21st century.” said company spokesman Chris Daniels.

Obviously, it remains to be tested and it’s questionable how much demand there will be for such a craft, but that doesn’t make it any less cool. Would you take a trip on an air-cruise aboard something like this, or do you prefer the speedy alternative of a jet to fly you to your next holiday destination?

“We are not talking about a mass market products here. We’re talking about something highly specialist. It will be very useful for those who need it. But the number of companies and organizations that are going to need something as specialist as this is not large in number.” added Aviation Expert David Learmount.

Loon Copter – The Drone That Can Travel Underwater

2016 looks to be a big year for technology, with everything from hoverboards and drones making world news for all the reasons possible. Drones recently caught a lot of attention when the Federal Aviation Administration started a system that requires drone users to register. While most drones fly above the ground, doing everything from taking videos to delivering your shopping, it was only a matter of time until someone decided that the air shouldn’t be the only place that drones travel. Say hello to the Loon Copter!

Oakland University started the project in 2014, designing and creating a drone that did more than just fly. The Loon Copter is designed to travel not just above the ground but also in and even under water. After flipping 90 degrees, the drone uses the same blades that it uses for flying to then propel itself underwater. The drone can then resurface and fly again without any difficulty.

With a drone capable of doing all this, search and rescue could use them at sea (on calm days at least) to check for people both above and beneath the water without having to change out the equipment.

The first issue they will face though is getting a wireless stream of video from the drone while it’s underwater, something that normally requires a cable connecting the drone to its controller.

Selected as one of ten semi-finalists for the internal category at the 2016 Drones for Good Competition, what would you use an underwater drone for? Would you like to see a giant one that you can ride in?

New Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo set for February 2016 Reveal

Eager to take a trip to space within your lifetime? So long as you’ve got the money for it, the Virgin Galactic team are still working hard to bring commercial space flight to the (well-paying) masses and after the tragic accident in 2014 which killed one pilot and hospitalised another, the team appear to be making progress working on the latest version of SpaceShipTwo; their revolutionary new space plane.

“I think we are in a much better place than we might have expected in the period immediately after the accident, and that’s because our team came together, our customers stuck with us, and honestly we believe that the vehicle itself is sound.” Virgin Galactic chief executive George Whitesides said in an interview.

The new plane is set to be revealed in February 2016, with test flights set to begin shortly afterwards. This is interesting, given that Branson has been criticised in the past for being too aggressive with the planning of Virgin Galactic, perhaps even rushing things. However, with enough money and a big enough team, the gamble is starting to pay off and with people 700 already having tickets booked for many of the first flights, it’s going to be interesting to see just how long it is before the first paying customers take off.

There’s clearly still a lot of work to do, and prices are obviously going to be expensive for the flights, but would you take a trip with Virgin Galactic if you could? Let us know in the comments section below.

 

Judge Supports Man Who Shot Down Drone

Drones are a hot topic, with both laws and companies trying to catch up on an evolving and increasingly more accessible market for the public. Back in August we posted about William Meredith, a resident in the USA, who after spotting a drone flying above his property, was prompted to shoot it down.

Meredith cited his right to privacy, stating that the drone was flying above his property on an afternoon while his daughters were in the back garden playing. It would appear that the Judge, deciding on Monday that the drone did, in fact, invade his privacy, giving him a right to shoot it. The judge made this decision given the two witnesses who testified that the UAV flew below the tree line of Meredith’s property.

The drone pilot and owner, David Boggs, is less than happy with this decision, stating that the Judge completely ignored video footage of the drone flying 200 feet above the ground. Aside from this drama Meredith states that his neighbours saw the drone making several flights over his land, explaining that the video could have come from a different flight and cannot be used to prove that it was the only flight or that all of them took the same pattern.

With the law trying to catch up with technology, instances like this may soon refer to this case a president for what to do when people take action to prevent drones on their property. We do not recommend though that you start using anti-drone weaponry on anything that flies near your house.

Redditer Discovered Hidden Feature in iOS 9 and Mac OS X El Capitan

We got a lot of information out of what to expect from iOS 9 and El Capitan this fall at Apple’s WWDC in June. Even so, developers are said to be good at discovering Apple’s ‘hidden’ new features, but this time around, it seems that one of them, who I think is actually useful, was actually discovered by someone else.

A redditer going by the name of homeboi808 seems to have stumbled upon a feature who went on unnoticed so far. On both iOS 9 and El Capitan, if you tap on a flight number in either the Mail, Messages or Notes app, the OS’ will work the flight out and give you a flight path overview, along with all information about that flight. This includes arrival, departure times, possible delays and even airport terminal details.

It seems that Apple has added a built-in feature that detects and reacts to gestures when it finds a flight number. However, that needs to adhere to the actual flight number style, so don’t expect it to do the same with just anything you type in. Even so, the flight number needs to be valid in order to get information about it.

Even so, the feature is really helpful when you’re expecting to pick someone up from the airport or are planning a journey. Getting up-to-date information about your flights is a must from my point of view. What do you think?

Thank you BGR for providing us with this information

Mad Catz Team up with Star Citizen for New Space Simulation Hardware

Mad Catz and their Saitek brand have reached out into new realms as of late and we’ve seen several interesting new things, ranging from music instruments for the new Rock Band game as well as exclusive farming simulation hardware geared towards, yes you guess it, Farm Simulator. That wasn’t enough for them and they’ve now announced dedicated Star Citizen Space Simulation Hardware. We have not yet been shown what that will look like, but I’m sure that it will get one or the other fan excited.

Mad Catz teamed up with Cloud Imperium Games to create a range of officially licensed simulation products for Star Citizen and its groundbreaking science fiction universe. The new range of hardware is expected to ship in 2016 and will be released under the Company’s Saitek simulation brand.

The game combines FPS combat with persistent MMO gameplay to create an amazing universe with almost unlimited gameplay experiences. Such a game also deserves some proper hardware and while Mad Catz already worked closely with the company that used the Saitek X52 in multiple videos and also made it perfectly compatible with the game. While the X52, and also X55 H.O.T.A.S. sticks are great, they are more aimed at earth-based simulation games.

It will be very interesting to see what the two companies come up with. The official web page already has a section for space simulation, but so far it only contains products from the current lineup.

‘Concord 2’ Hypersonic Airbus Being Developed!

Airbus are known for their giant airplanes, and it’s not hard to know why, as they’re used all over the world to transport people and materials. Their new design hopes to improve on that by allowing them to travel at speeds of up to four and a half times the speed of sound!

To summarise this, travelling to New York from London currently takes seven to eight hours, with the new airbus design the flight would take a single hour. Flights from Paris to San Fransico and Tokyo to Los Angeles would take a mere three hours, saving people and companies time which they often don’t have lying around (or sitting) in the air.

The airplane will be a little different from your normal flight. designed to take off vertically thanks to some engines mounted underneath the jet is designed to climb vertically until it’s almost at the speed of sound. After this, it relies on rocket motors to carry it up to 100,000 feet before finally allowing the ramjets to push it to a final speed of Mach 4.5.

The design is similar to a lot of high-speed military jets, and even has some resemblance to the concord, a jet which was not allowed to operate over land due to the worry that it would cause a sonic boom. The new crafts design is built to limit not only the noise it creates but also the sonic booms, thereby hoping to allow it to travel in more populated areas without the restrictions set on the concord.

With only twenty seats on each jet, the chances are the tickets will be highly priced and the onboard entertainment short. Who wants a meal with their flight anyway?

Thank you Tech Sport for the information and the image. 

Largest Plane on Earth Will Be Airborne as Early as Next Year

Meet Stratolaunch, the largest plane on Earth! Codenamed the “Roc” after the mythical bird of prey, this ‘beast’ looks to be a true king of the sky. In terms of size, it is said to be 65 feet wider than the “Spruce Goose” H-4 Hercules and 95 feet wider than the spaceship-carrying Soviet Antonov An-225, so you can imagine how small you may feel when next to it.

In addition to the size, the “Roc” boasts six Pratt & Whitney jet engines, 28 landing gear wheels and a 385 foot wingspan. But the plane was not made to enter the Guinness record book. Microsoft’s co-founderm Paul Allan, is the guy behind the project and he aims to make the “Roc” the next big alternative to launching rockets into space.

The plane is able to hold a three-stage rocket between its fuselages, as shown in the picture above, which can then be launched at extremely high altitude and detatch its payload into space. So why is this helpful? Well, think about weather conditions. Having to launch a satellite from the edge of Earth’s atmosphere takes away a lot of unwanted variables, so it makes it easier and somewhat safer to launch from up above the clouds.

This is why Stratolaunch was designed so big and massive, weighing in at 1.3 million pounds (including the rocket). But will it do what is expected of it? We won’t know until they do the test runs, which are said to begin as early as next year. If they prove to be a success, Stratolaunch’s first mission is said to be planned for 2018. Until then, here’s a simulation of how the plane and rocket launch should take place. Enjoy!

Thank you Yahoo! for providing us with this information

Behind the Scenes of World of Warcraft Movie in Virtual Reality

The bigger a project is, the tougher it is to keep the details a secret. Some manage to do so and one of the most prominent examples is probably Lord of the Rings. But the same thing also goes for the Warcraft movie directed by Duncan Jones. We know that it is in the making and that it is scheduled for a June 10th 2016 global release in 3D, but that is about it.

Now we’ve finally got a little inside view into the new movie, although it isn’t actual movie footage. Legendary Pictures released a little teaser in the Legendary VR app that is available on both iTunes and Google Play (465MB). Warcraft: Skies of Azeroth is one of three VR experiences that throws you on the back of a virtual gryphon for a flight over the city of Stormwind.

As Duncan Jones notes, it is part of the movie’s worldbuilding and it is certainly the first opportunity for anyone to see what Stormwind looks like.

“The city is laid out the same way it is in the movie,” Jones says. “We spend a little bit of time in the movie in Stormwind and in the VR experience you’ll actually get a chance to get a good look at everything.”

The launch of this demo is timed well with Comic-Con in San Diego where Google is giving away 50 thousand Google Cardboard units to give you a better experience. The other two VR experiences Legendary released are Beware Crimson Peak, a VR trip into the creepy residence in Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming Crimson Peak, and Pacific Rim: Jaeger Pilot, which puts you inside a kaiju-fighting mech.

Mad Catz Partners for Retail Microsoft Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition

Mad Catz has signed a deal with Dovetail Games for the exclusive retail distribution of Microsoft’s Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition. Mad Catz will distribute the boxed version of the game in America, Russia and the Asia Pacific area under its Saitek brand, and you get a nice coupon bonus along with the purchase.

“Our Saitek brand has long been recognized as the leader in simulation technology, and distributing FSX: Steam Edition allows consumers a one-stop-shop for their flight simulation software and hardware needs,” said Darren Richardson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mad Catz. “Whether you’re an experienced pilot or just want to fly, FSX: Steam Edition provides a great experience.”

Microsoft Flight Simulator X is probably one of the best flight simulators for enthusiast all around with support for almost any kind of extra hardware. With the Steam Edition you get the updated game with better Windows 7 and 8 support, the Accelerated Expansions pack and the deluxe version of the base game.

But the real kick is that Saitek includes a 15% discount code for your first flight simulation equipment. The Saitek First Flight Bundle includes the Pro Flight Yoke, Throttle, and Rudder Pedals – the basic setup that any real pilot will need.

Microsoft Flight Simulator X features

  • 24 Precisely-Rendered Aircraft-Pilot everything from single-prop planes to helicopters, fighter jets, and ultralights
  • Over 80 Engaging Missions-Test your flight sim skills as you visit 24,000 of the world’s airports
  • Thrilling Air Races-Fly solo offline or compete against online rivals for intense multiplayer action
  • Explore the World of Aviation-Experience realistic flight conditions including weather effects, seasonal changes, and time of day
  • Easy to Learn-Gameplay tutorial gets you airborne quickly, empowering you to track and improve your skills

The new retail version will be released on June 16th and it can already be pre-ordered for $19.99.

Space Travel By Sailing? Ahoy!

Space travel has long since been a thing of dreams, science fiction fans have long enjoyed the notion that one day our race would spread out into the stars and claim other planets as homes. First though we will need to reach the planets in question, but that may be one step closer today.

In recent weeks, NASA has been posting their findings on an EM drive, a concept that has long been considered impossible. By bouncing microwaves around a chamber, an EM drive would be able to create thrust from just electrical energy, removing the need for any fuel. This, however, is considered impossible by many because it violates the conservation of momentum, what is considered a fundamental law of the universe. With positive results seen so far we could be one step closer to a future among the stars.

Bill Nye is known for his famous insight into the world of physics, today he is taking a step towards another form of interstellar travel. Almost 40 years ago Carl sagan began to explain a new form of space travel, the concept using radiation from a star to help propel a vessel in a fashion comparable to using a sailboat on the sea.

The Solar sail project, founded by Carl Sagan, is currently headed by Bill Nye, and aims to explore the potential of using this method of transport instead of modern day rockets with fuel and chemicals powering their engines. The result of this is two small craft, built by Stellar Exploration Inc, the first of which is set to launch on the 20th of May. A full timeline of which can be seen here, on the planetary.org website. The first test flight aims to test the craft’s ability to deploy the four sails from a central cube, that will hold the arms and initially contain the sheets used for the sails. With the craft only capable of space travel, it requires an initial boost to leave the atmosphere, traditionally attached to a rocket before being detached and released into space when it has left Earth’s gravitational pull.

With space flight becoming a larger part of research and development, and with more of these showing promise such as the EM drive, only time is what separates us from space travel and the stars.

Thank you to CNet, Planetary.org and The Verge for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of ISSS.

CyPhy Set to Take the Air by Storm

Drones, we all want one. We might never actually use it for the intended use, but just to have it sat there for that one-time event where you need to go on a spy mission or look for that frisbee that landed on the roof; it just makes sense.

In recent years, the private drone sector has boomed and with it, companies are coming out of the woodwork to join in the fun and games; in this case it is CyPhy joining the fun. CyPhy is a small commercial drone company that builds very small amounts of drones. They have now set up a Kickstater fund page to get backing and start-up money from anyone interested in their new drone tech.

The CyPhy LVL 1 is a unique drone that has slightly inverted blades which enable silky smooth flight and incredible control, but don’t take my word for it; watch the video.

Some of the key features I love about the concept of this drone if the smartphone control interface and Geo-Fencing. Smartphone control is self-explanatory, but the Geo-Fencing I like the sound of; I could set the boundaries and let my daughter go nuts with the knowledge that she isn’t going to hit a tree or a house.

I love the sound of this drone and will be keeping an eye on it, under $500 is seriously tempting. Are you a drone fan? Do you own a drone? Let us know in the comments.

3D Robotics Launch DroneKit Open Source API for App Development

It looks like 3D Robotics have launched the DroneKit API for drone app development as a free open source software. The API can be used to develop apps for drones or onboard drone software, having it be completely flexible and multi-platform oriented.

“Unlike other APIs for drones, there are no levels of access to DroneKit; it’s completely flexible and open,” said Brandon Basso, VP of software engineering for 3DR. “The platform works on laptops as well as mobile devices. Best of all, once an app is created, the app automatically works on any computing platform – the interface is always the same.”

The company is said to have released the API to the community so that people interested in drones are able to customise how they use them in the field. The DroneKit API is said to allow you to set waypoint flight paths, follow GPS targets, while also allowing the developer to view playbacks and log analysis of flights.

The above mentioned features are just an example of what the API brings to developers, having it come with a variety of feature which were previously unavailable to drone enthusiasts.

Thank you TweakTown for providing us with this information

Meet the Drone-Based Hoverbike That Could Revolutionise Travel

We all know how easy to use drones are. Many of us have taken to the skies with a drone, performing tricky stunts and captured amazing video footage, but what if we could ride one of those drones?

Well, this project, the ‘Hoverbike’, is said to be exactly that. It utilises drone-like technology to make manned-flying easy and even cheap. Its creators say that pretty much anyone can get the experience of flying a helicopter at a significantly lower price and with significantly less training using the Hoverbike. The most exciting thing however, is that all of this is apparently just around the corner.

The developers of the bike have had a successful Kickstarter campaign, drawing more than double the money they requested. They did this through selling scaled drone prototypes that backers could receive to see the Hoverbike technology in action.

You can see those prototypes and more in the video below.

Source: Speed Society

First Accurate Model of ‘Christ the Redeemer’ Mapped by Drone

The Christ the Redeemer statue in Brazil is one of the most famous in the world. Since 1931, the statue has stood tall over the Rio de Janeiro skyline, becoming one of the most recognisable landmarks ever. However, while many statues have many accurate replicas and models of themselves, no-one has never been able to sufficiently analyse Christ the Redeemer to make such a model. Its precarious position on top of Corcovado Mountain has made it very difficult to get up close and personal with it.

But now, thanks to drones, we do have the first model. Across 19 10-minute flights, drones made by Canadian company Aeryon accurately mapped every inch of the famous statue. 2,090 individual images were stitched together producing a wireframe mesh of 2.5 million triangles.

The video below shows you the process leading to the finished product. It’s an incredible feat made possible only by drones.

Source: The Verge

Flying Cars to be “Commercially Available” in 2016?

Terrafugia, a company based in Boston in the United States, says that it will offer the first “commercially available” flying car in 2016.

The ‘Transition’, as it’s called, will allow those who hold pilot licenses to fly their aircraft as well as drive it on the roads too. It is officially street legal – the first flying craft to receive such certification. The craft runs on standard unleaded fuel and is supposed to be incredibly easy to fly.

However, you might be questioning this and wondering, is this really the flying car we’ve always envisioned? Well, you do need a pilot’s license for it and it costs $279,000, making it inaccessible to many. Terrafugia thinks it has the answer to this though.

They say that the ‘Transition’ is just the beginning and that in 10 years, they will be able to offer the TF-X – a craft that is completely driverless, allowing literally anyone to step onboard and fly to wherever they want to go at speeds of up to 200mph. They say that the cost issue will be solved too – the vehicles will offered perhaps in a similar way to a taxi or Uber for example, where you can pay a fare just for the journey you wish to take.

While all of this is incredibly exciting, we’ll have to see it to believe it first.

Source: BBC News

Virtual Reality Headsets Being Offered to Airline Passengers

Long haul flights can be exhausting, being stick in a pressurized cabin with no escape other than a small TV screen, a peek out the window or the blindfold to help you sleep. At least that much was true until now, as first-class passengers flying between Australia and the US will be getting treated to Samsung Gear VR headsets by Qantas during their flight.

“Whether the user wants a virtual tour of our new Los Angeles First Lounge or to experience an A380 landing from the tarmac, this technology gives us a completely new way to connect with our customers,” said Qantas group executive Olivia Wirth. “It’s also a fantastic tool to feature our network’s destinations, inspiring travel and promoting tourism.” she added.

Qantas are saying they’ll have a few other cool experiences on the headset, while it’s also likely that we’ll find movies and other entertainment, such as games, being added to the device.

The trial will last for three months on certain flights between Australia and Los Angeles, beginning in March this year.

Thank you BBC for providing us with this information.

DJI to Disable Drones Over Washington, DC After Incident

DJI will disable its drones over Washington, DC after an earlier incident which involved one of its Phantom drones crashing on the White House lawn.

The Chinese company told The Wall Street Journal that they will be using their GPS tracking system to remotely disable their drones from flying in the city. The company says that they have already utilised this capability to prevent flight near airports, but this will be the first time they have used it in a city. According to The Verge, the FAA already has a restriction on flight in the Washington, DC area, so such a restriction could have been implemented regardless of the recent incident.

It was on Monday that a DJI Phantom drone crashed on the lawn of the White House, an incident that was traced back to a (former?) government official who was flying the drone for “recreational purposes” at 3am (we’re as confused as you are).

Source: The Verge

Watch: Desperate Guy Jumps Into Freezing Water to Save Drone

Drones are expensive, but at the same time they’re things we send dangerously whizzing through the air. This guy learned those things the hard way, when he decided it would be a good idea to jump into a freezing canal to save his drone.

There’s little else to say about this, but just watch the video bellow. It’s hilarious.

Source: Sploid

How to Make Your Own Racing Drone

Popular tech-centric YouTube channel ‘Tested’ has produced a handy guide to producing your own racing drone.

Racing quadcopters have been the subject of a number of enthralling YouTube videos, showing packs of drones whizzing past trees at ridiculous speeds with inches to spare. Just take a look at this one:

Now take a look at the tutorial to learn how to make your own:

Source: Gizmodo

First Drone Launched From FAA Test Site Crashes

The first drone to be launched from the FAA’s test facility in Nevada crashed almost immediately. The facility is intended to test drones for their entry into commercial use.

The Magpie UAV did eventually get certification, but the first public demonstration flight of the aircraft crashed with all to see, including the Governor of Nevada himself.

The Nevada Institute for Autonomous Systems has been set up to provide certification to commercial drone operators. It is currently illegal in the US to fly drones for commercial purposes, so this facility has been set up to ensure drone’s airworthiness before they go into service.

I’m pretty sure this demonstration made the facility seem worthwhile.

Source: Gizmodo

Need to Land a Plane? There’s an iPad App for That

Xavion, an iPad app used by pilots to plan flight paths, is due to receive an update that will allow it to land a plane without its pilot.

The app is designed for pilots of small aircraft and has traditionally given them data to help them on their way. Xavion can provide detailed weather updates so pilots can avoid turbulence for example. But this new update, due to arrive early next year, will do something no app update has done before. The update promises to be able to bring an aircraft to a point just before landing, so even the least experienced pilot can land an aircraft and “walk away”. By subscribing for $199 a year, the app can help guide a plane in to landing in the case of an engine failure, lack of fuel or even if the pilot is incapacitated.

“In practice, pilots would use this app to guide them down to just before the threshold of the runway,” Meyer says. “At that point, any pilot can take over and land the airplane. Our tests today took us practically all the way down to touchdown. If the pilot didn’t take over, he would have just had a hard landing, broken the landing gear, and everyone would have walked away.” – The Creator of the app Austin Meyer speaking to Popular Science.

Check out the video at the source link to see the app in action.

Source: Popular Science Via: The Verge

Delta URL Trick Allowed You To Use Someone Else’s Boarding Pass

A incredibly simple URL trick allowed anyone in possession of a Delta airlines online boarding pass to get hold of someone else’s pass. All the holder had to do was change a single number in the pass’ URL to get the pass of another passenger.

The trick was discovered by a journalist who accidentally changed a digit in the URL of their boarding pass. This ‘vulnerability’ meant that literally anyone could have got hold of your Delta boarding pass, with ultimately no hacking required.

In a statement to Gizmodo, Delta have since apologised and patched up the issue.

“After a possible issue with our mobile boarding passes was discovered late Monday, our IT teams quickly put a solution in place this morning to prevent it from occurring,” Delta spokesperson Paul Skrbec said. “As our overall investigation of this issue continues, there has been no impact to flight safety, and at this time we are not aware of any compromised customer accounts.” The airline added, “We apologize for any concern this may have caused.”

Source: Gizmodo