Most of us have become accustomed to the amazing imagery of the world available on Google’s Street View, but a new site promises the same kind of virtual tourism from the aerial perspective of drones Launched back in April by Switzerland-based Jan Hiersemenzel, TravelByDrone is a site that harnesses the power of YouTube and Google Maps to allow you to explore the planet via recorded drone footage
See also: Fly Virtually Using This Drone and Oculus Rift Combination
An interactive Google Map of the world features pins displaying logos that indicate that drone footage is available. By clicking on one of the pins, you’re immediately shown YouTube footage of the geographic area shot by a flying drone. You can search for specific cities and even select footage based on timeliness, as the site’s orange pins indicate drone footage shot in recent months Read more..
Image: GoalControlThere’s been no short supply of controversy around this year’s World Cup, and now the actual tournament has kicked off—and after that rather iffy penalty awarded to Brazil in their first match against Croatia last night—we can expect to see some on the pitch too.But this year at least, there shouldn’t be any dispute over one pretty vital point of the game: whether the ball is in the goal or not. With so few goals scored in a match, you might think it wouldn’t be too hard to notice when it actually does happen, but recent history would prove you wrong. Just go back to the 2010 World Cup and poor Frank Lampard’s woefully uncounted non-goal goal. The England player clearly kicked the ball over the goal-line—which is, after all, the one thing he and his pals are paid millions to do—but somehow the referee didn’t see it
A US MQ-9 Reaper takes off from Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan. Image: US Department of DefenseIf you thought the US was ramping down its lethal drone war in Pakistan, think again. Until this week, the skies over Pakistan had been quieter than usual. Noticeably absent? The buzz of US hunter-killer drones. Indeed, there wasn’t a single American drone strike logged in Pakistan since December 25, 2013, according to The Long War Journal
Image: Carnegie Melon UniversityLast month we learned that the military is developing a pilotless version of its iconic Black Hawk helicopter. Now we have some idea of how the new drone will be used.For the next 18 months, a group of researchers will work to program the autonomous Black Hawk to deliver a driverless vehicle through the sky and lower it down on the ground where it will autonomously survey the land.The car-toting robocopter will carry the all-terrain vehicle in a belly sling, scope out the best place to land, and then set the self-driving, sensing car free to search the area for dangerous contaminants.”All of this will occur out of direct sight, without human intervention and without putting human lives at risk,” explained a press release announcing the project, called Extended Operational Reach with Autonomous Air and Ground Vehicles
Next time you’re on the highway and see one of those “Speed Monitored by Aircraft” signs, look up—the United States is getting its first, persistently airborne traffic-monitoring blimp. The lucky winner of this piece of spy tech is the Ohio Department of Transportation. This week, ODOT purchased a $200,000 “Blimp in a Box” from a company called the Drone Aviation Corp. Though the state hasn’t specifically decided what to use it for, issuing speeding tickets from 1,000 feet in the air—and five miles away—is certainly on the table. “They mentioned monitoring agriculture, monitoring large gatherings, penitentiaries, and monitoring traffic,” Dan Erdberg, an official with the company, told me