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Travel By Drone
June 13, 2014 8:47 AM   Subscribe

TravelByDrone is a site that lets anyone upload videos and add the corresponding location, which is then pinned onto a map for you to choose from.

A video will not be accepted if it is taken indoors, is from a military drone or is of promotional nature (promoting a product or has a political, religious or other personal message).
posted by gman (17 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

 
wow, this is really cool! makes me wish i had a drone of my own...
posted by rebent at 8:54 AM on June 13


reminds me of this art project "Night Walk in Marseille" that uses google maps + local artist knowledge to meander the city virtually with a narrated guided tour. It's strangely immersive, and I did feel like I was there.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 9:01 AM on June 13


So what kind of hardware does one need for this kind of thing? I almost bought a quadrotor at a local hobby shop, but they told me "look, I'm gonna be honest with you; the range on these things is terrible".

So many toys to buy; such poor money-management skills on my part.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 10:03 AM on June 13


(and "by this kind of thing", I mean being able to fly something around an area bigger than a suburban housing lot)
posted by escape from the potato planet at 10:05 AM on June 13


We need to stop referring to RC quadcopters as "drones." There's a difference, isn't there?

So what kind of hardware does one need for this kind of thing? I almost bought a quadrotor at a local hobby shop, but they told me "look, I'm gonna be honest with you; the range on these things is terrible".

I have I think a $60 quad with a shitty video camera on it and it's a freakin' blast to fly. It's true, range is maybe 100 feet or so, but enough to get above the trees and see what's around your neighborhood. Good way to get your feet wet if you think you wand to upgrade to a flying HD cam though.

It's worth it just for the videos my cats being terrorized.
posted by bondcliff at 10:14 AM on June 13 [2 favorites]


Not sure why you wouldn't call it a drone. My dictionary says, "a remote-controlled pilotless aircraft or missile."
posted by cjorgensen at 10:30 AM on June 13


I should upload some of my mountain bike handlebar cam feeds to this and see if I can get away with it.
posted by planetesimal at 10:32 AM on June 13


I think of drones has having some sort of autonomy. R/C planes and the like require a pilot, though the pilot isn't actually sitting in the aircraft.

Some of these things are drones. You can buy a < $1000 quad copter that has GPS in it that will return to the pilot if the R/C signal is lost, and you can also plot a route out for it ahead of time. But your basic cheapo copter that needs to be controlled the entire time? Ain't no drone.

It's like when people call something a robot that is entirely controlled by some guy with a joystick.

I suppose I'm wrong in both cases, given popular definitions, but to my mind robots or drones need to "think" for themselves to some degree.
posted by bondcliff at 10:36 AM on June 13


The drones used by the US Military aren't autonomous in the way you describe, are they?
posted by mulligan at 10:39 AM on June 13


I guess I don't know, but I was under the impression that at least the higher-end models have some sort of autonomy.

I fully accept that "drone" has come to be a generic term for any pilotless thing with a camera on it, I just don't like it. When I am king, it will stop.

Sorry if I derailed the thread. Carry on.
posted by bondcliff at 10:43 AM on June 13 [1 favorite]


"Quadcopter" is a common term. Not to push any product but the DJI Phantom seems to be what a lot of people are using at the consumer level. Range is an issue, they don't go too far.
posted by stbalbach at 10:50 AM on June 13


Range is an issue, they don't go too far

I think it depends on what you define as 'too far.' I have a DJI Phantom and it can certainly fly 1-3 miles away depending on the area. I usually lose the video link first which could be fixed with a more powerful transmitter...

I frequently fly it away until it is a speck in the sky and fly by video alone...
posted by jnnla at 11:28 AM on June 13 [1 favorite]


A somewhat similar site, but targeted more at hardcore drone-flyers, is Droneshare. It's in beta and still getting off the ground, but is backed by 3D Robotics and will probably eventually be a big deal.

It's more for showing off routes flown and analyzing flight controller log files. For example, check out http://www.droneshare.com/mission/4419 and try licking the "Plot" button on the right.
posted by jjwiseman at 6:20 PM on June 13


The drones used by the US Military aren't autonomous in the way you describe, are they?

No they are not. They are flown by a pilot. We're training them right here in Iowa and there are protests involving this. A lot of people don't think we should be contributing to killing people from 3,000 miles away.

Recently there was a movement to qualify the pilots for all the same awards and medals as a traditional pilot.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:33 PM on June 13


Autonomy isn't a binary condition, it's a spectrum, and the military drones are capable of it, too. Even the lowly Predator-B is capable of autonomous flight.

The Global Hawk is even more capable: "Once mission parameters are programmed into Global Hawk, the air vehicle can autonomously taxi, take off, fly, remain on station capturing imagery, return, and land." The first trans-Pacific autonomous flight was made by a Global Hawk 13 years ago. And a version is being tested that can perform aerial refueling autonomously.
posted by jjwiseman at 9:49 AM on June 14


"Drone" is just the common name for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle.
posted by I-baLL at 12:49 PM on June 14


the shared visual collection is amazing. world tour from home. very cool site - simple, easy, captivating.
posted by TMezz at 1:07 PM on June 14


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