One of the biggest tech trends of the decade is drones (or UAVs). These flying remote-control machines have allowed us to photograph and video angles that previously would been impossible to capture. Here are some ways in which drones are currently being used and why you may want to grab your hands on one.
Photography with an edge
Whether you’re a hobbyist or a professional photographer, you’ll be opening a whole new world of opportunities by buying a drone. Hobbyists have already been using them to take creative selfies, to explore the shores and to take their own artistic aerial shots. Professional photographers meanwhile have found many applications for them. In real estate advertising, many agencies are now employing photographers with drones to aerial shots of homes to give better idea of the scale. They have also found a place in wedding photography, as well as sports and news journalism replacing the need for helicopters.
Work surveillance and monitoring
Drones can also be used to monitor work and replace the need for human beings to do dangerous or mundane tasks. Drones have found a place in agriculture for monitoring the health of crops, replacing the need for tedious individual crop checks by foot. In terms of safety, drones can be used to access tricky areas such as the tops of buildings and peak of mountains, where sending someone up might be dangerous. Companies such as Martek Marine meanwhile provide nautically specialist drones that can be used to do safety inspections on oil rigs, do expansive ocean surveys and monitor cliff erosion.
As a nature observation tool, drones replace the need for loud helicopters allowing aerial observation without disturbing nature. They can be used to observe treetop wildlife or to get close-up photographs and footage of sea animals like whales and dolphins. Farmers meanwhile can use them to monitor herds of cattle.
Of course, most people are buying drones simply because they’re cool, expensive toys. As well as professional models, there are a number of civilian model drones now on the market for remarkably cheap prices. Many of these still have camera function and a return-home setting and they are surprisingly easy to control. Already there is a racing league for drones called the DRL. Many drone users have also tried combining drones with virtual reality headsets to create the illusion that they are in fact flying through the air.
There are laws when it comes to operating a drone that stop people from using these fun tools maliciously or dangerously. The FAA has already rendered certain parts of airspace prohibited such as flight paths and military zones. Drones – particularly high end ones – can also require a bit of training. And whilst you want to try and avoid a crash, you should probably get insurance as birds have been known to attack some UAVs. Yes, get a drone! But use it sensibly.
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