drone

Rolls-Royce predicts drone ships in a decade

Rolls-Royce predicts drone ships in a decade

Rolls-Royce may not have a fleet of autonomous luxury cars on the road yet, but the ship-building engineering group that bears the same name is predicting self-piloting drone ships within the next ten years. Over-cautious regulations and nautical miles of red tape are the key factors holding adoption back, Rolls-Royce marine innovation engineering chief Oskar Levander told the FT [subscription required], concluding that the remaining technological challenges around creating autonomous cargo ships are dwarfed by the problem of getting rule-makers around the globe to agree on new standards for such vessels. However, Levander also predicts that autonomous ships could begin operations sooner, albeit on a smaller scale.

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FAA regulation issues will put damper on Amazon drone aspirations, says sources

FAA regulation issues will put damper on Amazon drone aspirations, says sources

Jeff Bezos sees a future where Amazon packages are delivered to customers soon after an order is placed with the use of drones -- in this case, with so-called octocopters. Drones have already seen use in other applications, among them being the movie industry where the devices are fixed with cameras and used to record otherwise difficult shots. While the technology exists and varieties of uses for it are cropping up at increasingly rapid rates, there's one big barrier in the way: the FAA.

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RQ-180 drone leaks continue ahead of Mach 6 “Son of Blackbird”

RQ-180 drone leaks continue ahead of Mach 6 “Son of Blackbird”

The clandestine RQ-180 drone developed for secretive electronic surveillance and strike missions for the US Air Force has been further detailed, though military officials still refuse to confirm the leaked $2bn project. First revealed earlier this month as part of an Air Force project to operate high-altitude remote missions in hostile airspace, the RQ-180 will fly as high as 11 miles up, it's suggested, and be the first in a new breed of super-fast, super-stealth drones slowly becoming public.

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Amazon drone delivery is “fantasy” eBay CEO dismisses

Amazon drone delivery is “fantasy” eBay CEO dismisses

Amazon's drone delivery program, "PrimeAir", has been dismissed as fantasy by eBay's CEO, with the outspoken exec arguing that the online retail giant's aim to have micro-deliveries airborne isn't practical. "We're not really focusing on long-term fantasies," John Donahue told Bloomberg TV when asked about Amazon's moonshot scheme, which according to CEO Jeff Bezos has a 2015 launch target. "We're focusing on things we can do today."

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K5 security robot resembles a non-weaponized Dalek

K5 security robot resembles a non-weaponized Dalek

Technology start-up Knightscope last week debuted a prototype security robot that looks a lot like a Dalek (of Doctor Who infamy.) The K5 Autonomous Data Machine stands five feet high, rolls around on wheels, can sense a variety of potential security threats through an array of sensors, and can instantly notify the police in the event of an emergency. It was shown at the Plug and Play Winter Expo this week, gaining a top-three mention from a panel of 101 Silicon Valley judges.

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RQ-180 Stealth Drone revealed as US Air Force targets hostile skies

RQ-180 Stealth Drone revealed as US Air Force targets hostile skies

Forget Amazon delivery drones; the US Air Force's latest unmanned stealth craft has reportedly already taken to the skies, potentially capable of mounting clandestine electronic warfare in enemy territory. The drone, believed to be the RQ-180 and made as part of a potentially $2bn project by Northrop Grumman, is already running test flights ahead of full operations by 2015, it's reported, and be focused on missions in airspace where the US Air Force's existing, less stealthy unmanned craft cannot go.

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SkyJack, based on Raspberry Pi, is a drone that hijacks other drones

SkyJack, based on Raspberry Pi, is a drone that hijacks other drones

The world is ever changing, and in the next half a decade or so, we could find ourselves living in a science fiction-esque world where our goods are delivered by drones -- except when hijacked by other drones. Such seems to be the idea behind the SkyJack, a drone constructed from a Parrot AR.Drone 2 and a Raspberry Pi board, among other things, that can function autonomously and create sky-bound zombies.

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Amazon drone timeline optimistic but a good idea: Bill Gates

Amazon drone timeline optimistic but a good idea: Bill Gates

Bill Gates thinks four or five years is an "optimistic, or perhaps overoptimistic" timeline for the deployment of Amazon's delivery drones. But in the same breath, Gates praised the project for its potential to impact other areas of society, such as "getting health supplies out to people in tough places." Gates is widely known for his support of global health initiatives through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other philanthropic institutions.

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Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 Elite Edition appears in sand, snow, and jungle colors

Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 Elite Edition appears in sand, snow, and jungle colors

The Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 has been on the scene essentially dominating the press for its unique segment - smartphone-controlled drones - for some time, but until now only in a couple of color combinations. Here in the Fall of 2013, the Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 suits up for hunting season. Three different color combinations are set to be available soon in an "Elite Edition" of the Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 from the folks at Parrot include Sand, Snow, and Jungle.

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