It has only been a few years, and the effects from the drone revolution are starting to effect our lives in ways we couldn’t have imagined. Drones offer us a lot of new capability, but at the same time the abilities that exist for their misuse are significant.
It is amazing how many ways drones can be used, and the developments that are taking place will effect our society in ways we can’t imagine right now. What is most important is that we are aware of the possibilities that exist, and do what we can to encourage benevolent use of drone technology.
Let’s have a look at some of the ways that drones are changing our world, and see how powerful they have become in a very short time.
One of the first industries that really took full advantage of all that drones had to offer was media production. There really isn’t an area of photography and videography that won’t benefit from affordable drones.
Until drones became affordable, many of types of images that drones excel at making were very expensive to create. Part of this change is due to the advances in digital capture as well, and between relatively inexpensive drone technology and high resolution video cameras, the world of professional imaging will never be the same.
While drones are usually associated with images that would have been captured with a helicopter 10 years ago, there are many other ways that they can be used. Dolly and jib arm shots are can be reproduced with drones, and they also offer some clear benefits over existing technologies.
When it comes to capturing images in high risk areas, drones have changed the way we view our capabilities. Because drones can go into places that are dangerous without the risk to life, combat zones that were previously unreachable will now be able to be documented.
The clear downside to this capability is the abuse that has taken place by the paparazzi, and sadly there seems to be little we can do to prevent this. While there are some technologies that will help people to maintain their privacy, in public areas this becomes much more difficult.
In addition to being really inexpensive, many of the entry level drones are tough. So handing over the controls of your drone to your child is really not such a bad idea.
The positive side to this is that kids can learn how to pilot drones when they are very young, and may be able to use those skills later on in their careers.
Drone racing is another area where many people are flocking to in droves. Model airplane flight was always a very expensive hobby, but now drones have changed all of that. Solo drone flight for pleasure or high speed drone racing both represent brand new areas that people love.
Next stop ESPN?
While it is less talked about, the contribution that drones will make to agriculture is perhaps one of the largest. There are many areas within modern agricultural infrastructure that drones are set to revolutionize.
Seeding and crop inspection are perhaps the most important areas that drones will make a big difference in. They can also make the application of fertilizers and pesticides far more efficient.
The magnitude of change that drones create in the agricultural arena is enormous.
For example: when used for tree replanting, drones can do the same amount of work as a team of humans, but they take about 5% of the time to do it. Also, the drones do a much more consistent job.
This is more than an agricultural advancement; it is a revolution.
Police love drones and it isn’t hard to see why. A book could be written describing all the ways that drones are helping law enforcement to do their job, but in the areas of surveillance there is little better than a drone.
Drones are also extremely valuable in the pursuit of suspects, and they can offer capabilities in this regard that are unmatched. While weaponized drones are not currently operational, it will only be a matter of time until the police are able to pursue and subdue suspects with the aid of drones.
While human rights watchers are concerned with the direction that law enforcement drones are going in, we have yet to see any major problems arise from their use.
The Drone Era
It is clear that drones are going to continue to make a huge difference in our lives. In fact, because their introduction is so recent, it would be foolish for us to try to imagine where these technologies will be in even ten years time.
As the capabilities of drones increases, so will the innovation that they inspire. Monitoring their uses is paramount, as the power they give us is incredible.