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Earth Hardware Hacking Idle Build

Remote-Controlled Planes Used For Wildlife Conservation 48 48

Damien1972 writes "Conservationists have converted a remote-controlled plane into a potent tool for conservation. The drone — an HK Bixler equipped with cameras, sensors and GPS — has been used to map deforestation, count orangutans and elephants, and get a bird's eye view of hard-to-access forest areas. During their 4 days of testing in Sumatra, the drone flew 30 missions without a single crash. A mission, which typically lasts about 25 minutes, can cover 50 hectares. The drone, full equipped, costs less than $2,000."

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Remote-Controlled Planes Used For Wildlife Conservation

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  • More drones (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dunbal (464142) * on Thursday February 23, 2012 @09:29PM (#39142999)
    Yay another drone story. I mean there was the drones getting approved by the FAA, then the drone that got shot down, then this drone, and drones everywhere. You'd think it was almost as if someone was pushing some sort of agenda. And drones for the environment. See? Aren't drones good? Now go back to your room and behave, because we're watching...
  • Re:Pigeons (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Ethanol-fueled (1125189) on Thursday February 23, 2012 @09:46PM (#39143113) Homepage Journal
    I know that this is the wrong discussion for mentioning this, but the activists in that case were a bunch of misguided weenies desperately seeking validation. We can expect to see more and more misguided tattle-tales wasting their time when they could be tackling real issues like police brutality.

    I say this because, as somebody who likes to cull the populations of vermin species with the aid of airguns and small-caliber rifles, pigeons are like flies. So are wild rabbits. And common squirrels and chipmunks will also likely not become extinct anytime soon. Those hunters would have saved an awful lot of cars from being shit on. Hell, my friends and I would sit with BB guns in the bushes in a small backyard, pretending to be hunters, dropping the pigeons(and the occasional crow) from the power line above. we filled our neighbors' backyards full of bird corpses.

    Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine had a good piece to say about it. Since I can't find it, I'll paraphrase it for you all:

    " When you go into the desert with a rifle, you have respect for the cacti. [wikipedia.org] They stand tall and proud, some of them have been there for over 100 years. They're like the wise old men of the desert, you respect 'em. But jackrabbits, man, the motherfuckers are like flies. You can shoot 'em all day long. "

  • Re:More drones (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mcrbids (148650) on Thursday February 23, 2012 @10:32PM (#39143453) Journal

    I guess it's popular to link anything and everything to a conspiracy theory, and that's a commentary on our culture. Like anything, drones are a tool. There's nothing to indicate that these environmentallists using drones to survey wildlife has anything to do with da gubbmint watching you, simply that the confluence of cheap, high quality GPS units, computing, and electronics is now making possible applications that were simply infeasible in times past. This type of progress is due to the advancement of technology, not the advancement of a gubbmint agenda.

    Perhaps you missed the part that not only is this drone unmanned, it's unpiloted. Unlike R/C planes which have a limited, set range, this model has waypoints that it uses GPS location to navigate to, extending the range well beyond that possible with normal radio control.

    To me, it's a bit silly to call a model airplane with some electronics taped onto it a "drone" but ever since the military's UAV "drone" project, it's become a buzzword.

  • Re:Pigeons (Score:4, Insightful)

    by identity0 (77976) on Thursday February 23, 2012 @10:55PM (#39143625) Journal

    For those who missed it, a few days ago we had a Huge discussion [slashdot.org] on that topic, about the rights and wrongs of UAVs, surveilance, etc.

    Now I wonder how long it will be before some asshat uses UAVs for completely illegal or unethical things like stalking, attacking people, drug smuggling, etc. and gets the government cracking down on the whole concept like Megaupload and torrent sites.

    I know Sea Shepherd are using UAVs for their anti-whale hunts now, and some people consider them terrorists. How long before some political group decides to use UAVs to intimidate opponents, or some Muslim kids playing with UAVs gets labeled as "terrorists scouting out targets"?

  • by Samantha Wright (1324923) on Friday February 24, 2012 @02:17AM (#39144525) Homepage Journal
    Feel free to debate the facts [slashdot.org]. If you can figure out how to slap 13 mm thick lead shielding onto an aerial drone small enough to manoeuvre in a tight hallway and get a wireless transmitter powerful enough to work under up to 700 mSv [ieee.org], I'm sure you'll be rewarded for your efforts lavishly in both government and private-sector contracts.

"I'm not afraid of dying, I just don't want to be there when it happens." -- Woody Allen