Keith

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About Keith

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  1. When it comes to learning FPV racing smaller and lighter is better. Far more likely to survive a crash. My next build is going to be a RotorX RX122 Atom. They even have some monster 4S motors for utterly insane speeds http://www.rc-drones.com/RotorX_c_199.html
  2. It runs Pix4D Mapper to do the processing. But it promises to make publishing data to the web much easier. I'm very excited that Esri is getting into the game. I'll be participating in this Beta for sure.
  3. Esri is getting into the UAV game with Drone 2 Map. It's built off of Pix4D Mapper. Open beta right now for those with ArcGIS Online accounts. http://www.esri.com/products/drone2map#beta
  4. I also spoke to the folks at Drone Law and was told that you are essentially in the clear to operate aircraft not listed on your exemption so long as they have been approved by the FAA in other exemptions. Just send in the addendum and go ahead in operate in the mean time.
  5. Yeah I think that's a smart approach. This way it's more like: look what I did as a hobbyist and I'll soon be able to do this for you once my exemption goes through.
  6. My angle is more on routine services. Inspections that are done over and over again on a schedule. Replacing traditional ground based methods with cost effective aerial based methods. I want to build a system and methodology that can support new applications as they become economical. This is where the real long term money is in the industry. Much of the rest of the industry is a race too the bottom. Most of the UAV manufactures are going to go under of consolidate over the next decade. The film industry is quickly becoming saturated. However the commercial service industry is virtually untapped with endless use cases. Yes, there are others working towards the same goal. But what's currently on the market still leaves a lot to be desired. I've been working at this same problem professionally from the other side of the coin as well. I'm trying to find service providers to contract to do sUAS inspections of renewable plants. FAA regulations are the main thing killing the economics of it right now. Once the pilot and line of site requires go away the game is really on. There is a need for a true SaaS UAV platform. A platform that business can easily incorporate into their existing workflows. This goes beyond processing imagery into 3D models like DroneDeploye. The next step is to do analysis on the data and generate actionable reports. A good example is inspecting solar panels. No one wants to look at imagery. They want to know which panels need to be replaced. However, that being said imagery still need to be easily accessible through interactive webmaps that overlay customer assets, This is key to tracking trends and eventual "big data" analytics. So right now I'm still exploring all of this and have been throwing around ideas for a business plan with some colleagues. As I work though this same problem from the angle of the contractor of services I've been learning a great deal and it's helping to guide the discussion. In many ways the technology is not the problem. It's all about proper cost effective implementation. I'm not really looking to build a cloud platform from scratch, rather make use of industry standard GIS technology and tailor a solution for sUAS. So I'm not ready for developers just yet. A business plan comes first. Right now I'm looking to network and build relationships with interested parties and see where all this goes. A project like this needs input from many subject mater experts so that's where I am now. Just a little bit on my background. I'm the GIS Manger for Business Development for the North American side of a multi national green energy company. I'm a model aviation enthusiast who loves to build/fly/crash/repeat. I won an international innovation competition for an entry on incorporating drones into the operations of renewable plants. I'm working to build a sUAS pilot project for my employer.
  7. My situation is a bit different than most. I'm looking to start a UaaS (UAV as a Service) startup that services industry to reduce costs. UAV's are only half the equation. Efficient systems to automate processing of collected data (traditional/multi-spectrum/thermal/lidar/etc) into actionable reports are key to unlocking their potential. A strong foundation in GIS (Geographical Information Systems) is fundamental to this endeavor. I'm looking to design a framework that's UAV agnostic and flexible enough to be applicable to many industry applications. A few potential markets include Photo-voltaic inspections, Wind Turbine Inspections, Multi-Spectrum Agriculture Crop Plans, Insurance Inspections, Disaster Recovery, Pipeline Inspections, Transmission Line Inspections. My biggest challenge is developing a viable business plan and finding others willing to work with me on this venture. I could much more detail, but I'll leave it here for the moment.
  8. Having a website and marketing is not the problem. In my opinion using imagery you personally collected "recreational" on your business website is a risk since its clearly being used for commercial purposes. It's small but a risk none the less. I know Alan disagrees with me here. But it's still something to be aware of. Would I follow my own advice. Probably not. So it's just a matter of how close you want to walk the line. The reality is the FAA has bigger fish to fry.
  9. It's all relative to what you are trying to do. As a one man startup you don't have much to lose and will pretty much be off the radar of the FAA. Just don't post "evidence" they can use against you online. That would be my advice. For an existing business that is looking to integrate UAV's it's a different story. They should walk the line since they are a bigger target and have much more to lose. There is also more to consider than just the FAA. Your insurance company could potentially deny claims for operating "rouge". On that note you might want to add information about insurance.
  10. Just a FYI. Just because you are not being paid or making a profit does not make what you're doing non-commercial. You really should not have any sUAS imagery you collected without an exemption on your business website. Your competitors could rat you out to the FAA. Chances are nothing will come of it, but in my opinion it's not a risk worth taking. Sorry to be Mr. Buzzkill here.
  11. I'm investigating incorporating UAV's into operations an maintenance actives for renewable plants and there does not really seem to be any companies out there that offer a total solution as a service. Wondering what others have seen on the market place? Looking for solutions that include everything from flying, analysis, presentation to archival storage. It all needs to be spatially oriented with strong GIS capabilities. Right now this seems to be whats missing in the industry. Any advice?
  12. I was just out in Kansas last week
  13. Yeah, I'm looking for a Inspire 1 Pro. Can't find any significant deals. I'm on the fence since I have a Phantom 3 Pro and don't need it for a few months. So the hunt continues.
  14. Keith

    Solar

    Yes. It's going to be a game changer. I'm eagerly waiting its release.