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Sun, Feb 13, 2011

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (02.13.11)

Aero-Linx!

Scouring the information super airways can sometimes be a tough, if educational, task for the Aero-News staff... but it also allows us to check out some truly neat and exciting sites, so it's not that bad a gig. On any given day, we may check dozens (and often hundreds) of different sources for story ideas, and facts confirmation. And, as is the nature of our business, much of this is done on the Internet.

The ANN gang decided we probably shouldn't keep some of the neat sites, info resources, and organizations we've discovered to ourselves... so we decided to bring you Aero-Linx. These are the sites that WE check out -- when we need added perspective, a new spin on a day's topic... or just want to escape into cyber-aero-space for awhile.

Look for some of our favorite sites, coming each day to ANN via Aero-Linx. Suggestions for future Aero-Linx segments are always welcome, as well.

Aero-Linx: DIY Drones

This is a site for all things about amateur Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV, colloquially known as a "drone") is basically an aerial robot. As we define it, it is capable of both remotely controlled flight (like a regular RC aircraft) and fully-autonomous flight, controlled by sensors, GPS, and onboard computers performing the functions of an autopilot. Our UAVs include airplanes, helicopters, quadcopters and blimps. Most of them are under five pounds, and some of them (especially the blimps) can be used indoors.

We are focused on non-commercial ("recreational") projects by amateurs, although pros are always welcome too. Reasons to make your own UAV range from a fun technical challenge, student contests, aerial photography and mapping (what we call "GeoCrawling"), and scientific sensing. We are primarily interested in civilian, not military, UAV uses here.

FMI: http://diydrones.com

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