by Graham Sheldon | 5th December 2016
With a name like DroneShield, it is pretty clear what the goal of the company is. All of their products revolve around detecting – and now subduing – unwelcome drones approaching restricted airspace with their new rifle style device called the DroneGun. Well, folks… we are finally there. We now live in a world where weapons are created to bring down drones originally intended for aerial photography, or just good healthy fun. I suppose it was inevitable, what with numerous reported incidents of small personal UAV’s straying too close to aircraft, but I honestly thought we were a few years away from this. I was wrong. The DroneGun video has to be seen to be believed: There is a healthy amount of scare tactics employed in this video in the form of a faceless villain with a controller, but the use of the device seems pretty straight forward in a literal point-and-shoot kind of way. The product is aimed at government agencies interested in defending their airspace from potentially explosive-carrying UAV threats. Given that small drones are already being used by terrorist organizations, there could certainly be a market out there for this type of device. In contrast to simply shooting the drone out of the sky, the DroneGun can direct the drone to return to the owner, or to land in place. Both options result in an intact drone, and an intact drone leads to evidence gathering. Using the gun to drag the drone to the ground looks pretty great in the above video, but I’d love to see a hands on review by a 3rd party — tricky, as it hasn’t been certified by the FCC. The rifle-shaped weapon comes packed in a Pelican hard case and is powered by V-mount batteries – convenient for government agencies with a videography department. One of the more impressive aspects of the DroneGun is its promised 1.2 mile range, which is more than enough distance to protect your landmark or airport from a threat. DroneShield, the company, also sells two types of drone sensors, a processor for these sensors and user interface software for watching drones in your airspace in real time. There is no pricing available for any of DroneShield’s products, but there is a handy email contact for interested government buyers. Credit: Sony Entertainment – Future drone defense force pictured above. Despite looking like something out of the Ghostbusters prop department, the DroneGun appears to be a necessary device in our ever-changing world. Be cautious where you fly your drones, folks. Price: TBD Availability: Now, if you are a government agency.Read more
by Fabian Chaundy | 22nd February 2016
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has approved a proposal to open up the current model of cable television subscription in the US. This would allow a drop in prices by introducing software and hardware innovations, such as enjoying cable subscriptions through VoD systems like those from Apple, Google and Amazon. The process of subscribing to a cable television provider in the US has remained reasonably unchanged for the last few decades. The lease of a set-top box in addition to the monthly subscription is a necessary expense, and one that has been on a steep rise for the last 20 years, while conversely the costs of devices such as computers, televisions and mobiles have been dropping (source: FCC). Responding to the need for innovation and competition, the FCC is proposing to introduce a framework by which providers must deliver necessary information and content to third-parties. This would allow cable TV content to be delivered through other hardware or software solutions, giving viewers a choice in how they receive their content. This would mean that you could use your Android TV, Amazon’s Fire TV, or Apple TV devices to access your cable subscription. Alternatively, it could be available to be viewed in app form within mobile devices and computers, allowing you to enjoy your subscription on the go. Ideally, this push to “unlock the box” would reduce the total cost of subscribing to a cable television provider by eliminating the extra expense of leasing a set-top box. This, in turn, could lead to an increase in subscriptions, and thus a higher demand for content. It will be interesting to see what this will mean to content creators, and whether it will generate a shift in both the kind and the amount of content they produce. It is still early days, but in a time of further and further democratisation of content creation through better and more affordable video solutions, it is interesting to see legislation follow suit at the delivery end. Do you think moves like these will affect the production industry in general? Post your comments below!Read more
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