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January 19, 2014

How soon before a drone delivers a pizza to your door?


Drones and other unmanned aircraft are exploding in popularity, and the FAA is scrambling to come up with some regulations for them.

This is one of the funnest stories I've worked on in awhile. I met some interesting people at the North Texas Drone User Group and also the folks at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi who are leading the effort to test the next generation of unmanned aircraft.

While my lead talked about the concept of having a hot pizza delivered to your doorstep by a drone, and some people might scoff at that notion, I do think there is something to this technology. We essentially already have the know-how we need to deploy unmanned aircraft for whatever needs (and wants) we see fit. There are a few kinks. The machines need to be equipped with the ability to detect and avoid each other, and manned aicraft need the ability to do the same. But, to me, it seems the cost of overcoming those hurdles is minimal compared to the potential benefit. So wherever this trend goes, I think it would be wise for transportation writers such as myself to pay close attention.



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