Saturday, December 26, 2015

Globe Xmas Gift: Delivered by Drone

"The elimination of human labor costs will make them a very efficient delivery system" 

That why the gift still has gotten here?

"Amazon is ready for its drones to fly, but government isn’t" by Hiawatha Bray, Globe Staff
10 hours ago

Like a scene from a science-fiction film, the video shows a sleek airborne robot landing on a suburban lawn to deliver a new pair of shoes. It may be the shopping of the very-near future as envisioned by, which on Sunday offered the most vivid glimpse of its so-called Prime Air service to deliver packages within 30 minutes of ordering.

The new video released to YouTube shows a box of soccer shoes being loaded into the belly of a custom-designed drone. Climbing to around 400 feet the drone whisks along at 55-plus miles an hour to a suburban home with a landing pad sporting the Amazon logo on its lawn.

“One day, seeing Prime Air vehicles will be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road,” Amazon said in an accompanying statement on its website.

Viewed more than 2.5 million times, it was one of most popular videos on YouTube by Monday afternoon. But Amazon’s delivery service is nowhere near ready for lift off — at least as far as the Federal Aviation Administration is concerned.

See: Tuesday Left a Markey 

The problem isn’t technological, but regulatory. Amazon and other companies that want to deliver goods with drones can’t launch until the Federal Aviation Administration issues regulations to govern the practice. And the agency isn’t likely to have those ready for several years—much to Amazon’s frustration.

The agency, charged with ensuring the safety of the nation’s airspace, is trying to determine how hundreds or thousands of small robotic aircraft can buzz around over densely populated areas without slamming into each other or the humans below.

“There would have to be a very thorough program of testing,” said Wayne Plucker, an aerospace technology analyst for Frost & Sullivan.

That timetable doesn’t sit well with Amazon, which is anxious to get its delivery service going.

The company had applied to the FAA in July 2014, for permission to test the Prime Air service in the US. Months later, its application still pending, Amazon was reportedly so frustrated that it moved the drone testing just across the US border to an undisclosed location in Canada. And at a congressional hearing in March, Paul Misener, Amazon’s vice president for Global Public Policy, vented at the FAA, saying the US is lagging other countries in advancing commercial uses for drones.

“This low level of government attention and slow pace are inadequate, especially compared to the regulatory efforts in other countries,” he said. “What the FAA needs is impetus, lest the United States fall further behind.”

One month later the FAA granted Amazon permission to research Prime Air in the US. The company now says it conducts tests of the machines in “multiple international locations.”

See for whom the U.S. government works?

Amazon declined to comment further. It said on its website the drone service would only begin “when and where we have the regulatory support needed to safely realize our vision.”

Plucker said the video could be the online retailer’s way of ginning up public support and pressuring the FAA to finalize its rules.

I'm so sick of being manipulated by corporations, government, and society's managers

Indeed, in its new video Amazon seemingly addresses one of the FAA’s central concerns: the company said its drones use sensors to detect and avoid other objects in the air and on the ground.

The agency is already late in drawing up regulations for the commercial use of short-range drones, the kind used for wedding or real estate photography, or to inspect power lines. The process began in 2012 and final regulations were supposed to have been issued in October. Instead, the agency expects those to come sometime in 2016.

Those drones, the FAA has said, must be operated by a human, who has to stay within sight of the robot at all times.

The Amazon drone program poses a much greater challenge, because it will use totally automated aircraft guides by Global Positioning System satellites; no human pilots will be involved. Moreover those drones will be able to travel for miles, entirely on their own, according to Amazon.

The FAA is not close to permitting the drones. The agency only launched its program to develop regulations for this class of drones in May.

“It’s going to take at least another three years to prove the safety of going beyond line-of-sight,” said Helen Greiner, co-founder of iRobot Corp., who now run CyPhy Works Inc. of Danvers, which makes drones for police and military agencies.

That's where you can PARC 'em.

The Amazon aircraft shown in the new video is a working prototype, one of several designs the company has been testing since it first proposed drone delivery two years ago. The company said it weighs less than 55 pounds, and can deliver a package weighing up to five pounds as far as 15 miles.

Some analysts said the video raised a number of questions.

Dan Kara, a robotics analyst for ABI Research in New York, noted the customer in the video has a big backyard. But he questioned if there are enough such customers with big yards to make the concept work, and asked how Amazon would deliver to millions of shoppers who live in apartment buildings.

Maybe delivery will be exclusive and only for those who can pay extra.

And Plucker observed that the Amazon drone is only delivering one package at a time, a highly inefficient way compared to the hundreds that firms such as United Parcel Service deliver from a single truck.

“That sure makes it hard to build a business case for it,” Plucker said. 

Fed-Ex can!

Greiner is far more optimistic. She argues that once the drones are paid for, they’ll cost virtually nothing to run, except for routine replacement of their rechargeable batteries. The elimination of human labor costs will make them a very efficient delivery system, she said.

You are an afterthought, human, if you are not part of the elite Illuminati.


Have they started serving drinks yet?


"Drones are expected to be hot sellers this holiday season. Now it looks as if owners of nearly all those machines will have to register with the federal government and have the information placed in a national database, as officials look to address concerns over safety and the mischief caused by unmanned aircraft. The proposed regulations were outlined in a report released Monday by the Federal Aviation Administration. The recommendations came from a task force created by the agency and are widely expected to be approved in a few weeks, ahead of what is expected to be a big increase of drone owners after Christmas." 

Better off returning it.

"New technology making drones easier, more affordable" by Taryn Luna Globe Correspondent  December 09, 2015

The must-have gift of the season isn’t a Frozen doll or a loom to weave rubberband bracelets.

This year everyone from elementary schoolers to the 59-year-old governor of Massachusetts is asking Santa for a drone.


I'm not going to panic if I don't get one.

The popularity of recreational drones is reaching new heights. Drones have been available to shoppers for years, but recent technological advances that make them easier to fly and offer higher quality cameras have turned a novelty item into a product with mass market appeal. The Federal Aviation Administration anticipates 1 million will be sold this holiday season.

“The transition came when we stopped thinking about them as flying toys, but flying cameras with high-quality specs,” said Ben Arnold, a consumer technology analyst with the NPD Group of New York. “It brought a new kind of consumer into the market.”

But before deciding which one is the best gift this Christmas, there are a few things you should consider....

"If you’re planning to buy someone a remote-controlled aircraft as a Christmas gift, Abby Speicher hopes you’ll spend a little extra and buy some lessons, too. Speicher is founder of Woburn-based DartDrones, one of the few companies that offer flight training for drone pilots. Her company’s “Santa Certified” program is offering lessons to new drone owners in 20 US cities, including Boston. Santa Certified doesn’t actually teach people how to fly, but when and where. It’s a two-hour indoor course covering the Federal Aviation Administration’s “rules of the road” for recreational drone use. And plenty of people need to learn the rulesthe federal government has predicted that Americans will buy a million drones as holiday gifts this year."

Maybe you could pay for this, too:

"Most drones will soon require registration" by Tom Krisher Associated Press  December 14, 2015

Drones have become increasingly popular with hobbyists. The FAA estimates that 1.6 million small unmanned aircraft will be sold this year, with half during the last three months of the year.

The drones must be marked with the owner’s unique registration number. The FAA said that would let authorities track down owners if they violate the rules. But registration also gives the agency a vehicle to educate owners just as thousands get drones as presents for Christmas and other holidays.

Registration will cost $5 and must be renewed every three years, but the fee will be waived for the first 30 days, until Jan. 20. Owners will have to provide their name, and their home and e-mail addresses. Their identity will be verified and payments made by credit card, the agency said.

The government going to keep that information safe because their record is abysmal.

The FAA said it used some of the recommendations from a task force appointed by Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, but the move disappointed a large group representing model airplane users.

The Muncie, Ind.-based Academy of Model Aeronautics said registration is an ‘‘unnecessary burden for our more than 185,000 members who have been operating safely for decades.’’ The group maintains that Congress in 2012 prohibited the FAA from new rules for recreational model aircraft users who are part of a community-based organization.

Is this bankrupt, wealth $erving government grabbing for all the loot it can get or what? 

Most model airplanes and even some flying toys weigh more than a half-pound and may need to be registered, the academy said.

The requirement won support from others, including the Air Line Pilots Association, which said it is a tool to help make sure drone owners share the skies safely with airplanes. The association would like to see registration required when unmanned aircraft are sold.

Government and industry officials have expressed concern that drones, like birds, could be sucked into an aircraft engine, smash a cockpit windshield, or damage a critical aircraft surface area and cause a crash.

And could be used by terrorists, right?

Drones are responsible for at least 28 recent instances in which pilots veered off course to avoid a collision, according to an analysis of FAA reports by Bard College’s Center for the Study of the Drone in Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y.


Yeah, "it is just a matter of time before some of the popular unmanned crafts crash into planes and helicopters, potentially causing significant damage and even deaths."

Speaking of drone deaths:

"More civilian casualties feared in drone strikes; Military now has most oversight, not Congress" by Ken Dilanian Associated Press  December 24, 2015

WASHINGTON — Putting the US military in charge of drone strikes in Iraq and Syria has effectively reduced congressional scrutiny of those sensitive operations, leaving some activists, lawmakers, and US intelligence officials fearful of increased civilian casualties.

For the last decade, the CIA ran the American effort to find and kill Al Qaeda members with drones, mostly in Pakistan and Yemen, outside of declared war zones. But the frequency of those strikes has plummeted to about one a month. The main counterterrorism focus now is the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, where military special operations forces are flying drones that hunt and kill senior militants roughly every two days.

The shift reflects both legal and philosophical considerations. When he announced a framework for targeted killing two years ago, President Obama argued that the military, not a secret intelligence agency, should be the primary instrument of lethal force against terrorists.

But one byproduct of the change, US officials say, is that congressional staffers no longer examine the details of each individual drone strike.

Some CIA officials, lawmakers, and outside activists worry that the new arrangement creates a greater risk of mistakes, given that drone strikes regularly target key militants who don’t wear uniforms and embed themselves in civilian populations. 

Like a military recruiting office?

Congress, they say, should independently review each drone strike to monitor targeting decisions and compliance with rules of engagement.

Until the death delivered by drone based on lies is halted forever this means nothing, and this government is going in the exact opposite direction.

‘‘Congress ought to be exercising equally rigorous oversight irrespective of which agency or department uses lethal force,’’ said Raha Wala, senior counsel at Human Rights First. ‘‘We are talking about some of the most legally, politically, and diplomatically fraught counterterrorism operations, whether they occur in or out of a war zone.’’

The Associated Press interviewed a variety of legislative and executive branch officials for this story, nearly all of whom declined to be named because they weren’t authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

As the CIA’s drone war in Pakistan ramped up in 2010, the spy agency was conducting more than two attacks a week. Intelligence committee staffers with security clearances began driving to CIA headquarters to watch video of each drone strike in Pakistan and Yemen as they reviewed the intelligence documents undergirding the decisions to press the button.

Because CIA drone strikes are covert, the CIA must disclose them to the House and Senate intelligence committees. The military does not face the same legal requirement.

Military drone strikes in Iraq and Syria, by contrast, are scrutinized by committees that have shown great deference to the armed forces.

It's almost a miracle.


The whole program and transfer eliminates some needless human labor, doesn't it?

Maybe there is some other way the gift could be delivered?

"Hoverboards have gone from a hot gift this holiday season to literally the hottest gift this month as regulators are investigating reports of the batteries catching on fire, raising safety concerns about the devices. Hoverboards, which are like skateboards that move as a rider leans one way or the other, can cost as little as $200. Celebrities from Justin Bieber to Wiz Khalifa have posted videos of themselves on the devices, which helped popularize them. In general, the hoverboards rely on rechargeable lithium batteries, which have raised concerns for airlines in the past."

"Hoverboards, the two-wheeled, gliding motorized scooters that have taken over sidewalks and social media in recent months, are facing greater scrutiny after reports of fires and explosions. With the fad growing and people getting hurt, some online retailers are removing the products from their sites, and the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission is investigating as the Christmas shopping season rolls on. The self-balancing boards do not actually hover or fly, but they go fast enough to attract trouble. Officials have banned the toys from city sidewalks and from airplanes, and fire marshals across the United States are issuing warnings against them amid stories of fires and explosions."

Better douse it with some water to put out the fire.


"Drone development on the upswing in North Dakota" by Quentin Hardy New York Times  December 27, 2015

FARGO, N.D. —Grand Forks Air Force Base, 80 miles north of Fargo, has been an all-drone base since 2013. Big Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicles, made by Northrop Grumman, fly reconnaissance missions from the Yukon to Venezuela from there.

Some suspect it was in fact a Global Hawk that was flown into the Pentagon on 9/11; however, you will need to research that yourself right now. Time is flying by and I need to get moving.

In a smaller brick building in Fargo, Mueller was once part of a North Dakota Air National Guard unit that flies missions over the Mideast and Afghanistan.

Customs and Border Protection uses the Grand Forks field to patrol from Seattle to the Great Lakes with slightly smaller Predator drones.

Where B-52 bombers stood ready with nuclear bombs in the Cold War, the country’s first commercial unmanned aerial vehicle industrial park is under construction. Northrop Grumman and General Atomics, the Predator maker, are taking space to train pilots for international sales of the craft.

Nearby, the University of North Dakota, which trains many of the nation’s commercial pilots and the air traffic controllers of some 18 countries, has 200 students learning to fly drones in a four-year program that started in 2009; 61 have graduated from it. North Dakota State University, in Fargo, has also started teaching drone courses....

It's all the buzz!


“It’s about creating the leading edge of an industry,” and this Terminator-type future the power elite are leading us to leads me to believe -- as much as I have fought the notion -- that the vast population of the planet is being prepared for a global genocide of some sort, likely from a combination of factors. Wars, disease, famine, a nuclear confrontation and the like. Warren Buffet's Geico has signaled the final countdown (the plans are in place for 2016) as the propaganda pre$$ has been increasingly promoting robotics as they are really only talking to themselves now. Everything you see on TV and read in the paper is over your head, even as the personalities attempt to convince you the focus is on us all. Some of the articles even have subtle and insulting attempts at humor regarding such eventualities. 

It's the EndGame, folks, and it's almost over. All I can say is I have done what I can over these last ten years to try and deliver a change in this society and a reversal of course for this country. It couldn't be more obvious that I have failed when one looks at the state of the world after eight years of Obama and this blog. 

Alas, on I drone....

Salve Regina University bans hoverboards amid safety investigation

Apparently, a student didn't have enough money for a map.