Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Microdrones

This was in the news a few weeks back:

Microdrones, Some as Small as Bugs, Are Poised to Alter War - NYTimes.com: "The Pentagon now has some 7,000 aerial drones, compared with fewer than 50 a decade ago. Within the next decade the Air Force anticipates a decrease in manned aircraft but expects its number of “multirole” aerial drones like the Reaper — the ones that spy as well as strike — to nearly quadruple, to 536. Already the Air Force is training more remote pilots, 350 this year alone, than fighter and bomber pilots combined.

“It’s a growth market,” said Ashton B. Carter, the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer."

On one hand, cool! Robots!  On the other hand, these are war toys, and some folks would like to see them being tested in Easter Oregon.   What I want to know is, why isn't the department of agriculture working with microdrones to improve farming and ranching techniques?   Or why isn't the parks service using these to monitor forest fires?  And could microdrones become the guardians of the very young and the very old?  Or deliver pizzas?
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