Flying robots at ITP Spring 2014

It used to be that only the wealthy and powerful could put eyes in the sky. Dramatic aerial images of riots and other uprisings–captured by guerrilla drone journalists, activists and protestors—suggest a politically transformative leveling of the playing field. This is what got me and a group of friends excited about flying robots, and eventually organizing the Drones and Aerial Robotics Conference.

Low-end drones are now easy to buy and build—and journalism is the most plausible and politically interesting application of this newly accessible technology.

Yet even the cheapest quadcopter can threaten evisceration or fatality, and unmanned flight is a legal minefield. With all this uncertainty, what are the prospects for drone journalism in the US and globally?

I’m excited to be teaching this class. We’ll be learning about the law, technology, and practice of drone journalism. You’ll meet pioneers of the field, develop conceptual understanding by programming toy drones, and finally conceive & pilot a modest drone journalism mission.

This class could only happen at ITP!