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DronePhone update and website

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by DronePhone, Oct 25, 2013.

  1. DronePhone

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    I have completed almost all work on the DronePhone Command Center map client. I have put up a one-page website that shows the new interface at http://www.dronephone.net, where you can also find a link to a video of the prototype in action.

    The next things to do are:

    1. Build a DronePhone Tracker client for Android. Not too much work involved here.
    2. Beef up the server infrastructure to handle user accounts. The server is already hosted on the Amazon cloud. A moderate amount of work.
    3. Promote and make DronePhone a technical and economic success!

    I'm thinking of forming a Kickstarter for this project, since it is taking significant time and effort. I welcome your feedback.
     
  2. rotorhead42

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    This is perfect, let me know as soon as it`s working, I would pay a yearly fee for the service. How do you link the app to the phantom? do we need to add a gps to the unit?
     
  3. DronePhone

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    What you will need is an Android or Windows Phone 8 smartphone. There is a Tracker application that you install to the phone that uses the phone's internal GPS. The Windows Phone 8 prototype is seen here:

    [​IMG]

    Before you fly, you type in a FlightID and press the Track button (it says "stop tracking" in the photo above). Then, you can go to your camera app and start video recording or whatever, mount the phone to the Phantom (I use a tripod smartphone bracket zip-tied to my anti-jello mount), and fly.

    You can either follow the flight along in real-time by starting the DronePhone Command Center application, signing in with your username/password and the FlightID you entered on the Tracker, and watch while flying or you can just look at your track anytime after the flight.

    The flight data can be stored locally on your PC so you can use it in some other application like Excel, or later can be exported as GeoRSS to feed other GIS applications or Google Maps. Of course, the flight data also resides on the server.

    Once I've built the Android app and user login features (a couple weeks, hopefully), I will start a public trial through Kickstarter. Early users will have a chance to impact the future design and features.

    One feature I'd like to have soon is the ability to send commands and receive data from an attached Arduino microcontroller.

    This sort of system adds intelligence and commands to drones without expansion capability, like the Phantom, and provides other drones with such systems (like the Arducopter), a completely independent means of receiving telemetry and sending commands to non-flight systems.
     
  4. rotorhead42

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    I think it`s far better that you talk to a chinese GPS maker and get your stuff into their firmware. They`re selling cheap gps you can sell to us here and make a big profit. Buying an expensive, heavy phone to add to a Phantom on top of all the gigs, it`s unfeasible. Garmin at $200, too expensive. There`s a cheap tracker that actually works, on Ebay.
     
  5. DronePhone

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    You can get a Nokia 521 pre-paid Windows Phone 8 with excellent GPS and 720p video camera from WalMart for $99. This is the phone I use, and it's 1/4th the price of a GoPro. It weights 124 grams, about the same as a GoPro.

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/T-Mobile-Pre- ... e/24099994