Trending December 2023 # Drone Diary: New Ipad, New Firmware, And Some New Uses For The Drone # Suggested January 2024 # Top 17 Popular

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When I finally gave in and bought a drone, the DJI Mavic Pro sold itself to me primarily on its portability. This was the first drone on the market that combined the ability to shoot high-quality footage with a form-factor that made it sufficiently portable for handbaggage-only travel.

I used it on weekend trips to both France and Portugal, as seen in my original review video. Sadly, it didn’t get to accompany me on a holiday in Havana. Doing a little research found that the Cuban government takes a dim view of anyone flying drones anywhere around the capital of Havana, where we were staying, so I had to leave it at home.

I have, though, found a couple of unexpected uses for it which I’ll get to shortly …

It’s a given that, no matter when you buy a gadget, it’s only a matter of time before a new and better model is released. In the case of the Mavic Pro, that’s the Platinum model. Fortunately, this was a relatively minor update, so I’m not suffering too much envy of the new toy. It offers more battery-life, and quieter noise levels.

Battery-life hasn’t proven an issue for me. I’ve always felt that I had enough for any individual flight, and because I bought the Fly More combo, I have two spares that adds up to around an hour of real-life flying.

Similarly with the noise levels. Although the drone sounds noisy at ground level, I’ve always been surprised by how quickly it becomes almost inaudible at any height above 30 feet or so.

That said, if I were buying today, I probably would lay out the extra $100 for the Platinum edition, because once you’re spending that kind of money you might as well have the best you can get.

I did hit a couple of small speed-bumps with my own setup. The first was my upgrade to the 10.5-inch iPad Pro. The DJI tablet holder I was using was designed for a 9.7-inch iPad, and the new one was technically just a little bit too big.

I was able to squeeze it into the holder, but it did underline that upgrading to a new size of iPad – even if the difference in external dimensions is small – can mean added cost if you have a number of cases and accessories.

The second was firmware. DJI releases new firmware fairly frequently, and the latest update was a sizeable one. This took almost 25 minutes in two batches, so in hindsight doing this shortly before leaving wasn’t the best idea – especially as you can’t interrupt it once it’s underway.

One of the things DJI is doing in the latest update is cracking down harder on illegal flying. Previously, if you were within controlled airspace (where you cannot legally fly without permission from the Air Traffic Control service), you were warned and then offered the option of ticking a box to say that you had the necessary permission. Predictably, this option was abused, and there have been a number of examples of idiots flying drones close to airports.

While no-one can argue with stopping morons flying drones into aircraft flight-paths, this tighter restriction can be a pain. For example, there is a small regional airport whose airspace covers an area outside London in which I like to fly. The airport tower has been very helpful: I simply phoned them, explained where I wanted to fly, at what height and for how long. Because I was well below the altitude at which I was going to come into conflict with aircraft, they readily granted permission. This kind of informal on-the-day arrangement will no longer be possible.

However, there does seem some common-sense built into the system. For example, while the whole of London is covered by controlled airspace extending all the way from the surface, you clearly wouldn’t be putting aircraft at risk by flying in parkland below the level of surrounding tree-tops and buildings. The drone does still fly at up to 30 metres in height provided that you don’t fly it more than 50 metres away. This restriction still allows sensible use.

One of the reasons I waited a long time before buying a drone was concern that the novelty might wear off very quickly, and an expensive piece of kit might end up gathering dust in a cupboard.

When the Mavic Pro came out, I decided that as it was small enough to accompany me on trips, that was all the mattered. I wouldn’t mind if it was only used a few times a year on holidays and weekends away, as that would be enough to justify its existence.

For the most part, that’s exactly what’s happened: I very rarely use it in the UK. However, it has proved useful on occasion. It’s always a winner with kids, for example, and I have taken my life in my hands and let some family offspring have a little play. But there have also been a couple of times when it proved to have practical value.

The first was when friends bought what is best described as a project house. It had been abandoned many years ago, with something of a Marie Celeste vibe inside in the form of abandoned cans of food, clothing and even photos.

Their plan was to either restore the existing house, or build a new one on the same land – but either way they wanted to use the extensive grounds to build a couple of new eco-homes. These would be built to Passivhaus standards, where little to no artificial energy is used to heat or cool the home.

Getting planning permission for this should have been straightforward, as the land was already designated residential, and planning authorities are receptive to environmentally friendly buildings. However, there was concern about them potentially destroying landscaped grounds. They needed an easy way to demonstrate to planners that what may once have been beautiful gardens was now a jungle, complete with a ramshackle collection of outbuildings.

The drone proved to be the easiest way to do that. I simply flew it up to 100 feet or so and took the overhead photo above, along with some video footage over-flying the land. This did the job.

Second, when it came to selling a flat, the drone really helped. Not only did it provide an eye-catching photo, but video footage was a great way to show some of the facilities in the local area.

A view from the air is a particularly effective way to illustrate that even the most densely-populated areas of London have a surprising amount of greenery.

I would still like to use the drone more for creative projects. I really enjoyed the dance video I shot, and would like to do more of that kind of thing – I just need to create the time for it.

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Some Very Simple Yet Effective Tips For New Streamers

Some Very Simple Yet Effective Tips For New Streamers

As a beginner streamer, you can take these tips as something that’ll get you started or motivate you to get started and take your gaming to the world. And, why not? Whether it is your guitar or game that you play the whole day, why not earn some name, fame, and money along the way?

Where Can I LiveStream My Content?

There are several Livestream platforms where you can stream your content. These include but are not limited to Twitch, YouTube, Picarto, and many others. Want to know how you can stream mobile games on YouTube and Twitch, check out this post.

Tips For Beginner Streamers

First thing’s first, be confident and put away all that fear that has stopped you from live streaming up until this very moment. The world out there is awesome, even with something as simple as a “hi” you can begin your journey and build some great friendships apart from a great audience and then a huge fan following.

– Pick Up Your Niche

At the end of the day, you are creating content based on which you will be interacting with your audience. So, you need to pick up something that you are passionate about if not the best at. It could be gaming, coding, cooking, sketching, music, there is just no end to what you can be passionate about.

– Your Essentials Should Be In Good Condition

It’s not just your mic that you have to check, everything that accounts for your superb gaming should just be on point. Be it your computer (desktop or laptop), PlayStation, Xbox, your mic, your webcam (at least 720p), all tools of the trade should be just perfect. For instance, this is the kind of configuration you might be looking for in a gaming computer.

– Get Essential Software To Stream Or Record Games

If you are sure of your gaming skills and make minimum errors you can directly play games live in front of the community using broadcasting software the likes of Nvidia GeForce Experience or OBS Studio.

But, if you are a beginner gamer or wish to see how your audience is likely going to react to your gaming skills, how about showing them your best gameplays, ascertaining that your wins are more than your losses.

What you can do is record gameplay in high quality and then publish that. Windows gamer? Here are some awesome game recording software for Windows.

We’d recommend that you use a tool like TweakShot Screen Recorder. A decent, easy-to-use, and feature-rich game recording software, TweakShot Screen Recorder doesn’t just help you in recording video but even lets you take complete control over the sound quality as well. You can see a glimpse of what it’s capable of here.

TweakShot Screen Recorder offers –

✅Decent, simple to use interface

✅To capture screenshots of those spectacular moments which you can later post to social media and build your audience

✅Ability to select desired screen region – full, custom region, active window, and webcam

✅To record videos in HD and 4K with no lags

 Download TweakShot Screen Recorder now

– A More Than Decent Internet Condition

When talking of live streaming and going online for a long time, you wouldn’t want any disruptions in between, something that a bad internet reception can cause. You may want to invest in a service provider who offers both great speeds as well as reliability.

What to do, if you are a streamer in an area with average or not so good internet reception. Sometimes, you have to take things into your own hands and get them fixed.

– Mods and Chatbots Can Be Helpful At Times – Perseverance and Consistency Is The Key

Last but not least, be consistent and persistent. You might not stream regularly but at least schedule live streams at regular intervals – days or hours when you would regularly Livestream. The next aspect is to stay strong. Naysayers and haters are bound to harass you but that shouldn’t stop you from doing your thing.

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Sarang Bhargava

The New Facebook Business Timeline Pages – What’s Missing And What’s New?

10 tactics for effective Facebook pages you can implement by 30th March

Value/Importance: [rating=10]

Recommended link: Facebook’s Pages intro

With just one month before switchover to a completely new page layout for companies on Facebook, we’ve rated the impact as 10 out of 5, although that depends on how important Facebook is for your business…

If you’re short on time, I recommend you go straight for the new Facebook pages FAQ for a succinct summary. What Facebook won’t tell you are the marketing tactics that you lose and gain through the new update, that’s what we’ll summarise here, using examples to illustrate the new features.

With an update to a web service, you usually start by looking at what’s new, but with Facebook’s new business pages, what’s most striking is what’s missing since the changes to styling and functionality is so major. What’s missing is a huge headache for companies who are reliant on Facebook as their main way of interacting with customers online, which today is many FMCG brands.

In this update, Facebook have clear aims to keep the visitor within Facebook, and so generate more ad revenue and to enforce consistency of interaction. This isn’t a big surprise since the company pages follow the model of consumer timeline pages launched in January.

No gated Facebook pages encouraging likes to enter a competition.

No permission marketing with data capture in return for information or other forms of value.

No links direct to company website(s) – for example, many retailers have links from their home page to buy through the web store.

No clear positioning messages – these aren’t permitted in the new main page cover image.

No clear customer journeys through panels or links.

No use of campaigns around specific products

You might think from these points, that I don’t like the new design, far from it – if you compare the old to the new, the design is more visually appealing and a better experience in my opinion. There are also opportunities to make good on all of these missing features through applications and other pages.

Changes to make to improve your brand communications

What then, do the new Facebook pages add, what new opportunities do they give? The best place to start is to preview your timeline which you’ll be able to do if you’re an Admin.

These are the key opportunities that are available from a marketing and communications point of view from top to bottom. If you use the preview mode we’ve been using to update  the Smart Insights Facebook page, you can see what’s possible.

Brand essence and value proposition

This is communicated through…

1. The cover photo

The signature feature consumer timelines, this will need special commissioning for best effect as Tiffanys have:

Others don’t work as well for a consumer facing site – Ford have this corporate approach.

Your limited by Facebook’s recommendations, they suggest a popular menu item, album artwork or a picture of people using your product.. They’re NOT allowed to be promotional or contain campaign calls-to-action – the staple of any home or landing page:

Cover images must be at least 399 pixels wide and may not contain:

Price or purchase information, such as “40% off” or “Download it at our website”

Contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page’s About section

References to user interface elements, such as Like or Share, or any other Facebook site features

Calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends”

It’s not clear how they will enforce this..

2. The brand ident

This is straightforward – this is the box on the left.

3. The page summary box

Important to explain your proposition given you can’t add text to the main image. Options are limited according to the type of company.

Facebook says:

“You can edit the information that appears in your Page’s summary box below its profile picture, but you can’t choose which fields display there. The types of information that appear in the summary box are specific to your Page’s category. For example, Pages for restaurants show price range, address, phone number and hours of operation in the summary box, while artist/musician Pages show the About field of the Page’s basic information”.

This example for a hairdressing salon show how small companies can feature maps and other local information that is neat.

4. Direct link to website

This has always been available through the summary info – it’s a trick we’ve used – feature chúng tôi in the summary and it will be displayed. It’s an approach most companies in the preview don’t use – but I noticed this gaming company using the approach prompting a visit to the site.

Customer journeys

Access to different content are available through “views and apps” which appear on the right below the cover image. The Facebook Marketing solutions page gives one of the best examples of these – it’s the best example of a B2B page – you can see here they are expanded:


The pages that are featured before expansion can be moved – so three of the key pages can be moved. Developing appealing icons may help here

6. Apps

Apps become more important for encouraging interactions with this change although it will be more difficult to encourage people to engage with the limited space available for call-to-action. Take a look at the range of Ford apps which include this video/chat box and permission marketing promos.

Publisher / editiorial features

7. Pinned posts

This example shows how we can feature our new infographics in a prominent position top left:

8. Starred posts

By starring a post it will appear across the full-width

9. Timeline

Last, but not least and fundamental to the update you can add images for earlier in the brands history. This has Burberrys have evolved.

Well, those are our tips for setting up your page for effective communications based on a first look. Do let us know any other tips or features to make it more effective – we certainly need to tweak our page in the week ahead.

The Best Apps And Games For New Apple Watch Owners

So, Santa left you a little gift under the Christmas tree in the form of Apple Watch and now you want to know what apps and games you should start off with. Lucky for you, we have recent experience at being new to Apple Watch, as well as about eight months worth of knowing which titles we think are perfect for beginners.

So, if you have just unwrapped your Apple Watch and want to know what you should add first, we have a list of the best 10 apps and games for you.

This game is aptly named. Once you start playing, it is hard to stop. There are hundreds of thousands of basic trivia questions across six categories that are randomly asked of you each turn. The category is selected when Willy the Wheel Spinner spins his wheel of categories. The more questions you get right, the better you score against your friends. Earn all three segments in each category to win it. You can also create your own questions in the Question Factory, which you can share with others. On Apple Watch, you can access all of the same questions and have the same amount of time to quickly answer from the available choices by tapping the option on the screen. It’s fast. It’s fun. It’s like crack. This game is available for $2.99.

Apple Watch may be known for being a fitness wearable, but you may have not realized that it does more than help you work out your body. It also helps you get your brain fit. Brainess is a brain training game that helps you improve your memory, vision, and computer skills. The app features seven exercises that help give your mind a daily workout, including a couple of memorization games, a math challenge, and more. All games are available on Apple Watch. So, if you head out without working out your brain, you can simply call up the games on your wrist worn device and exercise those cells on the road (if you are taking the bus, not driving). This game is available for $0.99.

Map My Run+

Speaking of fitness, Apple Watch comes with a lot of cool sensors for tracking your activities. However, it doesn’t come with a great selection of native software for analyzing that data. This app uses the GPS sensor of your iPhone to track your daily walk, run, or bike ride. It collects data from your pace, route, distance, calories burned, elevation, and more. You can view your stats on your wrist, as you workout. It logs more than 600 different activities and syncs with a number of third-party fitness trackers, like Garmin, Jawbone, and Misfit. Include your goals and current stats to stay on track to get in shape. This app is available for $2.99.

One important activity-tracking feature that Apple decided to leave off its wearable is for sleeping. If you’d like detailed analytics on when you fall asleep, when you are restless, and when you wake up, download this app. All you have to do is keep your Apple Watch on while you sleep and tell the app when you go to sleep and when you wake up. It will gather information on those times when you stirred in the night and when you were deep in sleep. Plus, the app connects to HealthKit to quickly log your nightly sleep cycles so you can have a well-rounded lifestyle tracker. This app is available for free.

If you are the type of person that just hates Apple Maps (we don’t blame you, some of us hate it too), you’ll be disappointed to see that it is sitting on the face of your wrist worn device. You will, however, be happy to know that you can replace it with Google’s mapping service instead. The wearable version features step-by-step text-based navigation after you add the location on iOS. The Apple Watch app also includes three of the most recent routes accessed so you can quickly access them in the future. A recent update provides offline navigation so you don’t even have to use your data when navigating in the big city. This app is available for free.

Another feature that Apple chose to leave of off its wearable is the Reminders app. While you can set up your iPhone to send notifications, many of us would love access to our Reminders app from our Apple Watch for more than just getting notifications. This robust calendar app happens to also connect to your Reminders app in iCloud. You can add items to a list or directly from an event. You can specify dates, times, and even set up geofences to set a reminder when you arrive at or leave from a location. Of course, Fantastical 2 does a whole lot more than reminders, but that’s why we love it on Apple Watch. This app is available for $2.99.

If you also got yourself an Apple TV 4 for Christmas (or maybe you picked it up a couple of months ago when it launched), the first thing you should do is download Apple’s Remote app. Now that it works with the fourth-generation set-top box, you can use it on Apple Watch as a touch pad. Use it to scroll between apps and content on Netflix and Hulu without even having to lean forward to grab the Siri remote. It doesn’t work with games, but it does work with most apps that require moving around and selecting. This app is available for free.

Facebook Messenger is becoming a fairly useful chat app. Recent updates have made it possible to use it to contact anyone, even if you don’t have their phone number or if you aren’t Facebook friends with them. This app keeps you connected to all your Facebook chats right on your wrist. Whenever you get a message, you’ll get a notification on Apple Watch (if you have Notifications turned on for the app). You can respond from the wearable and even send stickers. Send messages using Voice Dictation, or record your thoughts and send them as a audio message. This app is available for free.

When I was a kid, I just thought calculator watches were the coolest thing around. Then, I got an Apple Watch, which does all kinds of cool things, but doesn’t come stock with a calculator. WTF? Luckily, the best iOS calculator maker around, Tapbots, made Calcbot compatible with Apple Watch, so I can impress my friends with my math skills. The app is more than just a basic calculator. You can use it to figure the tip and split the bill with a group or convert different monies around the world. It also works with material conversion, like ounces to pounds or millimeters to inches. This app is available for free.

Congratulations on your new Apple Watch. The longer you have it, the more you will understand what features are most important to you. For now, download the 10 apps above and you’ll be off to a great start.

Playstation 5 Teardown Sees Sony Reveal Some New Console Secrets

PlayStation 5 teardown sees Sony reveal some new console secrets

The launch of the PlayStation 5 is coming up fast, and today, Sony is giving us an up-close look at the new console. Sony has published a teardown of the PlayStation 5 that takes inside and lets us take a peek at the hardware that makes the console run. This isn’t the first time Sony has done something like this, as we also saw it teardown the PlayStation 4 Pro back when that console was the hot new thing.

Before the teardown begins, we get some details about the console as one fully-constructed machine. The PS5’s dimensions clock in at 104mm wide by 390mm tall and 260mm deep, which makes it larger that a PS4. On the front of the console, there’s a 10Gbps USB-C port and a USB-A port, while around the back we’ve got two SuperSpeed USB-A 10Gbps ports, LAN, HDMI, and an AC port, which makes for a fairly standard array of IO (no doubt there are some mourning the loss of optical audio, however).

After a quick overview of the outside, it’s time to actually take the console apart. Sony begins by removing the stand and then by taking off the user-removable white panels. This is where we get to see the PS5’s dust catchers, which attempt to capture dust brought in by the console’s big 120mm fan. Rather than taking the entire console apart to clean out the dust it accumulates over time, Sony says that users simply need to vacuum two holes in the side of the console to remove the dust collected in the catcher.

We also get a look at an M.2 PCIe 4.0 expansion bay for additional storage, which is also user-accessible. It seems that this is as far as Sony intends users to go with their own teardowns of the consoles, as taking apart anything further will likely void warranties – indeed, there are some screws that are covered by security tape, so Sony is going to know if you do anything aside from taking off the two side panels to add storage or vacuum out the dust catcher.

The double-sided air intake fan is the first thing to be removed, followed by the casing and then the console’s disc drive, which Sony notes is housed in sheet metal and has two layers of insulators to reduce noise. With the disc drive taken out, Sony can remove the shield protecting the motherboard, giving us a look at the console’s 8 core/16 thread AMD Ryzen Zen 2 CPU, its AMD Radeon RDNA 2-based GPU, and its 825GB SSD (which boasts raw data transfer rates of up to 5.5GB per second).

With the motherboard removed, we get a look at the PS5’s massive heatsink before Sony removes the console’s 350W power supply to complete the teardown. All in all, it’s an interesting teardown that’s worth a watch, if only because doing this yourself with your own PS5 will void your warranty. You can check out Sony’s full PS5 teardown in the video embedded above, but otherwise, look for the new console to drop on November 12th.

The Drone Federalism Act Would Shift Regulation To State And Local Governments

The Wild West of drone regulation as we know it may soon cease to exist. If lawmakers have their way, state and local governments—including Native American tribal authorities—could soon have the power to regulate the use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems as they see fit.

At least, that’s what a group of Democratic and Republican members of Congress are pitching as the Drone Federalism Act. The biggest takeaway from the bill is a provision that allows state, local and Native American tribal authorities to regulate how hobbyists and businesses can operate their drones below 200 feet and within 200 feet of a structure, with the option to seek assistance from the FAA.

“State, local, and tribal governments have a legitimate interest in protecting public safety and privacy from the misuse of drones,” Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein said in a statement. “This bill allows communities to create low-altitude speed limits, local no-drone zones or rules that are appropriate to their own circumstances.”

A study released in March by the Center for the Study of the Drone at Bard College found that at least 135 local governments across 31 states had already enacted their own UAS regulations.

The bill proposes that the FAA choose 10 local, state and tribal governments to create two-year pilot programs they work together on to craft regulations. The FAA would act as a liaison between the local government regulations and the national drone air traffic management system NASA is working on implementing and then report back best practices and how the FAA should work with local government.

RELATED: Tom Cruise Pulled Off an ‘Outrageous’ Pilot Stunt for ‘American Made’

This all comes on the heels of a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., ruling that the way the FAA wen’t about drone hobbyist registration fell outside the accepted rules of government implementation. This means hobbyists no longer have to register their drones in a national database, or pay the $5 fee, as previously required for any UAS weighing between .55 pounds and 55 pounds.

In an interview with Dronelife, professional drone pilot Vic Moss painted a bleak outlook for operators who have turned the hobby into a business.

“I’ve flown over 55 roof inspections in the last 10 days due to the recent Denver hail storm,” he said. “If Feinstein’s bill had been in effect, and Colorado had fallen into the 200-foot trap, myself and about 30 other pilots would have been out tens of thousands of dollars. And who knows how many insurance adjusters would have fallen off of roofs or ladders in that time? In addition to putting thousands of drone companies out of business, it will set back this industry and its growth potential to levels worse than they were at the very beginning.”

It could also potentially affect first-person-view drone racing, which is a growing segment of the UAS market. Multi GP is a local grassroots-oriented drone racing league that currently has more than 17,000 pilots registered at over 1,000 chapters worldwide, with a large majority located in the United States. The Orlando Multi GP chapter Orlando RotoRacers had to work with local government to continue racing at their Orlando chapter, despite over two years running of incident-free flying, because of a local drone ordinance put into place.

While the drone racing leagues you may be familiar with, like DRL on ESPN, DR1 or IDRA may not be affected by this because of their limited events and select paid-for locations, Multi GP — the place where basically every fast American FPV drone pilot got his start—could be affected heavily.

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