Think About It: Drone Jones - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

January 6, 2014

Think About It: Drone Jones

Look… up in the sky… it's a bird, it's a plane, it's super… oh, no, it's just a drone. Yes the drones are apparently coming to Hawaii and a free air space near you in the future. Research drones, delivery drones, find-clear-air-in-bad-weather drones, check-on-crops drones, survey land mass drones, I could drone on and on. Some of us have enough trouble worrying about unruly birds flying overhead in terms of repercussions, so the thought of numerous drones flying in our midst sounds worse than a night of mosquitoes buzzing about at a campsite.

And once this Pandora's aircraft is unleashed locally via research, how long before drones become as commonplace for governments, businesses, and others as cell phones and texting are for the common folk, and how will that affect our daily paranoia? Hey, not only is everyone able to watch me on the ground and post some inane picture to a social network site, but now they can even see my bald spot from above! A new blender from dropped off at my house? How essential, because surely I couldn't wait one more day to get it via UPS or mail. Yes, now I can have my extra special smoothie a day earlier. Thank you from above! Yes, it'll be instant gratification- the new American ideal.

One of the aspects to be discussed in Hawaii is the so-called "sense and avoid" drone capabilities vis a vis other aircraft. Gee, you think?! What a great idea; let's make sure these devices don't interfere with, say, commercial aircraft, buildings, hang gliders, and power lines. Lots of questions to be answered as technology once again dictates what we've decided to do. But just like the question of the social costs of allowing cell phone usage on airplanes, the question is not can we do this with drones, but should we do this, and what are the boundaries? Stay tuned, look out, and look up… but keep your head down; they're watching. Think about it…

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