While you can always go shopping for a drone and purchase one, pre-built and ready to fly and film. If you want something a bit more custom, you enter the world of DIY drones. Joining the DIY drone community has gotten a lot easier thanks to websites like DIY Drones. Jinger Zeng, co-founder of Skyworks, wants to make it even easier.
Skyworks wants to kick start and manufacture Eedu, an easy to assemble, educational drone kit. According to CEO Zeng you can assemble an Eedu drone in about 30 minutes. He wants to remove the complexity of robotics, but still provide a gratifying build experience.
Zeng needs to move fast because both DJI and 3D Robotics are now offering developer platforms for their higher-end drones. The problem here is, you still just have UAVs with attached cameras. Thats a key difference, the Eedu base model doesn’t come with a camera. Why? Skyworks wants to encourage their users to experiment with other sensors. “Our goal is to get our product adopted in classrooms and with hobbyists,” said company CEO Greg Friesmuth. “There’s a lot that can be done with this technology, and we want to enable those people to be able to use it. The Eedu platform empowers builders to create. Showing the power of the platform, Skyworks created a drone laser tag game. Eedu has earned a spot as a “KickStarter Staff Pick.”
If you have about $1,000 to spare and just want to take videos of things from the sky, then you should get a consumer drone. But if you want a drone that can hear, smell, or play laser tag, you’ll have to build one yourself. Thanks to a new drone kit from a startup called Skyworks, that’s not as hard as it sounds.
“Drones can be more than just flying cameras,” Skyworks says on its Kickstarter page for the project, called Eedu. Jinger Zeng, Skyworks’ chief operating officer[sic], told Quartz that they want to encourage makers to build drones that explore all five senses.
Eedu™ – An easy educational drone kit for learning robotics!
Update: I found another article talking about Skyworks. Schools are buying their technology, Bartlett Elementary in Henderson, Nevada, just purchased 20 UAVs for K-12 use. You can thank Selma Bartlett, a local business woman who at 88 was still working part-time at Meadows Bank two years ago, for her support.
Bartlett, an inductee of the Nevada Business Hall of Fame, says the technology is crucial not only to America regaining its place as a technological leader, but for Southern Nevada in diversifying its economy.
“Engineering is very important to me,” she said.
At Bartlett Elementary, the Henderson school named after her, kids can dabble in an afterschool robotics club.
“We need to stay ahead in technology and medicine,” she said. “Otherwise all of the other countries in the world, especially China and India, will be much further ahead than we are. We need to keep up with them.”