On the circuit

Cynthia Wisehart on Drones

12/10/2017 5:17 PM Eastern

Drones are fun, but are they AV? That remains an open question. We took a look at some of the available products starting on page 15 of this issue, and then Bennett Liles (our AV guy and ultra-light pilot) talks to Bob Elliott who uses them in AV applications for a living. I’m still not sure they matter. Well, obviously they matter to Elliott—they are his livelihood. But what about to you?

One way to find out might be to head to ISE 2018 in February at Amsterdam’s RAI Centre. Even if you don’t end up getting into drones, there’s lots of other stuff to see and they serve good coffee and wine/beer on a comfortably dark show floor. So it’s always worth the trip.

If it turns out that you want to pursue your drone dreams at ISE, Stampede has announced that it’s Drone Pavilion.

Here’s how Stampede President and COO Kevin Kelly describes it: “The 2018 Drone Pavilion will feature more models from more manufacturers demonstrating applications across a broader range of vertical markets. In addition, Stampede will again team up with Unmanned Vehicle University to provide a full schedule of application-specific presentations and training sessions, as well as small-group and one-on-one information sessions. The separate Unmanned Vehicle University classes will cover in-depth discussions of various commercial applications and how drones are being used currently—such as public safety, infrastructure inspection, survey/mapping, and aerial cinematography implementations.

Stampede will also bring its Fly Cage, which will host short presentations throughout each day by drone-related manufacturers, who will discuss in more detail how their specific models can be used to support commercial applications.”

That’s a lot of drone. Kelly thinks drones are an AV opportunity. The Drone Pavilion will be a one-of-a-kind chance to see if you agree, and figure out whether drones go on your personal wish list or your business plan.

And in case you needed another reason to drink good coffee and decent wine in a comfortable-lit AV environment, visitors to the Stampede Drone Pavilion will also have a chance to win a drone. One drone will be given away each day of the show. Just put your business card into the raffle drum, and you don’t have to be present to win. Deal.

I also want to take a moment in this issue to acknowledge my fellow Angeleno John Stiernberg who died too young as we go to press. He was a great speaker (and a fellow bluegrass lover) but what endeared him to me was his gift for explaining things, patiently and passionately. Even to a journalist. He is one of many generous people who have gone out of their way for me over the years, which I so appreciate. His family has asked that in that if you wish to celebrate him, please consider a donation to the NAMM foundation.

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