Saturday, December 13, 2014

The First L.A. Drone Expo, a Review

Los Angeles, CA—I really looked forward to the first ever L.A. Drone Expo.  It happened today at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena. 
The exhibitors came with products and displays.  Hundreds of drone enthusiasts stormed the venue and there was real excitement.
It was terrific to talk with many of the engineers and inventors that have made contributions to this specialized technology. 
Products were for sale everywhere and for the attendees it seemed like their first trip to Disneyland. 
Additionally there were speakers on all of the creative and regulatory issues. 
Speaking of regulatory issues there are those that want cumbersome regulations and those like me that don’t.  It’s seems so un-American to use regulation as a way to reduce competition by making things difficult for the unwashed newbies.
This country was number one in technology, design and innovation.  Somehow we made a Left turn and fell behind.   FAA regulation has already sent to much off our technology and revenue off shore. We may never succeed in catching up.
This technology is moving fast and furiously with new advances every day! 
Now for the ugly:
Perhaps that’s unfair to criticize here because this was the first such an event.   The show management should have put some rules in place for exhibitors. 
I came to cover the event as a journalist and get some important video interviews that were suitable for broadcast.  That proved absolutely impossible. 
One of the larger exhibitors hired a D.J. who flooded the exhibit hall with incredibly loud music.  I like most music but this garbage sucked in a huge way.
I was also very difficult for the attendees to communicate because everyone was shouting at each other to be heard over the DJ’s blaring speakers. 
This drawback is a serious one since no TV news organization would be able to gather broadcast quality interview audio depriving exhibitors needed publicity. 
The music disturbance did not prevent me from meeting terrific people with similar interests and enjoying the event. 
I learned, more information that I really about mapping and the affordability of using FLIR cameras. 
I fully expect that next years Drone Expo will be a lot bigger and a much larger venue will be needed.  I also think the exhibitors learned they need more booth space and workers to deal with the surprising number of attendees.  
I could not resist flying my drone over the venue and sharing the video with you!

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