The DIY-Drone of the Future Is … a Flying Pogo Stick

By Dawn Lim

Darpa is holding a contest to design the military’s next spy mini-drone. So far, the entrants include a flying pogo stick, a sail that lands on mosques, and an unmanned laser shooter.

Those are some of concept videos submitted to UAV Forge, a Pentagon experiment to crowdsource the development of unmanned aerial vehicles. DIY-drone hobbyists are encouraged to work together to create the flying spy-bot of the future. It has to fit in a rucksack and be operated by just one person without any help, guidelines say.

This isn’t the first time that the Pentagon’s done crowdsourcing exercises. There was the “Network Challenge,” which sent people scrambling around the country for 10 big red balloons in an attempt to “explore the roles the internet and social networking play [in] timely communication, wide-area team-building, and urgent mobilization.” And Darpa also announced this year that it would give $10,000 for the best design for new “Combat Reconnaissance and Combat Delivery & Evacuation” vehicles.


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