About the Author

Scott Simmie

Scott Simmie is a career multi-platform journalist now specializing in drones and other technology content creation.

He’s worked at senior levels for CBC National News and the Toronto Star, reporting from such locations as China, Russia, Thailand, Ethiopia and more. While at The Star, he covered the X Prize in Mojave – the competition that led to Virgin Galactic and sparked space tourism. He has reported from multiple conflict zones, as an EMMY Nominee, and is the co-author of three best-selling, non-fiction books.

Scott has been working in the world of drones since late 2014. His clients have included DJI.

Follow Scott on Twitter @scottsimmie

Scott Simmie's Favorite Gear

July 30

If there’s a significant storm pretty much anywhere, you can bet Storm Chasers are on the case. One of the best-known is American Reed Timmer, a meteorologist who starred in the Discovery Channel series Storm Chasers. Reed is still chasing, gathering data and video, and experiencing the immense power nature can unleash. His latest posts include drone footage of recent flooding in Utah.

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DJI’s Agras industrial drone is a workhorse. It’s intended for spraying pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizer, but has been put to other uses as well. During the early months of COVID, some of these units were deployed in China to spray disinfectant. They’ve also been used in anti-malarial programs to kill off mosquito larvae. But feeding fish? That’s a new one.

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Oh, man. Here we go again. Another sighting by pilots near Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) of a Jet Pack Man, close to their flight path. But we don’t think it’s a true Jet Pack – though we certainly understand why pilots describe it as such. No, we’re convinced it’s a drone.

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July 29

We didn’t think we’d see this today, but it’s cool: Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg flew a drone today. And not just any drone — it was a DJI Inspire 2.

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Auterion, the Open Source software (and hardware) company that uses its platform to help streamline the work of drone service providers, has some news. Auterion will partner with Workswell to integrate its thermal imaging cameras with Auterion’s Open Source platform.

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We’ve shown you that Iceland volcano in many permutations: ferociously erupting and sending lava soaring, gently bubbling like some tangerine soup, and oozing lava at a steady rate. But this is the first time we’ve seen it like this: New drone videos show that the Iceland volcano has run dry, with no lava… at least for a little bit.

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Every once in a while, as you know, intriguing drone videos catch our eye. But this child FPV pilot from Thailand? Well, he’s an inspiration.

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I’m a big fan of digital artist Reuben Wu. Now, an NFT of one of his pieces of art – which uses a drone coupled with desolate landscapes and an amazing soundscape for an ethereal effect – is being sold at auction as a Non-Fungible Token, or NFT.

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A new image of the sharply designed ZeroZero Robotics V-Coptr Falcon has shown up online. This is a drone many consumers have been waiting to see, with its unusual configuration.

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July 28

Drone deliveries can save time, money, and even – as Zipline has proven repeatedly – save lives. Now, FlytBase, a drone automation platform, has announced the imminent launch of FlytZip, an on-demand, last-mile drone delivery software platform.

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We often refer to drones as “flying robots.” Well, here’s a two-legged robot that has learned how to run, and it’s an amazing thing to watch.

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Well, well, well. If you’re looking for a deal on drones, you can’t beat this one: 15 drones at IKEA for CAD $59.99 (US $47.75). Just don’t expect them to fly…

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It’s Wednesday again. Seems like only a week ago that the DroneDJ panel was live on YouTube and Facebook, discussing the latest in drone news. Wait a minute – it was precisely one week ago…

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July 26

Just when we think we’ve seen every imaginable drone video of Iceland’s volcano, something new comes along that – like the volcano itself – is red hot. And this one reflects how the volcano is like a shape-shifter, ever-changing and unpredictable.

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July 25

It’s been a long time coming. But it appears the ZeroZero Robotics V-Copter Falcon drone – which offers a highly unusual design and impressive flight time – is ready to ship to customers.

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July 24

You have to see this. Seriously: You have to see this FPV video taken at a swimming pool – as competitive swimmers take on a 400M freestyle relay race.

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July 23

The US Department of Defense issued a statement Friday saying its position is that “systems produced by Da Jiang Innovations (DJI) pose potential threats to national security.”

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We realized we haven’t done a recent roundup of recommended drones. We also realize that many drone buyers want to get in under the $1,000 price point. So we figured: Let’s highlight what are, in our opinion, the best standard drones for under $1,000 in this Buyer’s Guide.

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It’s a troubling time on this planet. We’ve seen continued wildfires in western North America and massive flooding in parts of Germany and Belgium. In the latest cataclysm, a region of China was hit with a year’s worth of rain in just three days. And drone videos help give us a better sense of the scale of the flood damage.

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July 22

We’ve been seeing drones made by this German company pop up in our social feeds recently, so we thought we’d take a closer look. And yes, we do think the Quantum-Systems Trinity F90Plus, along with its other models, are pretty cool. Have a look; perhaps you’ll agree.

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