Oh the stars, they shine down

They move like hands unseen

In their wake they leave me a map

With my eyes raised, I read the future.

— A bird.

A little side note; I’m the bird.

If you haven’t seen Time magazine’s latest cover, you should check it out. Aptly titled “The Drone Age”, it delves into drone technology and how it’s changing the world. Note the use of ‘it is’ and not ‘will’.

The cover design and the camera shot were done with drones, it is by no means out of place if I say the team did a damn good job with the whole operation. With the success Intel Corp. had 3 months ago when it used 1,218 drones to create the Olympic rings at the 2018 Winter Olympics, I would say a feat like the Time cover is expected. After all, there’s that saying not to rest on one’s oars right?

While we have been carried away by sci-fi, especially films, drones have been creeping up on us. They are no longer the future, they are now. Time’s Alex Fitzpatrick was quite right when he said,

“Civilian uses have long been more promise than reality. That’s finally changing…”

To put that comment in perspective, last year at the GTBank Fashion Weekend , I saw drones flying all about the venue, creeping up behind people like little monsters. This shows that accessibility to the tech is on a good average and when you can get one for a few hundred dollars, you sure can add this to the excitement of the ability to reach places our body can’t reach with our eyes.

Earlier in the year, the fashion world was excited about the ‘in your face’ stunt by Dolce and Gabbana at the Milan Fashion Week. The brand used drones rather than models to showcase its bags on the runway. Lisa Franklin, a London-based facialist is also courting the use of drone technology.

In 2015, Katsu used a drone to spray-paint Kendall Jenner’s face on a billboard. Reuben Wu uses them for photography.

The adoption rate of drones is quite high and rapidly increasing. And this is not restricted to security operations and movie production alone. In the medical field, quite a number of organizations are already more than used to it. Talking of Doctors Without Borders, Zipline, Matternet and others. Some of these organizations partner with governments to get needed supplies to far-flung places.

In telecommunication, a good example is AT&T. it used a drone called The Flying Cow to beam mobile data signals in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria unleashed its fury. Agriculture is not left out either. I remember reading in Bio-Strike about a drone that sprays and monitors crops. Turned out that’s as true as the nose on my face.

Brands like Amazon, Facebook, Red Bull, Just Eat, UPS, DHL, Coca-Cola, Shell… they are all using drones to pull off one innovative idea or the other. I can go on and on. All these point to the possibilities drone technology holds for us all. On the flip-side, it’s also a glimpse into the threats that drones pose.

As Fitzpatrick put it, “like it or not, the sky above is about to become busier” with Time. Yes, that’s a limp play at pun 🙂