Learning All About Drones
I have mentioned this in several posts already, but I’m becoming very discouraged by the lack of our youth entering the Technical Industry. I’m not just writing about it, I actually live it in my day-to-day job. For over 23+ years, I have been in the IT industry.
Recently we tried to fill a Java programmer role. Out of 20 candidates, we settled on two finalists that had the skills we were looking for. The role was for an entry-level programmer. This was a red flag to my team and me.
This is the purpose for this post about learning all about drones. I don’t mean for this post to be an educational piece to teach all about drones, but to explain the importance of starting the journey to learn all about drones.
There are tons of websites on the subject of flying drones. What about those of us that want to learn about drones and the technology required for them to work? This is the main theme of my post. I want to help those interested in the technology and industry of drones.
Today this industry is taking off like never before. The government has even taking steps for pilots of drones to be certified to fly a drone. This means that drones are here to stay and being taken very serious.
Important use of Drones
Think of farms that have acres and acres of land to cover. Driving out or riding horseback can take time to arrive at a site in trouble. Using a drone the farmer can quickly put the drone over the area where either the crops or cattle are.
Being in place quick and observing conditions can alert the farmer to effectively, put his time and resources on critical needs rather than assessment. The drone can help with the assessment part giving the farmer better control over his farm.
Think about following up after a natural disaster. There are areas that may not be easily reached — except by air. Using a drone one cannot only reach these destinations, but can also assess the conditions; thus making it easier for rescuers and structural engineers.
Another great area emerging for drones is the indie film industry. Many small film crews are looking to drones for shots that previously took very expensive equipment and cameras to capture. Technology has lowered the cost of entry to many of these professions that previously took hundreds of thousands of dollars just to enter.
We can do it today with much smaller and more affordable equipment.
Some of it just by attaching your smartphone to the drone via a Bluetooth connection. Technology like this should be having our youth coming into the technology fields by the droves. Unfortunately, this is not what we are seeing.
I am even working to inspire my own children to look at what technology can do in the areas of interest they have. As parents and schools, we have to do better when it comes to inspiring our youth to seek out technology.
The future isn’t coming, it’s here, and seriously we are not in the forefront anymore. I again see this every day. Companies from India and China are supplying a vast majority of the technical roles in our workforce. This is bad when the largest country of the free world is farming out jobs in the tech industry because we don’t have enough of our own candidates to fill them.
Why Drones For Teaching?
Using drones (and the other part of this blog — robots) to inspire and kick start the imagination of our youth is what I want to do. I want to explain to parents the value of investing in technology such as drones and robots to educate their children.
I want schools to grasp the immense value in providing a quality experience for the kids that show interest in these fields. Many times a program like this will inspire underachieving kids because of the challenge.
Building a drone and programming, it is not easy, but with the right encouragement and patience from those around them. It is possible and very doable. My own son was having trouble in school because for no other reason than he was bored.
This kid can do math in his head that I still have to use paper and pencil to figure out. Algebra he can look at the problem and give you the correct answer. He isn’t able to show his work. He doesn’t understand how he gets the answer, but somewhere in his brain, the formulas make sense.
He gets straight A’s in his math classes. I’m not talking regular addition and subtraction either. Therefore, I took him out of regular school. Put him in a cyber curriculum that could work with his strengths and provide him the challenges he needed.
I didn’t go into the spill about my son to brag about him. I went into it, so that I could show what we, as parents need to do to address our kid’s challenges to learn. Trust me; I was in the principal’s office many times about him acting out. Once because he was locking all of the stalls in the boys bathroom.
Just because he wanted to watch, the other kids try to figure out how to overcome the obstacle of a locked door. I wasn’t proud of his actions, but I realized he was running experiments in his head. Provide an obstacle and see how people overcome them.
This is the mindset we need in the technical industry, with drones so many uses we have yet to uncover. We need people who will work to unlock those obstacles and find solutions. Solutions that are simple and easy for society as a whole to grasp and understand.
School or Self Teaching?
At 50 years old and recently decided to go back to school, getting the degree and certifications to prove I can do the job I currently have. I read posts and watch videos of young individuals putting down the value of education.
When learning how drones work you need not only to be able to learn the concepts but to ask questions. This can be done in an online education, but getting the answers to your questions may take longer than that of an educational institution. Where the instructor is expected to provide quick and timely responses.
The ability to reach out to other students for their insight to various skills and educational topics that a formal education facility provides. As you increase in your knowledge and start to look for employment opportunities having the referral from a professor can go a long way in landing that first job.
In no way am I bashing online training opportunities. I use them myself a lot, but they should be used once you have the base knowledge or to introduce you to a technology.
Learning any way that works for you is the best. I am not trying to sway one way or the other. I just feel that a bad label is being placed on formal education. In the technology field, it still holds weight and really helps to get interviews.
Where do you start?
I recommend for online learning to look into LinkedInLearning.com, Udemy.com, PluralSight.com, and TotalTraining.com. I have used all of these at one time or another to learn skills quickly that I needed in my job.
For formal education, a simple Google search for “Drones+schools” will produce millions of results to review. As parents of young children take a serious look into Drones that teach programming skills. A good place to start is looking at the two posts I have about drones on my sight.
They show the value of what the drone can do and how they teach. If we are willing to pay hundreds of dollars on toys and video game consoles, why not spend a few hundred on educating them while they play.
Heck you might even find a new interest and start a new passion as well. Adults can learn and change careers too.