Quadcopter Videos

I considered buying a remote controlled helipcopter with a video camera, or more accurately, a quadcopter, which as its name suggests, has 4 rotors.

For less than £1000 it is possible to buy a quadcopter fitted with a full HD video camera. It is also possible to configure a copter with a realtime first-person view (FPV) transmitted to the pilot’s controller or even to goggles worn by the ground based pilot.

A typical machine is shown below.

Quadcopter with HD video camera

For the moment, however, I’m content to watch the shared experiences of other pilots.

The increasing popularity of these devices has resulted in a large number of videos being uploaded to video sharing websites. Whilst many clips are uninspiring in terms of content and/or quality, there are some excellent uploads, demonstrating considerable piloting skills and confidence, and some excellent camera work.

Here are a few of the best I’ve found.
Most of these videos were created at 1080p (i.e. full high definition), and I recommend viewing at that size if possible.

Incidentally, many of these videos do not have useful search keywords in their title or description, making the task of finding these videos quite tricky.

The phrase “DJI Pantom” (a popular model) worked well for my searches, when “quadcopter” or “uav” failed.

New York, New York, United States of America

Some superb video around Central Park, Lower Manhatten and other areas of the Big Apple.

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Cycle Race and Some Over-Water Filming, Wales, United Kingdom

This is a compilation of some great footage. I love the cycle race start at about 1.12.

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Agulha do Diablo (Devil’s Needle), Brazil

Some stunning mountainside footage. There’s more to Brazil than beaches and soccer.

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Bixby Creek Bridge, California, United States of America

Flying around a bridge in a dramatic landscape in sunny California.

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Powerboat Race, Florida, United States of America

This appears to be a commercial production, with some very slick editing, but it shows the view from quadcopters chasing and racing powerboats; what more can you say?

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Battersea Power Station, London, United Kingdom

It sounds un-glamorous, but look at the great video that the copter is able to capture.

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Weymouth Harbour, Dorset, United Kingdom

The pilot flies around the fort at the entrance, enters Dorset’s prettiest harbour, and files under the harbour bridge at about 2.45 (video time).

You can view the video below, or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Puerto de Alcudia Beach, Mallorca

Fans of the hot beaches and blue seas of the Balearic Islands may appreciate this flight around the beaches of Puerto de Alcudia.

Click on the image to view the video in YouTube.


Grimsby and Cleethorpes, United Kingdom

This video does not feature 1080p, but do enjoy the 720p footage of a flight which includes Cleethorpes pier, the fort in the Humber, and the famous tower at Grimsby docks.

You can view the video below, or or use this link if you prefer to watch in YouTube

Behind The Scenes: World Cup fever at the Simunix office (for some of us at least)

The 2014 world cup will soon be upon us and while some people are very excited by the prospect, others will not be bothered at all. For those not bothered about football you can look forward to some good movies coming out like 22 Jump Street and Transformers: Age of Extinction. If you are a gamer – we have quite a few in our office – you may be keen on trying the new games coming out like EA Sports UFC which features Bruce Lee!
However, for those of you who are interested in football, here are my ramblings on the countries taking part in the world cup.

Algeria
Interesting fact: The Sahara desert covers 80 percent of Algeria.
Player(s) to watch: Nabil Bentaleb of Tottenham Hotspur FC
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Argentina

Interesting fact: The tango originated from Buenos Aires at the end of the 19th century.
Player(s) to watch: Pretty much the whole team! (Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, Javier Mascherono to name a few)
Predicted finish: Winners!

Australia
Interesting fact(s): The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest reef system. Australia has a lot of venomous creatures like the fierce snake and funnel web spider, though as a South African I’m more afraid of a Black mamba or a Boomslang!
Player(s) to watch: Does Harry Kewell still play for them? Just kidding, Tim Cahill is pretty decent even if he does play for Everton! (Guess who’s a Liverpool fan)
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Belgium
Interesting fact(s): There are over 800 kinds of beer made in Belgium and 3 kinds of waffles: Liege, Brussels and Galettes. (Beer and waffles! I’m moving to Belgium)
Player(s) to watch: Vincent Kompany arguably one of the world’s best defenders and Eden Hazard an exciting attacking player.
Predicted finish: Out at quarter finals.

Bosnia and Herzegovina
Interesting fact(s): Has one of the world’s highest unemployment rates.
Player(s) to watch: Asmir Begovic one of the premier league’s best keepers and Edin Dzeko a super sub striker for Manchester City.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Brazil
Interesting fact(s): Brazil is one of the most bio diverse places on the earth.
Player(s) to watch: Again practically the whole team, but my personal favourites are Neymar, Ramires and Oscar.
Predicted finish: Runners up.

Cameroon
Interesting fact(s): Cameroon is the first African country to reach a quarter final in a world cup.
Player(s) to watch: Alexandre Song of Barcelona and Samuel Eto’o possibly one of the best strikers on Pro Evolution soccer ever.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Chile
Interesting fact(s): One of the longest north-south trending countries in the world at over 4,600km and, only 150km wide from west to east.
Player(s) to watch: Arturo Vidal a tough midfielder from Juventus.
Predicted finish: Out in second round.

Colombia
Interesting fact(s): Colombia is a land of extremes, with snow-covered volcanoes, rain forest and deserts.
Player(s) to watch: Although Falcao is injured Jackson Martinez is decent.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Costa Rica
Interesting fact(s): One of the highest life expectancies in the world (77 years)
Player(s) to watch: Keylor Navas is one of the top keepers in the Spanish league, which is good because he will be busy!
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Côte d’Ivoire
Interesting fact(s): One of the largest producers of coffee, cocoa and palm oil.
Player(s) to watch: Yaya Toure who’s been on fire in the premiership this season and his brother Kolo Toure who has also provided some entertainment of another sort (quite a few own goals).
Predicted finish: Out at second round.

Croatia
Interesting fact(s): Dalmation dogs got their name after a South Coastal region in Croatia called Dalmatia.
Player(s) to watch: Luka Modric of Real Madrid.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Ecuador
Interesting fact(s): Guinea pig is considered a delicacy.
Player(s) to watch: Antonio Valencia of Manchester Utd FC.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

England
Interesting fact(s): English computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee is credited with inventing the World Wide Web.
Player(s) to watch: Wayne Rooney apparently, but I’m hoping to see some exciting stuff from the younger players: Raheem Sterling and Ross Barkley.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

France
Interesting fact(s): France is the most visited country in the world.
Player(s) to watch: Quite a few good players but Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema stand out.
Predicted finish: Out at quarter finals.

Germany
Interesting fact(s):Michael Ballack does not like beer!
Player(s) to watch: Practically the whole team, but Manuel Neuer and Bastian Schweinsteiger stand out.
Predicted finish: Out at semi finals.

Ghana
Interesting fact(s): The name Ghana means warrior king.
Player(s) to watch: Sulley Muntari, Asamoah Gyan.
Predicted finish: Out at second round.

Greece
Interesting fact(s): Greece is home to over a dozen world heritage sites.
Player(s) to watch: Orestis Karnezis a sound goal keeper and Kostas Mitroglou a powerful forward.
Predicted finish: Out at second round.

Honduras
Interesting fact(s): Platano forest was nominated as one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.
Player(s) to watch: Carlo Costly a tall striker who uses his strength and aerial prowess to good effect.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Iran
Interesting fact(s): Couples that want a marriage license are required to attend an hour long lecture on contraception.
Player(s) to watch: Ashkan Dejagah of Fulham FC.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Italy
Interesting fact(s): Vatican City and San Marino are very small independent states located inside Italy.
Player(s) to watch: Adrea Pirlo the maestro and Gianluigi Buffon one of the best keepers in the world.
Predicted finish: Out at quarter final.

Japan
Interesting fact(s): Japan is made up of over 6,500 islands.
Player(s) to watch: Keisuke Honda and Shinji Kagawa
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Korea Republic
Interesting fact(s): The taxis are colour coded, white or grey are more basic than black cabs.
Player(s) to watch: Ki Sung-Yeung one of the best passers in the premier league
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Mexico
Interesting fact(s): They have a special Christmas festival to celebrate the radish. (In Oaxaca)
Player(s) to watch: Carlos Pena
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Netherlands
Interesting fact(s): 70% of the worlds bacon comes from the Netherlands
Player(s) to watch: Robben Van Persie who hopefully gets his form back.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Nigeria
Interesting fact(s): One of the oldest locations of human existence.
Player(s) to watch: Sunday Mba who came up with some stunning goals during qualifying
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Portugal
Interesting fact(s): The Portuguese eat more fish and shell fish per head than any other country.
Player(s) to watch: Christiano Ronaldo obviously.
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Russia
Interesting fact(s): In terms of land area Russia is the largest country in the world
Player(s) to watch: Igor Akinfeev
Predicted finish: Out at second round.

Spain
Interesting fact(s): Besides good footballers, Spain produces a large amount of renewable energy including wind power and solar power. Well done Spain!
Player(s) to watch: Just about the whole team, but my favourite is Andres Iniesta mostly because of the resemblance with my brother.
Predicted finish: Third

Switzerland
Interesting fact(s): Swiss women are among the oldest in europe when they have their first child.
Player(s) to watch: Xherdan Shaqiri
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.

Uruguay
Interesting fact(s): It is often known as the heart shaped country.
Player(s) to watch: Luis Suarez a Liverpool FC legend! Also known for attempting to eat the opposition.
Predicted finish: Out at quarter final.

USA
Interesting fact(s): The US has world’s largest economy
Player(s) to watch: Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey
Predicted finish: Out at group stage.