You can’t avoid reading news about drones these days and it’s not always favourable coverage. You’d be forgiven for thinking that quadcopters are a modern invention but actually the first one ever invented was in 1920. It was a piloted craft invented by Etienne Omnichen and it made over 1000 successful flights. This was the forerunner for it’s unmanned relatives that are taking photography and videography to new heights today.
The first commonly acknowledged use of the word ‘drone’ was in 1936 where remote controlled airplanes were used for target practice in the US navy and that’s pretty much where they stayed until the 1960s where the use of unpiloted aircraft for various purposes became more popular. Of course it is in the last decade when the full potential of these light and agile flying machines has begun to be realised and they can really offer some exciting new opportunities, but it’s interesting to know how far back their roots stretch.