Speed Reads

game of drones

The Air Force is making pocket-sized surveillance drones

The Air Force is funding a project to design and build pocket-sized drones called "Extreme Access Pocket Flyers." The miniature hexacopters will offer 360-degree camera views, and the drones will be used for difficult search and rescue operations in which a driving robot is impractical.

However, the drones' developers see much wider applications than rescue efforts — a potential cause for concern to civil liberties advocates. "Just like a camera, the best drone is the one you have with you. The market potential is one for every soldier, marine, police officer, SWAT team member, and many other jobs that expose people to danger," said Helen Greiner, the CEO of CyPhy Works, the contractor responsible for development.