So you want to log all your drone flights? Good on you!
Here’s the next drone purchase you’ll need to make (that won’t cost an arm and a leg). It’s not some fancy gadget either. It’s a ‘drone logbook,’ and it comes in the form of free smart phone app or tangible notebook.
Why should you log your flights?
It’s a place to store important information — what drone you were using, flight type, location and maintenance concerns.
And if you are flying drones commercially, in the U.S. and many other countries, it’s the law. Commercial operators who have 333 exemptions and “blanket” COAs (Certificate of Waiver or Authorization) are required to file reports with the Federal Aviation Administration
And if — like me — you aren’t a commercial drone operator, it’s just sort of fun to see where you have flown, for how long, and document everything that happened for each flight.
Dan Held more or less fits the mold of your Silicon Valley entrepreneur.
He always want to fly model planes as a kid, but they were just too expensive. He speaks with a barely noticeable Texas “y’all.” He moved to San Francisco, where his full-time job is with a bitcoin startup. That’s on-top of a bursting resume of other startups and mobile apps that he created in his free-time.
His San Francisco apartment is filled with two DJI Phantoms, some cheap toy drones and homemade FPV racing drones. The FPV drones belong to his roommate, Kevin Johnson, a software developer. Held says his roommate is the reason his latest startup, Hover, exists.
“Kevin bought a Phantom II Vision+,” Held said. “We take it out usually on weekends to Golden Gate Park and do loops around the racing field.”
But they noticed things missing when they flew: a timer to know how long you had been flying. Weather data. News. Knowledge of whether or not you can legally fly in that area.
“We really liked drones, but there wasn’t an app filling our needs,” Held said.
Like most business deals in the Silicon Valley startup world begin, the two roommates, Held and Johnson, merged their skill sets. Johnson is the engineer, and Held is the marketing, design and “idea” guy.