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iPhone-Controlled Helicopter With AR Games 51

andylim writes "Parrot has unveiled a remote-controlled helicopter that boasts augmented reality games. The helicopter is controlled using an iPhone or iPod Touch's accelerometer and touchscreen. There's a camera on the front of the helicopter, which you can use to navigate and to play augmented reality games, including a game that involves fighting a gigantic robot."
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iPhone-Controlled Helicopter With AR Games

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  • Re:An iPod? (Score:3, Informative)

    by LordVader717 ( 888547 ) on Wednesday January 06, 2010 @06:15AM (#30667378)

    Stability is mainly a problem for small, toy-sized craft. Another reason why multiple rotors are used is so that they can cancel out each others torque, so you don't need a tail-rotor. Personal aircraft similar to what you described have been made like these
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VZ-1_Pawnee [wikipedia.org]
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SoloTrek_XFV [wikipedia.org]

    They obviously don't run on batteries. I don't know what the largest battery-powered craft ever made is, but even for model planes they were totally impractical just a few years ago.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 06, 2010 @06:23AM (#30667422)


    I'm the boss of the company which created the computer vision software embedded in the drone, and also the Augmented Reality game demo on the iPhone.

    You can check it out here :

    I have to post it here, 'cause they don't seem to credit us for our hard work...

  • Re:Video Latency (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 06, 2010 @06:41AM (#30667534)

    My company worked on this project as an external contractor.

    We've done the AR software embedded in the drone, as well as the Robot Fighting demo on the iPhone.

    I can say that for the moment the video stream is not perfect, and quite annoying for a quality AR experience.

    But this project will not be sold until several months, I hope it will be improved.

  • Re:Video Latency (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 06, 2010 @07:12AM (#30667684)

    The video stream is processed on the drone before being sent to the iPhone.

    The pose estimation (3D matrices) is sent along the navigation and control data.

    We also hope to see more AR games on the iPhone, but currently Apple is locking the real time video processing...

    But there are other AR capable devices out there :)

    You can see some demos of our work on our blog :


    and here


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