The “missing” signs on telephone poles aren’t just for the furry set anymore. These days, a robotic friend is as likely to wander off as a four-footed one.
In May, a “missing drone” flyer popped up in Silicon Valley. This weekend, a Forbes reader spotted this “missing” sign on a telephone pole near the beach in San Diego’s affluent Del Mar neighborhood. Faithfully mimicking one you might see for a beloved mutt, it includes a generic photo of the Heli-max quadcopter, a description of the drone (“gray and green”), a promise of a reward, a number to call, and a name written alongside the photo: “Poseidon.” The missing device does not actually have its own name though. “That’s just the name of the restaurant where I hoped they’d bring the drone,” says Roy Loon, the drone’s erstwhile owner, who has not yet recovered it.
Loon, who works as a handyman for a nearby hotel, liked to take his drone to the beach at lunch to fly it. Loon says he’s not especially tech-savvy. A month ago, while flying the copter, he meant “to hit the return button but hit some other button and it took off.” (The Heli-max 1Si quadcopter has a “return to pilot” button to auto-fly itself back to the operator.) He says he was in a blind spot behind a lifeguard station and couldn’t see where it went. He posted a bunch of signs trying to get the “stupid $120 thing” back, but I was the first to actually call him.
Alan is serial entrepreneur, active angel investor, and a drone enthusiast. He co-founded DRONELIFE.com to address the emerging commercial market for drones and drone technology. Prior to DRONELIFE.com, Alan co-founded Where.com, ThinkingScreen Media, and Nurse.com. Recently, Alan has co-founded Crowditz.com, a leader in Equity Crowdfunding Data, Analytics, and Insights. Alan can be reached at alan(at)dronelife.com