Connecting for the Future

In a recent article on the website, Readwrite, the initiative to turn Singapore into a smart nation by 2025, is discussed. With the merging of two government agencies, Singapore has created IMDA to oversee the evolution of the country into a smart, connected nation. IMDA hopes to use IoT, drone technology, virtual reality, connected grids and other new technologies to bring Singapore to the forefront of the globally connected world. Singapore hopes to leverage its flexible economy, non-bureaucratic business environment, and experience with innovation and technology to accomplish these ambitious goals.

Beefy Boost

In a recent article on the website, The Cattle site, the impact of the U.S. waiting to approve the TPP deal on trade, is discussed. The only country to approve the TPP to date is Malaysia. Since there is no deal in place, tariffs on U.S. exports are extremely high. This is particularly crippling on the agricultural sector, as almost one third of gross agricultural income is through exports. The Japanese and other countries are concerned with what the U.S. will do with regard to the approving the TPP deal and are in a nervous “wait and see” mode. How can U.S. agriculture come out without too much loss? What will the U.S. ultimately do with respect to the proposed TPP deal? How will other countries respond to the U.S.’ actions?

Deal or No Deal?

In a recent article in, The Wall Street Journal, the ratification of the TPP by the involved countries is discussed. Japan is making a strong push to have their parliament ratify the TPP deal to help gain momentum for the deal in the US. Without the support of the US, the deal dies, and President Obama’s support is crucial to the deals ratification before he leaves office in January. The deal would help to open up free trade in the Asia-pacific region and eliminate costly tariffs for all parties, especially Japan. Will the deal get done in time? Will the US government ratify the deal if Japan does? What will be the implications if the deal doesn’t get approved by the 12 members?

Hurting or Helping?

In a recent article on the website,, the newly passed FAA regulations regarding drones is discussed. These new laws are considered to be very strict and address issues of operation over private property and people, line of sight, altitude, and airspeed. With more and more users joining the airspace it has become necessary in recent years for the FAA to regulate this space for the use of drones. How may these new regulations affect the drone industry? Will these laws discourage people from using drones? It what ways will these regulations positively impact the drone industry/community?

The GoPro Karma

In a recent article on the website, The Verge, the announcement of GoPro’s new drone is discussed. GoPro has just released its first ever drone (The Karma) to accompany to of its newest cameras. The Karma allows for the user to have a more connected experience with its camera and the footage that is recorded. With GoPro having its own drone, the user will be able to “stay” on GoPro’s own ecosystem.

Large Grant Awarded to VeHICaL

In a recent article on the website, Berkeley News, the announcement of a $4.6 million grant was discussed. With companies wanting to integrate driver less cars and delivery drones into our society, the need for the safe operation of these machines is paramount. The National Science Foundation has awarded UC Berkeley $4.6 million over five to a group of researchers called VeHICaL, towards researching and improving the human/machine interface. With this grant VeHICaL hopes to find new and improved ways to the manner in which humans and machines interact. How may humans benefit from the interaction with robots? How can drones hurt/help society? How may people be hesitant to adopt this technology?

Rise of The Cattle

In a recent article on the website, Beef Magazine, the idea of managing cattle through the use of drones is discussed. As the use of UAVs becomes more prevalent in our society, developers of this technology are finding more and more applications for its use. Pete Cunningham, with Ag Eagle and Cunningham Ag Services, envisions the use of drones for cattle management. Through the use of ear tags embedded with sensors, a rancher can monitor the health of all his cattle and receive updates on those that most need his attention. The possible benefits include, a huge reduction in time, curbing sickness among the animals, and being able to do more during adverse weather. How easy will this technology be for cattle ranchers to adopt? Will this have any downsides to managing cattle?