From the moment the first television set flickered to life, video has been a powerful tool. The pictures that were worth a thousand words now numbered in the millions themselves, making it easy to see things that were happening anywhere else in the world.
Early home video was grainy and the equipment was ridiculous. Some of you may even have nightmares about adjusting white balance and lugging heavy video cameras on a shoulder strap.
Once digital came along, many of us thought we had reached the apex of advancement, with a simple process to share and copy the videos. Here was a way that we could capture and store all kinds of video at a lower cost and a better quality. Around the same time, there were internet developments that let us share our video as well.
But it still wasn’t enough. We wanted to keep pushing for new ideas and simpler ways to do more.
New Ways To Capture Video
Today’s digital video is shot in every way imaginable. And even though we shoot it as we jump out of an airplane, dive on a coral reef, or even just pull stupid pranks with friends, the quality is leaps and bounds ahead of what professional equipment shot just a few years ago. There are brackets to go on helmets for bicyclists, parachutists, and even firefighters, giving unflinching POV footage that captures real life as it happens.
Of course, no human attachment is even necessary. The use of video drone technology has made it easy to get interesting and detailed shots that were once impossible, grabbing video previously impossible to get without expensive equipment.
Putting Drone Footage To Work
Once drone technology hit the mass market, techies of all kinds quickly saw lots of possibilities.
Geeks in public safety lost their minds over the opportunities. Law enforcement loves being able to send a fairly cheap and quiet unmanned camera into an area where a robbery, hostage situation, or drug transaction is going on and get super-clear HD video.
While some uses are still controversial, others are less problematic. Firefighters can check on chemical spills and large forest fires, and people who are lost in the woods are being tracked down with remarkable speed, saving lives along with tons of time and money.
Sports geeks saw opportunities as well. Much of what happened in sports was driven by cable-drawn cameras already in use in the NFL. These units were drawn out over the field of play, showing the fans exactly what the players saw. Those are still being used today. While drones are still not being used in sports for live action, they are being used for things like sports filmmaking and story-telling. The producers of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, have plans to use drones to cover things like the opening ceremonies and for promotional footage.
Drones Go To Hollywood
It’s no surprise that with all these cool options for shooting video, Hollywood has taken notice. When a director can go on YouTube and see a shot that’s ten times cooler than his last film, he’s not going to let it go. Since 2012, drones have really played a big part in the movies, capturing angles and locations that would have been way too expensive or difficult before.
And what movie was an early user of drone technology? No surprise–it was a James Bond movie. The franchise is as well-known for its gadgets as it is for its cackling villains and beautiful women. The chase scene in Skyfall was shot using drone technology, capturing Bond and the bad guys on motorcycles darting through city streets (and across rooftops) in a way that would have previously required countless additional cameras, costly helicopters, or a year’s worth of work in CGI to just fake the whole thing. The results were so good that CGI often got kicked to the curb to favor drones.
The Harry Potter films, which were a bonanza of green-screen work, took on drones for one of their scenes, and The Wolf of Wall Street captured a sweeping approach to the Hamptons, site of the party scene, dramatically setting the mood for the cocaine-dusted excess taking place inside. In the end, the progression of drone technology means more and more ways that we can use them for entertainment and information, and it makes for a very exciting future.
This post was written by Shah, a professional writer and blogger interested in writing about various aspects of SEO, marketing, tech and design on Designermag.org. You can join Shah at Google+or Twitter.