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Kayak test

LivinLarge

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A quick test to see if the Skydio 2 will recognize and orbit a kayaker. This was using just the phone without the beacon. Will test on the water soon.
 

scrampker

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That has to be the absolute worst-case scenario of trying to launch/catch the S2 :) I assume you will not be filming yourself in the kayak, but curious about your tactic. I've wanted to get a bit more adventurous, myself. Like cliff-jumping with waterproof bag on the Beacon. I'm a tad worried the drone might decide to go for a swim though.
 

LivinLarge

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I wanted to first confirm that Skydio would recognize a kayaker as a target, since so much of your form is covered up by the kayak, sprayskirt, lifejacket and helmet. Next, I will test in on flatwater in a lake. just paddling around, launching and landing. Then I will take it on some easy whitewater before going big.
The hardest part will be safely landing it without getting out of the kayak. It should be easy enough to track other kayakers. Tracking yourself will be much riskier. You may not notice as you are running a big rapid, that the Skydio has lost you or gotten trapped behind an overhanging tree. You can't paddle back up most rapids to retrieve it.
 

scrampker

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I wanted to first confirm that Skydio would recognize a kayaker as a target, since so much of your form is covered up by the kayak, sprayskirt, lifejacket and helmet. Next, I will test in on flatwater in a lake. just paddling around, launching and landing. Then I will take it on some easy whitewater before going big.
The hardest part will be safely landing it without getting out of the kayak. It should be easy enough to track other kayakers. Tracking yourself will be much riskier. You may not notice as you are running a big rapid, that the Skydio has lost you or gotten trapped behind an overhanging tree. You can't paddle back up most rapids to retrieve it.
Ouch, yeah, and the range is so bad that you will be screwed in that sense, big time. If you had some sort of waterproof phone mount, you could get the drone footage up there and avoid this to a certain degree, however.
 

LivinLarge

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Ouch, yeah, and the range is so bad that you will be screwed in that sense, big time. If you had some sort of waterproof phone mount, you could get the drone footage up there and avoid this to a certain degree, however.
Flying with the beacon alone would not work well here. You cannot back up the drone, only go forward or turn. A phone would be a necessity.
 
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skydioconvert

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Flying with the beacon alone would not work well here. You cannot back up the drone, only go forward or turn. A phone would be a necessity.
Not being able to make the S2 backup when solely using the beacon is a subtle point that Skydio really needs to mention.

If they're not able to fix that shortcoming via a future software fix they should at least draw attention to it maybe through a future flight school video.
 

LivinLarge

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Not being able to make the S2 backup when solely using the beacon is a subtle point that Skydio really needs to mention.

If they're not able to fix that shortcoming via a future software fix they should at least draw attention to it maybe through a future flight school video.
I agree. Maybe they could come up with a two button combination or double tap that would make it back up. I think is is a critical shortcoming that needs to be addressed. When Skydio gets stuck, it needs to be able to back up. If you spin it around, with just the beacon, you have no way of telling which way it is pointed.
 

Lifeisfun

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I wanted to first confirm that Skydio would recognize a kayaker as a target, since so much of your form is covered up by the kayak, sprayskirt, lifejacket and helmet. Next, I will test in on flatwater in a lake. just paddling around, launching and landing. Then I will take it on some easy whitewater before going big.
The hardest part will be safely landing it without getting out of the kayak. It should be easy enough to track other kayakers. Tracking yourself will be much riskier. You may not notice as you are running a big rapid, that the Skydio has lost you or gotten trapped behind an overhanging tree. You can't paddle back up most rapids to retrieve it.
Skydio does not recognise boats (confirmed with support) It will only recognise person on board.
 

LivinLarge

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Skydio does not recognise boats (confirmed with support) It will only recognise person on board.
I was aware of that. I was not sure how much of the person had to be visible for Skydio to understand it as a target. I did not know the criteria. Does it have to see a face, head and shoulders, full body shape? I have not found videos of kayakers with Skydio 2. Also I have concerns about crashing through waves with the kayak in whitewater, where you disappear for seconds. Will Skydio lose track of you?
These are the things I need to confirm before taking it down a big whitewater river.
 

skydioconvert

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Differentiating between people and other objects in a video stream is something that also recently challenged engineers at another company I've been following.

Anyone interested in how they solved this problem should check out their link
 

Lifeisfun

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I was aware of that. I was not sure how much of the person had to be visible for Skydio to understand it as a target. I did not know the criteria. Does it have to see a face, head and shoulders, full body shape? I have not found videos of kayakers with Skydio 2. Also I have concerns about crashing through waves with the kayak in whitewater, where you disappear for seconds. Will Skydio lose track of you?
These are the things I need to confirm before taking it down a big whitewater river.
 
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LivinLarge

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I went to a nearby lake today with the kayak and Skydio. Used the Beacon and a phone. Skydio found the beacon by GPS but would not see me as a trackable object in the kayak. The Beacon lost contact with Skydio after a few minutes. I had it in the front pocket of my life jacket. Had to get out of the boat reconnect and land.
 

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Lifeisfun

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I went to a nearby lake today with the kayak and Skydio. Used the Beacon and a phone. Skydio found the beacon by GPS but would not see me as a trackable object in the kayak. The Beacon lost contact with Skydio after a few minutes. I had it in the front pocket of my life jacket. Had to get out of the boat reconnect and land.
Yeah, the beacon must be in line of sight or it will disconnect, happens to me all the time :(
 

Ridefreak

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That doesn't seem all that much different then when mine follows me riding a motorcycle, difference being half your body is down in the hull but the object size is similar. On the water the subject should appear as an object against a flat relatively even surface.

The beacon doesn't automatically loose lock when the subject disappears. What it will sometimes do is lock onto another similar subject when they re-appear. I've got videos showing this. I think the point is you want it to track using GPS rather than visual if there's any chance you'll disappear for a short time. I'm not sure how to force that but almost every time I launch it's using GPS tracking as indicated by the big blue brackets around the subject and GPS Tracking on the phone screen. I'm using the beacon but I connect the phone to see what's going on. It could be because I'm on a motorcycle, I don't know, I don't select anything different when launching.

 

LivinLarge

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That doesn't seem all that much different then when mine follows me riding a motorcycle, difference being half your body is down in the hull but the object size is similar. On the water the subject should appear as an object against a flat relatively even surface.

The beacon doesn't automatically loose lock when the subject disappears. What it will sometimes do is lock onto another similar subject when they re-appear. I've got videos showing this. I think the point is you want it to track using GPS rather than visual if there's any chance you'll disappear for a short time. I'm not sure how to force that but almost every time I launch it's using GPS tracking as indicated by the big blue brackets around the subject and GPS Tracking on the phone screen. I'm using the beacon but I connect the phone to see what's going on. It could be because I'm on a motorcycle, I don't know, I don't select anything different when launching.

The app did show the big blue brackets indicating GPS lock on the beacon, but it was off a bit. It was a few feet to one side from where the beacon was actually located, so I was not centered in the view. Having the beacon in my lifejacket pocket, close to my body may have caused it to lose signal. Being down at water level with mountains all around made for weak GPS.
This was disappointing since it seemed to work well in my backyard. There, I had on an orange and jacket which may have made me more visible.
 

LivinLarge

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Testing some more methods of landing Skydio from a kayak.
 

Ridefreak

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The app did show the big blue brackets indicating GPS lock on the beacon, but it was off a bit. It was a few feet to one side from where the beacon was actually located, so I was not centered in the view. Having the beacon in my lifejacket pocket, close to my body may have caused it to lose signal. Being down at water level with mountains all around made for weak GPS.
This was disappointing since it seemed to work well in my backyard. There, I had on an orange and jacket which may have made me more visible.
How far did you go forward when the camera was centered off to the side. I often have to move a little ways for it to come around and get settled into the position I selected.
 

LivinLarge

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How far did you go forward when the camera was centered off to the side. I often have to move a little ways for it to come around and get settled into the position I selected.
I did not move forward. I was expecting to get a visual lock, then the beacon lost connection so I got out of the kayak and gave up.
 

Ridefreak

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That's wierd, I don't think I've seen mine do that, it launches spins around then acquires the subject, I'm watching this on the phone but I don't do anything button-wise until that's over. I'm wondering if it's having a hard time because you're 1/2 inside the Kayak at that time. If your standing out of the Kayak, does it acquire you normally?
 

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