A.I.-controlled helicopter: Seriously, need I say more?

An A.I.-controlled helicopter demonstrates its stuff at Stanford.

Stanford helicopters
Stanford scientists gloat over their incredible accomplishment and how insignificant my own have been...maybe. Stanford News Service

On Monday, a 4-foot-long helicopter equipped with an artificial-intelligence system developed by computer scientists at Stanford University flew over the campus, according to Reuters. The helicopter had taught itself to fly by watching the aerobatics of a radio-controlled helicopter flown by a human. Also on Monday, I got my Warlock to level 66 in World of Warcraft. Yeah, I think I need to reevaluate my priorities.

The self-controlled mini-hopper performed flips, rolls, pirouettes, stall-turns, knife-edges, and an inverted hover over a field. Adam Coates, a Ph.D. student who worked on the project, said the machines can fly maneuvers at the edge of what real helicopters are capable of.

Each helicopter costs about $4,000 to build. A number of companies that are hoping to use the A.I. for surveillance and mapping applications have contacted the research group.

Check out a couple of videos here.

About the author

Eric Franklin is a section editor covering how to and tablets. He's also co-host of CNET's do-it-yourself and how-to show, The Fix and is a 20-year tech industry veteran.

 

Join the discussion

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Show Comments Hide Comments
Latest Galleries from CNET
Uber's tumultuous ups and downs in 2014 (pictures)
The best and worst quotes of 2014 (pictures)
A roomy range from LG (pictures)
This plain GE range has all of the essentials (pictures)
Sony's 'Interview' heard 'round the world (pictures)
Google Lunar XPrize: Testing Astrobotic's rover on the rocks (pictures)