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Artist turns deceased tabby into cat-copter

Warning: Some readers may find the following story disconcerting. An artist turns his dearly departed cat into a flying quadrocopter cat.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
The Orvillecopter takes flight. Video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

Bart Jansen had two cats, named Orville and Wilbur, after the famous flying Wright brothers of Kitty Hawk. When dear Orville passed away, the visual artist and designer created a new kind of Kitty Hawk.

The Orvillecopter is a quadrocopter with Orville's skin stretched over it. Orville was killed by a car, Jansen mourned, and then he went about concocting a tribute.

I have mixed feelings about this unusual project. I have three cats of my own that have moonlighted as CNET technology testers. The techie side of me admires the ingenuity. The cat lover in is saddened by the sight of Orville splayed out in his new form.

As Jansen says in his video description, the cat hide is really pretty much the same as a piece of leather from a cow. It's just that we have so much emotional investment in our pets.

Orville will never be consigned to anything so mundane as merely pushing up the daisies. He's now taking flight, sharing the sky with the birdies he was so fond of watching. It's a strange tribute, but perhaps not an entirely inappropriate one.

The video below shows the Orvillecopter in action, taking the former cat into places and spaces previously reserved for the birds.

(Via NPR)