Wednesday, April 01, 2015

The Flying Sheepdog

At last, someone has found a practical real-world use for drones: a farmer in Ireland uses one to herd sheep

Like the smartwatch, the much-heralded drone is one of those gadgets that we are told, time and again, is going to transform our lives.

Before long, the boffins would have us believe, our groceries, Amazon orders and even pizza will be delivered by these little unmanned mini-choppers, while police will be able to keep a beady eye on potential criminals with buzzing eyes-in-the-sky.

And that's not to mention the more serious applications in the pipeline, from disaster relief to monitoring severe weather.

But until now, outside of a war zone we've seen little evidence that drones are catching on. Possibly because the darn things are so difficult to fly.

However, a farmer in Ireland seems to have hit upon a genuinely successful real-world use for the remote-controlled quadcopter. Christening his drone Shep, Paul Brennan from Carlow has discovered that drones are remarkably good at herding sheep.

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