Intel is in the drone business. It is, of course, in many other businesses, but on Nov. 4, the company released a video showing a fleet of 500 drones creating an illuminated display under the control of a single operator. Besides requiring regulatory relief from aviation authorities, the demonstration required that the 500 individual computers work as a unit. The drones had become a single compute platform.
The idea that drones might be a compute platform used by industry, civil authorities, and entertainment companies is new but some would consider it inevitable, since drones have long been thought of as part of the Internet of Things. Anil Nanduri is one who does think of drones as a compute platform and he's the subject of this episode of InformationWeek's Expert Voice.
Anil V. Nanduri is vice president in the new technology group and general manager of unmanned aviation systems for the Perceptual Computing Group at Intel Corporation. He's responsible for Intel's unmanned aviation systems business. Nanduri initially joined Intel in 1997 as a chipset design engineer. His contributions to Intel's mobile platforms have earned him three Intel Achievement Awards.
The Intel Shooting Star, the drone shown in the mass-flight demonstration, is a platform that was purpose-built for aerial displays. In the interview, Nanduri talked about purpose-built platforms, as well as platforms with broader applications. He also explained the role that software plays in drone control, both for individual and mass drone operations.
IT professionals might initially wonder what drones have to do with their work, but Nanduri makes it clear that the technology developed for drones and the lessons learned in its application will have an impact on every business that's touched by the Internet of Things.