How many hours have you, when you were younger, and your children now spent sitting at the computer or game console with a joy stick in hand flying some on screen plane or space ship? You probably didn’t think about this a preparation for the hot job of the future, but it has turned out to be just that.
Futurist Thomas Frey, in his book Communicating with the Future, says the day of the drone is on us. We have seen a great deal of press on the use of drones by the military but there is a rapidly increasing use of drones in the private sector and other government sectors. Frey says we will soon see some version of this help wanted ad:
Help wanted: Full-time aerial drone drivers needed to help manage our growing fleet of surveillance, delivery, and communication drones. We are also looking for drone repair techs, drone dispatchers, and drone salesmen.”
We will forgive Mr. Frey his non-HR correct ad, but he is very correct in this being an impending job category. There are an ever increasing number of companies that are creating and selling drone technology.
Some of the industries that will make use of drone technology include:
- Cruise ship communication– from what I understand most cell phone service is poor on cruise ships once they have gotten out of U.S. waters. What if communication drones flew above the ships on a constant basis providing cell phone connectivity?
- Communication over land– Drones with cell phone connectivity capability could eliminate the irritating “dead spots” in cell phone communication. You would not have to rely on towers.
- Lighting drones– How about concerts, movie sets, political rallies all being lighted from above by drones? Strobe drones could provide special effects. You could even have drones dropping fireworks from the sky instead of having to shoot them into the sky?
- Advertising– Ever get annoyed by an airplane pulling a banner? What if you had a drone with electronic advertising?
- Firefighting drones– The forest fire situation could be significantly altered by having a fleet of drones with heat sensitive cameras and sensors looking for hot spots. Once spotted a fire could be extinguished by drones equipped to put the fire out before it got to be any size.
- Photography drones– Some photographers today hire full size planes to do aerial photography. Much of that could be replaced by having a camera drone make that flight more cheaply and more often.
Other drone possibilities include environmental monitoring, weather drones, search and rescue drones.
In reality we are only going to be limited by our imagination in how drones are going to be used. As a result a lot of people are going to need the skills needed to assemble, fly, repair, maintain and sell this equipment.
Hmmm… I wonder how my joystick skills have held up?
Photo credit: Nicolas Halftermeyer Under Creative Common License