Unmanned Aerial Storytelling

Unmanned Aerial Storytelling

It used to be difficult to put eyes in the sky. But things are changing rapidly. From balloons, to DIY drones, pro quadcopters, and high resolution imagery from satellites orbiting Earth – we will explore how the fields of storytelling, journalism, and conservation are being transformed from above. These technologies are more accessible than you may think. In this class, students will investigate the regulations, technologies, and practice of drones for storytelling. Students will gain a conceptual understanding of this space through programming toy drones, and by designing and participating in a drone storytelling feature. Students will also learn how aerial imagery can be used in innovative and interactive forms of media.

Happier Valley Rough Cut

May 2, 2016

We edited the video in two parts: the first part is here and the second part is here

The first part is about the history of Disneyland, from the first sound animation Mickey Mouse and Steamboat to the first Disneyland in Los Angeles, from that to Shanghai. There should be a transition between two parts, an overview of current Disneyland with drone but we haven’t got satisfied footage yet. The second part is our interviews. We first interviewed people around Disneyland to show their excitement and then, citizens living nearby.

Paper Edit

Apr 22, 2016

Shanghai Disneyland Paper Edit

Our team, Prudence, Harry and Ada, discussed and decided the voiceover and views together. Ada did some research, responsbile for integrating news reports and clips from other documentaries about Disney. Prudence gave some creative ideas about the visuals like putting six Disneyland together and then zooming into Shanghai. Harry wrote the draft voiceover.

Group Project Proposal

Apr 15, 2016

working title of the project
Back Side of Disneyland
team members
Ada Harry Prudence
synopsis (you can draw from your seven line stories for this)
Once upon a time, the first Disneyland was established with the effort of Walt Disney. With the growing GDP in China, Disney noticed the huge potential in the Chinese market and decided to have the sixth Disneyland in Pudong, Shanghai.Every day, we can see the Disneyland grows a little bit from the satellite images. We are all excited to watch such a big construction until one day, we heard from people living nearby saying that their old neighbors are now far away from them in tall apartments. Disney workers may think that this project is fantastic to bring the Disney spirit into mainland China, that is love, friendship and family. However, with what we hear with the citizens, we realized that it sacrifices others’ home to build this dream land that also stresses the importance of family.
estimated length & format
estimated time:
1 min – Disneyland History
2 min – Shanghai Disneyland Construction
1 min – citizen interview
1 min – Disney staff interview
1 min – ending with two separate locations
format:
documentary
intended audience
Disney fans, Shanghaineses, lover of politics
sources of research
YouTube videos about disneyland
Sample interviews
News
Data of Disneyland
assets to be collected / created (be as specific as possible)
One drone
Camera
Tripod
Light
Recorder
rough production timeline (please include dates and milestones)
April 15– April 17 – script writing and research
April 17 – Discussion after class
April 15 – April 22 – try to find a Disney staff to talk and interview
April 23 Get to the spot, get some footage, neighbors interview
April 30 – May 2 – Get all the materials for the fianl video
May 7 – May 8 – cutting and editing

Short answers for top 3 preferences

Apr 11, 2016

Shanghai Disneyland (documentary; reflecting on the local/global impact of the park)
Part 1
Once upon a time, the first Disneyland was established with the effort of Walt Disney. With the growing GDP in China, Disney noticed the huge potential in the Chinese market and decided to have the sixth Disneyland in Pudong, Shanghai.Every day, we can see the Disneyland grows a little bit from the satellite images. We are all excited to watch such a big construction until one day, we heard from people living nearby saying that their old neighbors are now far away from them in tall apartments. At that time, we realized that it sacrifices others’ home to build this dream land that also stresses the importance of family.
Part 2
Satellite images from Google maps, Baidu maps and any other possible ways to form a timeline
Aerial videos from YouTube
Interviews of Disney staff
Part 3
Observation mode for the growing of Disneyland day by day
Expository mode for the relocation part

Pollution reduction (documentary; investigating efforts to address smog & pollution)
Part 1
The story begins with the blue sky that we used to have back to 2000s. We keep building more factories to make more money until one day we realized that we are losing the blue sky. It is followed by this picture f31013f7de2aebf4edc46f732ea6085f (1), which shows the amount of blue skies directly. People start to wear masks through the entire winter. Then we realized the sacrifices of the development of economy. Since then, we are trying to reduce pollution with new energry by shooting the wind farm.
Part 2
The documentary by CHAI Jing, Under the Dome
Part 3
Observation. I feel like this documentary is totally fine only with background music.

Taxi vs. Uber drivers (documentary; exploring the lives of drivers and recent changes)
Part 1
Taxi is a relatively traditional transportation mean in Shanghai. However, recent years, the drivers started to refuse customers’ request if they are going to a far place. In order to meet the need, Uber came into China market. Here shows the Uber commercial that stresses its mission and advantages. Uber drivers can go to work as normal but use their own cars to meet the huge demand when they are off work. The video can then focuses on a daily life of a taxi driver who is always on the way and a Uber driver who only drives in his spare time.
Part 2
Interviews of drivers
Uber Commercials
Part 3
Performative may be interesting. We can seperate the screen into two parts, one for taxi one for Uber (if the driver also goes to work) to stress the differences. If we can put a small map on the bottom right which shows the current location of that car, it would be very interesting.

Drone Programming

Mar 31, 2016

On the second class, Professor Ben introduced a cool API that can make the drone autonomy. I tried some basic functions like take off, turn, move ahead and landing. Then I added an animation function just as what Ben did in class. However, the outcome seemed to be different. I think the battery is fully charged because when I unplugged it, the light is green. Besides that, I didn’t see an obvious clockwise(0.5) movement and the move.front is moving front-right actually. I don’t know the reason.
Please check the video below.

Here is the code.
var arDrone = require('ar-drone');
var client = arDrone.createClient();
client.takeoff();
client
.after(3000, function(){
this.up(1);
})
.after(2000, function(){
this.animate('flipAhead', 300);
this.stop();
})
.after(2000, function(){
this.clockwise(0.5);
})
.after(2000, function(){
this.front(1);
this.stop();
})
.after(2000, function(){
this.animate('flipLeft', 500);
})
.after(3000, function() {
this.stop();
this.land();
});

I also tried the examples->png-stream.js. I tried to integrate it with the code above but then, the localhost:8080 says it is not connected. I am still trying other functions and the ARdrone-autonomy.

A Shanghai Disneyland Documentary

Mar 28, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 11.31.38 PM
Since I am a big fan of Disney but won’t be able to witness its grand opening in June, I would like to make a documentary about Shanghai Disneyland to make up for my absence.
For big constructions, the biggest problem is to relocate residents who used to live in this area. The Three Gorges Dam project relocated about 1.2 million people, so how about Disneyland in Shanghai?
Three Gorges Dam Relocation
The documentary will start with some satellite images from Baidu Maps and Google Maps(maybe more if I can find them) to show how things changed from time to time. Here are some examples:
This is the screen shot from Baidu Maps.
Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 11.31.22 PM
As you can see clearly, there isn’t any clue about the Disneyland. All we can tell from the image is the general ground and some buildings. The problem is that I can’t tell when is this satellite image updated from Baidu Maps. I am looking for other ways to specify the time.
The stallite maps on Google is more updated.
Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 11.32.00 PM
Now, you can tell the castle in the center of this image and the sector area.
Then, I wanna take a video by myself on how the Disneyland looks like now. How is the area nearby looks like. Does it still remain as countryside?
I would like to interview some people, either officers in Disneyland or people who still live near Disneyland because their neighbors may have to leave due to this construction. It is said that some foreign Disney staff live in the same community as our in Jinqiao. If so, that would be very easy to talk to them. I want to ask them how they feel about forcing people to live their home because of their project. I want to ask the residents nearby whether their life is changed because of this big project and what they think about it. Does it bring them opportunities and money or it only annoys them.
In the end, I want the drone to pass by the roller coaster, the fake mountain, the castle and so on because this will be a unique angle from above in the sky.

Advertisements