Eno Umoh was a drone hobbyist who, in 2015, decided to turn his passion into a profession. He co-founded Global Air Media, a company offering drone aerial photography, mapping, disaster aid and STEM programming for youth.
“It’s a new technology,” Umoh said, at “The Long Conversation” last December. “A whole lot of people haven’t explored the full uses of it yet, the practicality of drones. A lot of people when they see drones they think ‘oh, it’s nice pictures and nice video,’ but we like to take it a step further and really relate it to practical issues.”
How can we use drones for public safety? Could we use them to deliver prescriptions to senior citizens living in cities, who normally need to trek blocks to a pharmacy?
Gabby Rivera, the award-winning writer of Juliet Takes a Breath and the Marvel Comics series “America,” interviewed Umoh at the Smithsonian event, which brought together 25 thinkers for an eight-hour relay of two-person dialogues at the Arts & Industries Building in Washington, D.C. The two innovators spoke about how Global Air Media, through workshops in schools and camps, allows kids to build drones—from soldering to working with circuit boards, motors and LED lights. The goal, in Umoh’s words, is to “teach the good uses of drones.”
While there are some negative critiques of the technology, particularly in regards to privacy issues, Umoh believes there are more positive uses of drones than negative. “When you really start to see what technology can do to help your lives,” he added, “that’s what we’re on the cusp of and that’s what keeps this exciting work.”
Mark your calendars for this year’s “Long Conversation,” which will bring an impressive group of scientists, musicians, inventors, tech CEOs and others together on December 7, 2018. Watch it on livestream here.