Friday, 13 January 2012

Objective Proficiency p 105. A great catch.

Does anyone know what a DJI Phantom is? Can you guess?

Predict the story with these phrases:

An aerial video
A safety feature
An automatic landing
A GPS (Global Positioning System)

Answer these questions:
1. Is this a hobby that anyone here is interested in – making drone aerial videos ?
2.Can you guess how much a drone like this would cost?
3. There’s something important that isn’t included in the price. Can you guess what it is?
4. Imagine this: you are flying a drone and the battery dies. What do you think would happen?

2. (Answer: between 500 € and 1500 € )

3. (Answer: the video camera. Other guesses may include: the remote control; the battery.)

4. (Answer: the DJI Phantom has a safety feature . The drone will make an automatic landing just before the battery dies. A GPS inside the drone will guide it back to the same spot where it took off from.) 

Story text 
Part one
Drone arial videos are becoming more and more popular these days. Perhaps you’ve seen some on YouTube – bird’s-eye views of urban landscapes and city landmarks for example.
 For amateur enthusiasts , the DJI Phantom is a popular model. A drone from the DJI Phantom series can cost anything from between 500 € and 1500 € . That’s quite an expensive piece of equipment and it doesn’t include the video camera.
Have you ever wondered what would happen if the battery died while the drone was in flight? Well, the DJI Phantom has a safety feature . Just before this happens, the drone will make an automatic landing. A GPS (Global Positioning System) inside the machine will guide it back to the same spot where it took off from. Clever, no? What could go possibly wrong?

Constructing a narrative
I have a story for you which involves a drone. It takes place in the Netherlands and it involves the following:
A cold day in December
An amateur drone aerial video enthusiast
A ditch filled with ice-cold water
Fully clothed
Over 4 million views

A ditch : a long hole beside a road or a field that water goes into. Note that in the Netherlands, ditches can be very wide and deep!
Google maps:

An enthusiast : someone who is passionate about something (a hobby, for example)
Fully clothed : If someone is fully clothed, they have all of their clothes on.

Now I want you to work together to guess what you think happens in the story. It doesn’t matter if you are right or if you are wrong. This is speaking activity. I want you to share ideas and construct a narrative. Consider all of the details!

Story text 
Part two 
It’s a cold day in December. A young Dutch man called Zwier goes out with a group of friends to test his new DJI Phantom drone. He places it in the middle of a quiet road. It takes off vertically and Zwier flies it above the houses, the trees, the roads and the canals.
After about 15 minutes however, Zwier has a problem: the battery starts to die and the drone begins to make an automatic landing. But instead of landing on the road, the drone slowly starts to come down above a water-filled ditch . The problem is that Zwier didn’t set the GPS correctly!
The ditch is wide and deep and the drone is going to land right in the middle of it. Zwier has no choice. He runs to the ditch and jumps in, fully clothed. The ice-cold water comes up to his waist.
Zwier moves to the centre of the ditch as quickly as he can, desperate to catch the drone before it lands in the water. The water gets deeper and deeper as he goes: up to his chest, up to his neck and then up to his chin.
The drone is just centimetres from the surface. With all his effort, Zwier reaches out his arms and makes a heroic one-handed catch. He spits out a mouthful of water and smiles. His friends cheer and applaud him.
Zwier’s heroic catch was caught on camera – the camera attached to the drone that he saved! He puts the video on YouTube and within weeks, it is viewed over 4 million times.

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