Dutchman Flies with Bird Wings
I thought I had seen it all. Apparently, I have not and I can expect more surprises as I get older. There is a Dutch mechanical engineer who goes by the name Jarno Smeets. I am sure his friends have a nickname for him like “Bird Man” or “Hawk” or “Eagle Man” at the local pub; but, I digress. He has proved with enough determination, ingenuity and an Android driven HTC Wildfire smart-phone, Nintendo Wii remote and motor output (sheesh), a man can fly like a bird!
He used the above-mentioned configuration to process parameters like arm acceleration transposed to motorized wing flaps and calculate motor output. What Jarno accomplished is truly amazing and I am sure he has a spot in the Guinness Book of Records. I am sure the military is licking their lips at possible applications for modern warfare.
Should we really be surprised? There is nothing new under the Sun. Do you remember the story of Daedalus? Well read this excerpt:
When the Minotaur was born, Daedalus built the Labyrinth to contain the monstrous half-man, half-bull. For years Minos demanded a tribute of youths from Athens to feed the creature. Eventually, the hero Theseus came to Crete to attempt to slay the Minotaur. Ariadne, daughter of Minos and Pasiphae, fell in love with Theseus and asked Daedalus to help him. Daedalus gave her a flaxen thread for Theseus to tie to the door of the Labyrinth as he entered, and by which he could find his way out after killing the monster. Theseus succeeded, and escaped Crete with Ariadne. Minos, enraged at the loss of his daughter, shut Daedalus and his son Icarus into the Labyrinth.
To escape, Daedalus built wings for himself and Icarus. They successfully flew from Crete, but Icarus’ wings melted when he flew too close to the sun, and he drowned in the sea. Daedalus buried his son and continued to Sicily, where he came to stay at the court of Cocalus.
In the meantime we will have to deal with our modern-day Daedalus and his apparent success with his wings! Way cool!