Promoting Technology ● Advancing Education ● Building Community

  • Home

The Latest News

Presented by Innovation Coast

Innovation Coast is bringing back the Innovation Awards in 2017 and they are looking for participants. 

Take your business invention from inception to commercialization by participating in the Innovation Awards contest – the most lucrative business plan competition and capital acceleration opportunity in Florida. If your company has a product or service that can demonstrate leverage opportunities and create pathways to robust local job creation, you may have what it takes to compete for cash prizes ranging from $5,000 to $100,000.

Note: This is not an IT Gulf Coast sponsored event.

Visit website.

Supporting STEM Saturdays at The National Flight Academy

IT Gulf Coast is proud to partner with the National Flight Academy to support its STEM Satiurday program. This donation was made possible through the proceeds received from last year’s ITEN Wired summit. IT Gulf Coast is committed to supporting educational initiatives that will foster the growth of the future STEM workforce. The programs offered by the National Flight Academy are truly unique in their approach to teaching these disciplines using an immersive and fun environment. More information about the STEM Saturday program can be found here.

IT Gulf Coast Opens 2016 Lunch and Learn Series

IT Gulf Coast held its first Lunch & Learn of 2016, giving the forty attendees a better understanding of the world of commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS’s), more commonly known as drones.

Alan Gray and Chris Tonn, owners of Pelican Drones, gave an engaging presentation on the application, restrictions and potential for UAS’s in supporting the ever-changing business environment. Because their use by the public is relatively new a lot of mysteryAlan Gray (left) and Chris Tonn of Pelican Drones. still surrounds the issue. Alan, a certified community planner, and Chris, an entrepreneur and drone enthusiast, started their venture in January 2015. At that time, Pelican Drones was the only Federal Aviation Administration certified commercial use drone providers from New Orleans to Tallahassee. Since then, the number of drone service providers has exploded over 25 in the Pensacola region alone.

Training and a respect for the rules is foundational to running a UAS-based business. Early on, Chris went through rigorous instruction similar to pilot training. Adhering to the “rules of the road” for flying were paramount: Stay below 400 feet, do not fly at night, no flying over people and no flying through airport control zones.

Although never an issue with their company, the growing popularity of drone technology and several high profile near misses with commercial aircraft brought about a move late last year by the FAA to register all drones sold. Chris and Alan pointed out that the industry had already been moving to develop better firmware that would limit the chance for airborne encounters by incorporating, amongst other things, restricted airspace programming.

Used properly, drones have opened a new world of visual imagery and commercial application. In one example, Alan showed an 18 acre construction site. High resolution cameras allows the client to see detailed tractor treads in the dirt. What’s more, using digital elevation modeling, clients can analyze the slope of a property or the quantity of landfill brought on site.

“By identifying dimensions of a mound and applying simple volumetric calculations, the client can determine if, for example, the 410 trucks of fill were deposited on site or if it was 205,” noted Alan Gray. “There is also the ability to overview the work site progress on a regular basis defined by the client.”

By far, the most interesting aspect of drone services is the ability to provide more visually stimulating video for production and advertising. An excellent example shows the stunning beauty of Pensacola Beach, a production that has been viewed over half a million times and shared by over 7,000 Pensacolians.

Both owners pointed to a future that is wide open. “Companies are experimenting with delivering products to the home using barcode technology. In Germany, there is a move underway to ship emergency medical supplies, such as blood, using drones. Their use avoids the problems of being stuck in ground traffic when moments count.” Other applications are being considered every day.

Although the weather did not cooperate for a short demonstration, the presentation was a rousing success to the audience. Special thanks to Southern Light for its generous donation in covering the cost of lunch for the attendees and the Argo Athletic Club for use of their facilities.

Upcoming events

23 Mar 2017 5:30 PM • Blend Lounge - 200 S. Palafox, Pensacola, FL 32502
12 Apr 2017 • Pensacola Beach Hilton, 12 Via De Luna Dr Pensacola Beach, FL 32561

ITGulfCoast on Twitter

ITGULFCOAST is proud to be a strategic partner with

P.O. Box 13524
Pensacola, FL  32591

Contact Us

 Information Technology Association of the Gulf Coast

Promoting technology. Advancing education. 
Building community.

Founded 2000


Follow us on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Follow us on google+  

© 2015 Information Technology Association of the Gulf Coast, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software