Air Delivery

Many believe drones will be used to deliver building materials to jobsites.
Alex Salcedo A mandatory federal registry opens today.

Beginning today, individuals and companies owning drones weighing between 0.55 pounds and 55 pounds must register the device in a new database manned by the Federal Aviation Administration. The news follows last month’s release of a set of recommendations from an FAA committee as to how the administration could get drone owners in the U.S. to do just that, and it is part of a broader push to regulate the burgeoning market for small unmanned aerial vehicles without stifling innovation. Earlier this year, we wrote about how a lack of clear rules and regulations around using drones for commercial purposes in the U.S. was causing ambiguity among operators but wasn't keeping them from finding ways to integrate the new technology into their work, especially in AEC, where drone use includes site surveying, building maintenance, and project photography. The FAA is expected to hand down formal regulations on small-drone use in the U.S. by 2017. In the meantime, if your drone weighs more than two sticks of butter, tell the government. [FAA + IEEE Spectrum + ARCHITECT]

#longread: It wasn’t resonance. The real reason why the Tacoma Narrows suspension bridge spanning Washington’s Puget Sound and notoriously dubbed “Galloping Gertie” collapsed 75 years ago. [Motherboard]

How Danish manufacturer Bang & Olufsen grew from a small shop making radios to become an international purveyor of high-end audio/visual equipment known for its modern design. [Wired]

ICYMI: Five digital tools to test building performance. [ARCHITECT]

Smart-home products startup Quirky, which launched in 2009 and received acclaim for its grassroots approach to product development, filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection earlier this year, drawing the ire of partner G.E. for allegedly falling short on customer service for a suite of co-branded products. [The Wall Street Journal]

Lined with sound-dampening hemp, this standalone modular panel stylishly buffers noise in open-plan spaces. [Fast Company’s Co.Design]

Investment in augmented and virtual reality hardware and companion software is fast making the technology an industry in and of itself, which is poised to change the way many other sectors (including AEC) work. [The New York Times]