Taking flight for a change

No big surprise, I haven’t sold much in electronics since I sold my house in the Heights district of Houston and “mothballed” NanoHawk. Originally it was supposed to be brief while I moved, bought a new property and built it out/remodeled. Fast forward a few years and I put it back online, but no sales.

Maybe, it’s an issue with Tindie, the maker marketplace. Maybe not. Meanwhile, Eagle shape-shifted and became part of Autodesk. I’ve not had time to re-learn it and frankly I still have other priorities.

In August of 2017 I got pushed out of my day job as the CIO / IT Director of a non-profit. Cost cutting led them to think that they could lay off our junior developer, run the CIO out the door, and retain the part-time services of a non-degreed, non-certified help desk entrepeneur to oversee the enterprise and cloud infrastructure. lol. Good luck with that.

I started to make a fresh start on a new t-shirt company, which will remain nameless. That would give me income, feed me, and let me continue to tinker with electronics on the side. Soon after I signed the lease, Harvey happened to Houston. I was not directly flooded, but nearly everyone else was in Houston. It escalated my costs and delayed the buildout, burning precious cash. The offshore development team I was using strung out the site development and that burned time causing a miss to a cricital Amazon holiday window. No worries, I figured I’d pick it up on the back side of Christmas. After Holiday 2018 ended Amazon shape-shifted with draconian licensing requirements for each brand you sell. That meant that to sell Hanes t-shirts I’d need a letter from them. That effectively killed 75% of the revenue I had projected for the business.

I made a good dash for marketing and sales, but it wasn’t going to work nearly fast enough to show results before I burned through the cash I had left. So I made the difficult decision to pull the plug on it. When your airplane blows an engine on take off you hit the brakes if you can… and if not you come around and land.

I opted to become an Independent Insurance Adjuster as this would largely keep me in the field, let me help people, and keep me out of Corporate Bull By-Product. I’d had enough of that in my 5 years of running IT for a non-profit based in Houston.

Being an Independent Adjuster, or IA, is like being a permanent temp. It pays well, the work is ad-hoc, and you better have a few side gigs. When you are not “deployed” aka on-assignment, you work your side gigs or you burn cash. I decided that being a Notary and getting my 107 Drone License would be my side gigs.

I considered running them under a different business entity, and then realized that NanoHawk was a perfect name for a Drone Photography business. I’ve not given up on electronics, but it’s now just a very small side gig that I’ll mess with as time permits. I have some projects on the drawing board. I’ll continue to run them as open-source. But it’s going to be in the Electronics Section moving forward.

In the meanwhile, the site is going to be primarily about the drone business. As time permits, I’ll blog about my journey to becoming a 107 pilot. The FAA is a bureaucracy in the worst possible sense of the word. See also: Pit of Hell. While a great deal of regulation is necessary and prudent to protect manned aircraft operations, the current drone regulations are stupid. The vast majority of drone photography can be done below 100 to 200 feet and no manned aircraft should be flying that low over populated areas.

At any rate, I hope that this long explanation is helpful in understanding the changes that have taken place recently.