The FAA, NASA and private company Flirtey have announced the first authorized drone delivery of packages in the USA starting July 17th 2015, see article on Yahoo.
Update June 28, 2015: Dutch women use drone to fly abortion pills from Germany to Poland, where abortions are illegal, see article on BBC.
A lot of people object to autonomous drones, or even the regular kind, even to the point of blasting them with shotguns. Aside from the invasion of privacy, they threaten the jobs of one of the few growing sectors left – UPS & FEDEX & USPS drivers. The more delivery drones there are in the air, the easier it will be to hide the ones spying on you, or planning to attack kamikaze style. So what brought this about?
The crash rate equation (see Economic Optimization of Innovation & Risk) suggests that a very high “value” of the product or service will cause tolerance of a very high crash rate, or risk generally. Indeed, the drones will be used to deliver medicine to a remote clinic in West Virginia in an under-served region. Who can argue with that? The drones will hardly bother anyone in such a sparsely populated area, and the benefit outweighs the immediate risk.
But after a year or two of operation, and no drones in the middle of nowhere running into anything, or anyone, the PTB (powers that be) will conclude that it is safe for your neighborhood, too. The same guys who brought you massive credit card theft from corporate servers, and who hacked U.S. Government personnel records for employees with security clearances, will then have a miniature air force deployed over the U.S., theirs for the taking at any instant.