The flying machine featured here is called an ornithopter, and its conceptual origins date back at least as far as the late 15th century, when Leonardo Da Vinci first produced drawings of a bird-like machine capable of flight.
Remember those old timey flying contraptions inventors used to think up? With bulky, mechanical wings that they flapped? Such a device—a human-powered ornithopter—was successfully flown continuously for the first time, marking a bit of aviation history.
Japanese researchers have built an artificial butterfly that mimics the unusual flight patterns of the swallowtail butterfly. Their tiny model is called an "ornithopter" - and we've got the video of the little guy in flight.
This Disney RC Tinker Bell is one seriously sweet flying fairy. As you see in the video, it's using WowWee's FlyTech ornithopter-type vertical flying system to flutter, glide and dive around this Waldorf-Astoria suite. It'll be out in the fall for $40. [Disney]
I'm not afraid of bats and low-flying birds, but Interactive Toy's i-Fly Vamp R/C Ornithopter really creeps me out with all its fluttering and swooping. The toy will retail for $40 to $50 when it comes to the US in November, unfortunately just a tad too late for Halloween. –Video by Richard Blakeley [Interactive Toy]