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Should We Really Just Call Everything a "Drone" By Default?

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There's a revolution in the skies. Things are flying around up there. Some of them are remote controlled, some of them are autonomous. Some of them shoot at people, some of them don't. Some of them are in stores, some are military. But should we just call them all "drones"?

It might seem like a pedantic argument—and in the comments of a post about a quadcopter, it often is—but language shapes the way we engage with our technology. By putting such a wide variety of machines under one umbrella, we're changing their relationships to each other, and our relationship to them.


What can or should be called a drone is an argument we've had here at Gizmodo more than once. We have a lot of different, strong opinions on the subject. But now it's time to sort it out once and for all, out in the open.

Should we lump all these flying doodads under the "drone" umbrella?

Image via AP