Utter the word ‘drone’ and some may immediately think of geopolitics and extrajudicial reach. There are other ways the two topics are connected.
The smartphone app that comes with a DJI Phantom has a nifty feature that allows you to see a map of where you have flown and the images your quadcopter drone has captured. When you use the feature, however, the map will remind you that DJI is a Hong Kong based company: The choice of mapping service is Baidu Maps, and location descriptors use Chinese characters.
Interestingly, with DJI’s decision to use a Chinese mapping service we are treated to an insight into current geopolitical spats: Dashes the same colour as the land border around China stretch south to outline a vast U-shaped area of the South China Sea. Not everyone agrees that China’s claim is in accordance with international law.