Technology company Intel set a new world record for the most unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) airborne simultaneously on 4 November 2015, synchronising 100 drones with a live orchestra in Germany. The stunt was co-created by new media art institute Ars Electronica, based in Linz, Austria. Director of the company's "Futurelab", Horst Hoertner, said it was the result of years of hard work.
"No matter what it's going to be incredible. I can't describe it, it's years of effort, development and hope exploding in one minute, in this one moment of excitement," he said.
Video of the stunt showed the drones making patterns in the night sky, flashing and changing colour in time with Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, as an audience stood by watching. Although filmed in November the video was first shown at the keynote speech of Intel CEO Brian Krzanich at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada on 5 January.
Intel created its own ground controls software for the stunt, animation software that required a powerful computer to perform effectively, Futurelab member Andreas Jalsovec said. An Intel statement said Futurelab's incentive was to take the emphasis away from drones looking at people and point it towards drones as a form of art, communication, or research.