FAQ – Stuff I get asked a lot!

I’ve received a lot of emails from people who follow the DroneBot Workshop on YouTube, here on the website or on the DroneBot Workshop Forum.  Many of you have asked similar, or identical, questions, so I thought it would be a good idea to create an FAQ to answer the more common ones.

Frequently Asked Questions - DroneBot Workshop

Q – How many people work in the DroneBot Workshop?

A – Just one person, me! I’m a “one-man show”, I produce all of the content on the website and on the YouTube channel myself. If you’re really interested in learning more about me I have put together a page that will reveal (almost) everything.

Q – What video editing software and equipment do you use?

A – I use Apple Final Cut Pro to create videos.  The sound is edited using ocenaudio (I used to use Audacity for the older videos).  I shoot with Canon  and Panasonic cameras and use Audio Technica and Zoom microphones.  I make use of Apple OSX, Ubuntu Linux, and Microsoft Windows to create my content.

Q – What software do you use to create those animated diagrams in the videos?

A – I’m sure this is the most asked question I get! I use Apple Keynote to make the animated diagrams. Actually, I use Keynote for many graphic applications, as I’m essentially illiterate when it comes to Photoshop.

Q – Why did you stop doing sponsored videos?

A – When I first started on YouTube I did a number of sponsored videos, all of them for products I believed in and would have purchased myself anyway. And, while it was mostly a positive experience, in some ways it was not.

After one sponsor reprinted an article from the site without my permission (and removed all references to the DroneBot Workshop) and another pushed for the videos to be more like an advertisement and another even asked for an “unboxing video” I decided that I was finished with sponsored videos.

I stopped doing sponsored videos at the end of 2018, and I’ve never regretted the decision.  But, once again, I want to stress that every sponsored video I did was for a product that is well made and represents a good value.  And as the sponsors got BOTH a video and accompanying article I believe they received good value for their money.

And I haven’t eliminated the possibility of doing a video and/or article for an open-source or crowdfunded initiative in the future. I’m a firm supporter of both, so I would consider creating content for them if I believed in the product or service.

Q – Is that workshop real, or is it a green-screen background?

A – It is very real, and I built it all myself. It was the first time I’ve ever framed and drywalled, and I’m rather proud of the results.  I also gained a lot of respect for people who do this professionally, as it is very hard work (and I’ll probably never drywall again as long as I live). If you want to see how it all came together I created a video that shows how it was built.

Q – Why doesn’t the website have any advertisements?

A – I think of advertisements as “shiny objects” whose purpose is to attract the viewers’ attention and lead them off the website.  And I’d rather that you stay on the website! But I haven’t ruled out the possibility that one day I will create some products, and if I do I will advertise them here.

Q – Where do you get ideas for videos and articles?

A – I get content ideas from a number of places. Some just come to me naturally because this is also my hobby. I get many ideas from other peoples articles and YouTube videos, or from code I see on GitHub.  But some of my best ideas come from folks like you who suggest content. If you have content you’d like to suggest you can do it on the DroneBot Workshop Forums.

Q – Are you available for private work or consulting?

A – No, I am sorry but I am not, for a couple of reasons.

First I really have my hands full with DroneBot Workshop activities. Creating content, designing, and building projects, and running the website, YouTube channel, and forum is more than a full-time job.

Second, I started doing this because I have spent over 40 years working for other people, and now feel I would like to work for myself on my own terms.  So my private consulting days are over.

Q – Can you help me with my homework?

A – I create content on the website and YouTube that you can use to help you learn electronics and related subjects, and it’s my pleasure to do so. But no, I won’t do your homework for you.  After all, you are in school to learn how to do it yourself!  Incidentally, this is an actual question that I have been asked more than once.