Flight of the Squirrels

Tech journalism can be dangerousDarcy Whyte wanted a better model airplane

Not satisfied with many popular balsa wood and rubber band motor airplane designs, Whyte, founder and CEO of Siteware, started working on his own design, applying software development principles to model airplanes.

The result was the Squirrel and a demo unlike any other at last night’s DemoCamp in Ottawa.

The Squirrel design is provides an optimized version of the classic rubber-band powered plane not only for flight, but also in the simplicity of the construction and strength. 

“It won’t break when it hits the dog,” said Whyte.

The design went viral online and before he knew it, Whyte had a new business selling kits with Rubber-Power.

“I had no idea I’d be selling them,” said White. “I thought it was a crazy idea.”

That crazy idea, as well as some community building, led to Whyte filling bulk orders of 500-1000 Squirrels at a time.

The DemoCamp presentation climaxed with several squirrels being flown out into the audience where a certain intrepid tech reporter, absorbed in taking notes, forgot to duck.

It would seem technology reporting is a little more dangerous than I had anticipated.

Squirrel kits are available at the official website for $9.00 per kit, with discounts for larger orders. The site also includes videos of the planes in action.