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Nixie the Wearable Selfie Drone Delights Crowd at CES 2015

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Drones are everywhere at CES 2015, including various mentions and demos through the opening day keynote by Intel CEO Brian Krzanich. And of these, that one that has captured everyone’s attention came at the end of the Intel presentation, when Krzanich brought out Christoph Kohstall and Jelena Jovanovic, the winners of the recent Intel “Make it Wearable” challenge, to have them demonstrate their Edison-powered Nixie wearable drone.

Its first public demonstration did not disappoint. Kohstall, sporting Nixie on his wrist like a bionic wristwatch, snapped the device off his arm and explained that it has no controller, but rather flies away with a toss, pauses to snap a photo, and then returns to the sender to be caught.

nixie drone wrist worn


Kohstall, Jovanovic, and Krzanich then huddled together, flicked the small yellow drone across the stage, and watched it come back to them for a quick catch.

A moment later, the image shot by the drone popped onto the stage’s large screen. Krzanich asked the crowd and keynote viewers to tweet it, resulting in the #flynixie hashtag to shortly climb high into the Twitter trending list.


It’s a surprising and exciting demonstration of a concept that had caught eyes over the past few months, winning the $500,000 Intel challenge and capturing the imagination of many while still in conceptual stage.

The creators mentioned that they’ll continue refining the platform and will be releasing it to market in the future.

Watch the full CES 2015 Intel keynote here — skip to the 58-minute mark to watch the Nixie demo.


7 thoughts on “Nixie the Wearable Selfie Drone Delights Crowd at CES 2015

      1. I also think of glowing gas.. Then there is the USPS term nixie which has something to do with badly addressed mail.. Also does not conjure up even vague notions of drones..

  1. I have a tagline for them: “Nixie! For when a selfie stick is just not obnoxious enough”!

  2. My name is Veronique, however, I have been called Nixie since birth. How great is that ? Maybe I should claim my “Right of Publicity”. Jelena and Christoph, I would love to hear how you got to choose the name “Nixie” for your product ?

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Mike Senese is the Executive Editor of Make: magazine. He is also a TV host, starring in various engineering and science shows for Discovery Channel, including Punkin Chunkin, How Stuff Works, and Catch It Keep It.

An avid maker, Mike spends his spare time tinkering with electronics, doing amateur woodworking, and attempting to cook the perfect pizza.

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