Easy does it
I think the “special edition community call” will happen but not as next step. I’ll try to assemble some info into a really short pitch - perhaps multiple pitches.
Most likely what I’ll do is something like a presentation of 10-15 slides with narration of project concepts, and some more explanation in the appendix to get people who are new to the topic onto the same page.
If I get the impression we have a fighting chance to reach “critical mass” for some sort of project (with various ways and degrees of participation), I’ll try to frame it in a more orthodox way. I’ll try to shoot for something that can start small, but demonstrates potential impact, and a path to ramp it up.
Regarding “gender / other peoples perception”:
I’ll take one step back.
In my opinion drones are at the point where many of the non-innovative, technologically skeptical, and clueless parts of society have decided that drones will play a significant role in the future*. I am not sure how large this part will actually be. I think it is a pretty complex problem, but that is a story for later.
Now of course some actors smell a bigger market or faster ROI than others. These are likely to push for funding and policy changes (FAA & EASA), which may end up making alternative routes of development difficult or impossible. As drones have been largely developed in a military environment, this defines the perspective of many of these early players (to some degree) at least.
However: We’re about to introduce drones into many of our everyday lives - not just over the heads of an enemy army. We need to bring diverse public interests to the table. And we need to involve people into design decisions somehow. The reference to gender was because my impression has been that the female views don’t seem to have a lot of traction in this. Nadia gave a good exception - but it has very few views. Here I am not talking so much about a lack of female engineers working on drones (quite a few do). I am more thinking about the global (especially: informal) economic activity that represents a large fraction of economic activity in developing nations. Also, I am thinking of female equality / empowerment / safety aspects which could be addressed more effectively if their voices were represented throughout the process.
*Outside of the military.
They will definitely play a role on the battlefield - probably an important one. To be honest this is a field I am interested as well, because technology can often make military conflict significantly more “humane” or less “humane”. And it often indirectly influences general power structures significantly over time. I think it is worthwhile to look at this - but I also think 99% of the time, 99% of the drones should be busy doing something less ambiguously beneficial. That is what I’d like to concentrate on in the context of edgeryders. If we can tap into bloated and headless defense budgets to do this (and save social budgets for other projects) it may merit a discussion.