CAC_Tools#01 | Developed Tools Release: Multi-drone Control

<CAC_Tools> is an open source community sharing knowledge, research, and tools within the fields of art, science and technology. <CAC_Tools> will consistently publish the resources and outcomes of CAC Research & Creation related programs on official WeChat channel and the website.

<CAC_Tools> #1 | Developed Tools Release
Floating Room: Multi-drone Control

Samuel Adam Swope

Software Support:
Fito Segrera


Project's Description

As the recipient of CAC Research/Creation Fellowship 2016 Fall, Samuel Adam Swope conducted his three-month residency in Shanghai, worked closely with CAC Lab and developed a research-based aerial installation Floating Room. This piece of work is a unique aerial art installation that shifts domestic products into airborne whimsies, hovering within a staged house. It is a sensorial artwork that shapes interfaces between our things and flight, and between fantasy and digital realization. It transforms the domestic space; from static and quiet dust collecting rooms into sensational buzzing windy soundscapes. This turbulent room converges art, science and everyday matters. It is a poetic place where bodies passing through touch the control system by generating contradictory air currents.

Floating Room is a technological domestic hybrid that embraces rotor-craft technology. The products are sculptural entities that are embedded with quadcopters. The quadcopter domestic products are a physical message, one that mixes humor and narration into contemporary inquiries regarding emerging flight technologies and novel approaches to product delivery.

Floating Room’s ludic narrative is that products purchased remotely are actually drones that delivered themselves, and they stay in the house with the intention to never stop flying.

Floating Room, 2016, Installation view in the exhibition Hyperobject: Rendering the Non-Human at Chronus Art Center.


Developed Tools

For the development and presentation of this art installation we developed a series of software-based tools which are freely available here:


Each of these tools explores ways of accessing deeper layers of control and feedback for the ARdroneParrot. This specific device is a consumer level technology with some development tools, but it has no support for multi-drone flight. Our main objective with these tools was to develop an easy-to-use piece of code able to configure and fly multiple AR drones simultaneously. Some accomplishments are:

Experimenting with nodejs and javascript to access the ARdrone API. 

All source code available at


Accessing the ARdrone and make it hover in safe-mode over a QR code tag on the ground using its bottom camera. 

All source code available at


Scripting in order to hack the drones on each boot and change their main configuration. We were able to control 5 drones with one single computer and a WIFI router. The software allows to make drones fleets, fly together and follow QR code tags on the ground. 

All source code available at


About <CAC_Tools>

CAC Tools is an opensource community to share knowledge, research and tools in the disciplines of art, science and technology. Through Chronus Art Center’s official website and WeChat account, CAC Tools will publish relevant resourses and outcomes from CAC Research/Creation. This will include the tools developed by the Research/Creation fellowship winners during their residency at CAC, the outcomes of <CAC_Lab> and work related to the special program “A&T@“at Chronus Art Center.

Creative Commons License
This work by CAC_Lab, Samuel Adam Swope is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.