Advice on which board to purchase?

Hey guys, gals, Straight to the point-

I want to be able to control at least: 4 motors (dc) 1 3 axis gyro and 1 3 axis accelerometer on a common board 1 2.4 ghz receiver/transmitter

and possibly later: Camera GPS unit proximity sensor

You can see where I'm going with this :P Quadrotor! (or quadcopter, there is no official terminology)

I am looking at the Uno. What do you think? Is that all I will need, or will I need a "motor shield"? (what is a shield?)

I'm a total noob, so I'll need help with the basic terminology. I've done control systems before with Matlab, but that was a stationary computer and large DAQ board.

Whatcha got?! Any and all, I would really appreciate it!

There are sites around the net dedicated to projects like this you might want to check out. Not sure what area you are in, that would help.

US: http://www.quadroufo.com/

Europe: http://uavp.ch/moin

Search "Open source quadrocoptor"

Shields are an easy way to add functionality to your board. Though it's not recommended to stack too many on top of each other as some boards may use the same pins on your Uno.

http://shieldlist.org/

I am looking to start with this program: http://www.instructables.com/id/Quadrotor/step23/Code/

I am buying the necessary parts on their list though I'll probably design my own mechanical layout..

They use the mini, and I wanted to get an Uno since they look easier to pin and plug and seem to support more functionality. I will definitely check out that website though (I'm in West Virginia, USA). I guess my main concern was the limits to the Uno board- how much stuff I could potentially put on it.

They do a fairly good layout and I figured I could just start with their code, and as I figured it out I could change it a little. If the website you gave me has something better or cheaper though I might switch plans. I haven't bought anything yet.

First a quick disclaimer: I am by no means an expert. I've not made one of these or even seen one in person...

With that out of the way. These things seem to have quite a bit of lift. Able to carry an onboard SLR camera and other loads. Therefore I doubt the extra weight from an Uno over a nano would make much of a difference. But, if you want the uno because you can just push wires into the headers I'd be concerned with vibrations knocking them out. I'd personally get the nano, solder male headers onto it then solder that to a larger board and make my connections on that. With something like this you wouldn't want a connection coming lose at 90 feet in the air.

BTW, I cant say which is better. I was just doing the tiniest bit of research about 6 months ago and found those sites. Thought they might help you out a bit.