We're getting in the holiday spirit at UP42 and wanted to share some gifts with you in the form of some great new features and blocks. In light of the new normal, we're also making some changes to how we work together and look after each other as a company.
Check out what we've been up to this month 👇
——— ✨ What's New? 🚀 ———
We're so excited to launch a feature that has been hotly requested through our feedback portal. If you're familiar with working with geospatial data and processing, you'll be familiar with that slight unease when you push that order, process, or run button. It's nearly impossible to know how much your analysis is going to cost you. Until now!
We pride ourselves on transparency on pricing at UP42. Each block has a determined pixel, tile, area, or memory-based price openly available on the block details page. However, running workflows can make price calculation trickier. For example, when you purchase a 10km2 satellite image from a square km2-based price block, you process it in a block with MB-based pricing. Additionally, especially for machine learning algorithms, infrastructure costs can make up a significant portion of the price of the entire workflow.
Our customers have run thousands of jobs on UP42, leveraging a wide variety of data sources and processing capabilities. Utilizing the actual cost and processing time of those jobs, our data science team worked on a machine-learning algorithm and a basic rule set algorithm that estimates the cost of data, processing capabilities, and infrastructure costs.
These costs, alongside the estimated processing time, are displayed to you as a range, giving you the confidence to hit that "Run job" button without the risk of running over your credit balance.
Simply create a workflow or open an existing workflow in the console and configure a job for that workflow. You will receive a price estimate automatically in the job configuration screen. Of course, as with all our features, you can access this feature via API or with our Python SDK. Use the command,
workflow.estimate_job(input_parameters), when working with the SDK to get a price estimate directly in your Jupyter Notebook.
Whether you want to access and download satellite imagery or run that satellite imagery through a range of pre-processing and analytics capabilities, UP42 is the platform for you. Our new ordering capability makes accessing data alone easier than ever.
Our new "Data" tab in the catalog search enables you to search over Pléiades and SPOT imagery. Choose your AOI and filter by date range, cloud cover, and data source to see the list of scenes that fulfill your requirements. Once you've selected your scene, you'll get a price estimate and can directly purchase the imagery, which appears in your user storage, once delivered.
The process via API is very similar. Once authenticated in your CLI, you can search for available images using the
search command and your desired parameters. The result will be a feature collection with the resulting images metadata, including a
scene_id, along with other key information, is subsequently used to define the parameters of the order of your desired scene. You then place a
post request, which will return an
order_id used to get the status of an order and the ID of the asset associated with it. As with the console process, you can estimate the cost of your data before purchasing it.
Your ordered data would soon become accessible via API. For a full walkthrough of the ordering API, you can review this notebook.
Our user storage functionality was recently introduced primarily for the ease of delivery of tasking data. We've now extended this functionality so that any Pléiades or SPOT Download data ordered or used in a workflow will now automatically be stored in your personal user storage. You can now store, review, and download all your high-resolution imagery purchased through UP42 in a single place.
The new processing block from Spacept runs on SPOT and Pléiades imagery and returns a probability of each pixel in the image containing a tree. This block has a wide range of applications, from construction planning to vegetation management and encroachment detection.
Cloud masks from Airbus can now be easily added to SPOT and Pléiades imagery, ensuring that the effect of cloud coverage on processing results is minimized.
You can now access data for a specific vessel regardless of geographical location. Specify vessel ID and the date range and access AIS data priced based upon the number of requested data points.
You can now access high-quality historical, current, and forecasted weather data from Meteomatics in the form of a visual product as a GeoTIFF, as an alternative to their existing blocks outputting a NetCDF.
——— 🏢 Updates From The Team 👪 ———
We're over the moon to welcome Jorge to the team. He joined this month as our Head of Product leading the UP42 platform into its next phase of development, shaping the vision of what our platform and marketplace will look like in the years to come.
Jorge brings a wealth of product knowledge from the geospatial world with over half a decade of experience focused specifically on agriculture at Pix4D - a photogrammetry software suite for drone mapping. In his spare time, Jorge loves to both cook and skateboard, so we're split on whether to suggest a team dinner or skateboarding masterclass as our next team event! 🛹
Reshma is another exciting addition to our growing product team, joining as a product manager. Reshma is new to the geospatial world but has substantial experience leading agile product management processes, most recently, at Newstore - an omnichannel SaaS solution for the retail industry.
Before working in product management, Reshma was a technical content writer, so if you notice a step up in our product communications, you know why! 📝
Last but certainly not least, we're thrilled to have Caroline join the team as our Operations and Compliance Manager. Caroline has a breadth of valuable experience, having studied law and worked as legal counsel for a range of clients. After moving to Berlin, Caroline shifted her focus from law to compliance and will be supporting UP42 with all compliance-related topics, from GDPR to data licensing.
Caroline also shared that she sings Celine Dion prior to her first meeting of the day to warm up her voice. Great working-from-home tip! We are all gutted that the pandemic prevents us from having the obligatory round of Christmas karaoke, where we are all sure that Caroline would win hands down! 🎤
Let's be honest, there are plenty of reasons to be pleased to see the back of this year! But despite all the challenges, we're delighted with what we've achieved at UP42. One of the key ways we measure that achievement is in the success of our efforts to expand the team.
Firstly, we had 2091 applications to our job roles this year, with our HR team reviewing every single one. We'd like to thank each person who took the time to submit an application and interview for a role at UP42. We've loved interacting with you. As a result of so many great applications, we welcomed 21 new joiners, of which 15 joined the engineering team. We are also eagerly anticipating the addition of the 6 additional new joiners who have signed and will come aboard in early 2021.
To support the team's rapid growth and ensure each and every new joiner hits the ground running, we completely changed our onboarding process. On the one side, this was to facilitate a more scalable process. Still, simultaneously, we were forced to drastically alter our processes with COVID-19 pushing the team to become entirely virtual almost overnight.
As well as having structured, virtual onboarding sessions with each team in the company, every new joiner was assigned a buddy whose role it was to guide them through the initial month. This new onboarding process better enabled the team's growth while driving engagement and a feeling of togetherness in a time where we are unfortunately unable to be together in the office.
This year has been truly unprecedented, a year that has seen a radical transformation in the way we live and work. Many of our tools to interact and collaborate with work colleagues and many of our outlets to relax and recharge outside of work have been restricted. As a company, we recognized that change, listened to the feedback from the team, and wanted to do what we can to safeguard our employees' mental and physical well-being.
As a result, we've expanded the benefits on offer to UP42 employees, starting with three new components:
- Firstly, and one of our most requested benefits, we've provided the team with access to Headspace - a meditation and wellness app.
- Secondly, we are lucky enough to have our very own trained yoga instructor on staff - our Head of HR, Maria Yasinovskaya - who will be giving virtual yoga classes twice a week for the team.
- Finally, we are making external counseling and coaching available from the online platform, It's Complicated.
Although these benefits have been introduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic and based on listening feedback from the team, they are benefits that will endure after this difficult period has passed. Our team's well-being has always been and will remain paramount as the team grows and the world continues to change.
We're continually expanding our team to bring amazing new people just like you on board. Check out our latest open role below, all our open positions here, or if you don't find what you're looking for, drop us a speculative application!
Does building up a sales organization from scratch sound exciting to you? Our new senior sales manager will join the UP42 team remotely and lead the APAC sales efforts. | Apply now
Are you interested in being part of building the most secure and scalable product and analytics infrastructure in the geospatial industry? Then this role is for you! | Apply now
——— 📅 In Case You Missed It 😱 ———
Monitoring maritime activity is of utmost importance for geospatial solutions from fleet management to dark vessel detection. But to build maritime surveillance solutions that offer accurate, timely, and actionable insights, we need the right data.
Understanding the benefits, overcoming the limitations, and leveraging the complementary nature of optical imagery, radar data, and AIS information is key.
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——— 🔮 Coming Up 👀 ———
We recently announced our Team Collaboration functionality, enabling you to better share UP42 assets and projects across members of the same team. We're continuing to evolve that functionality, enabling company admins to sign up to UP42 as a team, instantly activating UP42 accounts for multiple team members.
As mentioned earlier in this blog post, all your purchased Pléiades and SPOT imagery will be automatically added to your user storage. In January, we'll enable processing that data in UP42 workflows, allowing you to reuse and analyze the same data with different analytics as many times as you'd like.
WorldDEM12 - a 12m x 12m raster elevation model from Airbus - will soon be available on the UP42 marketplace. Additionally, we'll publish WorldDEM4Ortho, a data product tailored for the orthorectification of high and very high resolution optical and radar satellite data.
Are you excited about these new features, data sources, or processing capabilities? Are there other things that you'd like to see us deliver for you? Let us know through our feedback portal!
And that's a wrap for 2020! But before we close for the year, we want to take this opportunity to wish all our users, followers, and everyone associated with UP42 the best during this turbulent period. Although we are starting to see some light at the end of the tunnel, this global pandemic has changed the way we all live, work, and interact with one another in some challenging and likely enduring ways.
As a company, we set out in April to support organizations responding to the pandemic by offering free access to the UP42 platform. This support program remains open, and if it applies to you or an organization that you are a part of, we urge you to apply.
With that, we wish you all a relaxing break over the holidays and look forward to sharing some cool updates with you in January!