This time last year, I was a FEMA employee working in the field of GIS. I was pondering at that time how to build a mobile GIS app that worked on an iPad or iPhone and could be deployed into the field with the Public Assistance teams (their current process involves paper and GPS units, and a lot of data entry done in hotel rooms). This mobile app would need to be extremely easy to use, be able to feed data into a database, and the data be viewable on a live map. This was a challenging proposition, but one that excited me.
After a lot of effort in database configuration and testing, it became clear that I needed to think outside of the box, as I had experimented with dozens of mobile GIS data collection software solutions currently on the market. It was at that point that a coworker recommended that I “check out Fulcrum.”
That day, I signed up for a Fulcrum trial and quickly saw the ease of use, flexibility, live data feeds and mapping capabilities. In just one day, I was able to build a prototype app, deploy it to an iPad and demo a functioning app. I quickly realized that the Fulcrum team is building a GIS tool that is so easy to use that it is going to expose GIS to a whole new market (a market that doesn’t necessarily even know it is using GIS). And while doing so, Fulcrum is bringing an easier data collection platform to GIS professionals (who may not know how simple this can be). It is a new dawn, and the days of operating costly, overly complex GPS units are behind us…
This was so inspiring to me that I contacted Fulcrum’s CEO and VP and expressed my enthusiasm for their product, and it was shortly thereafter that I joined their team. I am now Fulcrum’s Product Manager, and I truly believe that Fulcrum is creating a paradigm shift in the way people collect data in the field. Using off-the-shelf tablets and smartphones, we have customers collecting data in some of the most remote locations in the world. The days of my GIS worldview requiring expensive and complicated systems are in the past. The future of GIS data collection is fast, easy and powerful.
Here is a short video that I created which demonstrates Fulcrum’s capabilities: