Canvas + Formant: Data Flexibility For Robotics Companies

When it comes to building a successful robotics company, data is key. Yet, the strategic importance of data and data flexibility is often an afterthought, especially when it comes to building a strong tech stack.  

Data affects every department, from operations to engineering, finance, and business. Although each has different needs for data, their reliance on it to keep the business healthy and growing is critical. 

As a data platform, Formant understands the critical need for data flexibility within robotics companies – but it took learning a few lessons to come to this conclusion. Jeff Linnell, CEO of Formant, and Regis Vincent, VP of Engineering for Canvas Construction, recently met with The Robot Report to discuss how data flexibility is helping robotics companies conduct in-depth analyses and make important decisions for their future. See some of the highlights from their chat: 


A Lesson Learned 

The webinar kicked off with Jeff discussing the three critical components of running a successful robotics company: 

  • Hardware 
  • Autonomy 
  • Data platform- this is where Formant comes in. 

Formant’s data backbone is the core of our platform. It helps us eliminate the noise of everyday operations to collect the right data at the right time for the right purpose.

However, data wasn’t always this flexible on Formant. For a brief history of Formant’s data, Jeff explained how we initially assumed users would want to view data entirely within the platform. It quickly it became clear that this caused more issues and labor on Formant’s end to get the requested data out to the customer. Instead, we realized data needs to be liberated and in the hands of the customer. Today, Formant has now built flexible pipes for all of the customer’s data, flowing from the robot to the tool needed to store and manipulate data points.    

Diagram demonstrating data flexibility in Formant


A Perfect Match

Next, Regis Vincent, VP of Engineering for Canvas Construction, discussed his company’s journey with data in the Formant platform. 

Based in San Francisco, Canvas Construction builds and leases drywall finishing robots. Many of these robots are helping to address mass labor shortages in the construction industry, which Regis stated is ready for automation as a result. 

When Canvas began using Formant, they had custom-built dashboards built to view their data, streaming into the platform from their deployed fleets. As they grew their data needs grew as well.

With Formant’s data flexibility feature, Canvas has been able to export any data they need to make engineering and business decisions quickly without waiting on Formant to build dashboards for them. 


Real-Time Example

Jeff showed the audience an example of Formant data flexibility using a Boston Dynamics’ Spot dog located in Colorado to demonstrate live data streaming with Formant, and pushing this data into external tools. 

If you didn’t get the chance to watch the webinar live or are looking to view it again, check out the recorded version of the event below. 

Want to learn more about how data flexibility can help your robotics company scale its fleet? Get a demo with our team.

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Superior observability, operations, and analytics of heterogenous fleets, at scale.

Explore our data ops platform

Superior observability, operations, and analytics of heterogenous fleets, at scale.