At Formant, we’re pretty big believers that data from robotic fleets should be in the cloud. We’ve spent the last few years building world-class, cloud-based data and telemetry solutions for robotic fleets, and we know there’s a massive benefit to robotics companies in having a web-based application to collect and manage that data.
That being said, for some deployments cloud just isn’t an option. If your facility is air-gapped, for example, or your location doesn’t have enough connectivity/bandwidth to stream your data to the cloud, you’ll need an alternative solution. And, if we’re being honest, most of the options for local robot operations solutions aren’t ideal. You either build it yourself or try to hack together a stack of open-source tools, both of which you need to constantly manage and maintain.
That’s why we’re excited to announce the release of the Formant Platform on-premise.
How does it work?
On-premise Formant is a fully-contained version of Formant that can be deployed on your own servers. It provides all of the core functionality of the Formant platform, including:
- Live and historical observability of the robot and its environment. Ingestion of telemetry like numerics, maps, json, videos, and 3D data such as point clouds, joint_state and transforms.
- Command and control the robots remotely by teleoperation, relocalization, or sending remote commands
- Enable more efficient tech support by utilizing the timeline and events workflow
- Connect to your workflow productivity tools to understand the performance of the application.
- Where applicable, extract, transform and/or export your data to your internal or external storage systems for further analysis.
High-level Formant architecture:
While self-hosting any application will come with the additional overhead of managing and maintaining the deployment, there are a number of benefits of self-hosted Formant, including:
- Ability to conform to security/compliance requirements
- Ability to use platform on a private network with limited or no internet access
- More control over application performance
- Flexibility around data and cloud providers for related services
Who is Formant on-premise for?
Many of our customers have internal requirements around air-gapped solutions, either due to security regulations, privacy concerns, or both.
Here are two example use cases for deploying Formant on-premise:
- An energy company deploys Formant on an air-gapped private network at a nuclear power plant to operate and observe devices for inspection while remaining secure.
- A robotics company runs Formant on-premise at a customer’s warehouse, allowing them to diagnose and fix issues with cleaning robots without walking across the 50,000 square foot warehouse.
Formant on-premise is part of our continued efforts to meet the needs of Enterprise companies as they scale up their robotic deployments. Other recent features that make Formant the default robotics platform for Enterprise orgs include role-based access control (RBAC), data export flexibility, and top-tier security.
Formant on-premise is an enterprise deployment option for Formant customers. To learn more about Formant or to discuss your needs around on-premise, feel free to reach out.