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Drone Deploy adding Geofencing

Discussion in 'Site Mapping' started by Dave Pitman, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. Dave Pitman

    Dave Pitman Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately Drone Deploy is choosing to add their own geofencing scheme. The topic came up on their forum and I thought they were just passing through dji's geofencing but it turns out that there are problems with that so they are adding their own. And a user must get permission from DD in order to do a mapping mission within the NFZ.

    I have voiced my opinion that I think that DD following DJI's lead and imposing a NON-Mandated Geofence is a bad idea. For any of you that use DD for mapping missions, you may want to chime in.

    I use Map Pilot and Drone Deploy for grid missions. I haven't yet needed fly one at an airport but I can't rule it out as I've done other work at airports. I will try and find out if Drones Made Easy (Map Pilot) is doing anything similar. We don't need any more third parties adding non-mandated restrictions that have the potential to cause us problems in the field. I know Litchi does not do this.

    </rant>

    DJI GEO compatability
     
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  2. Florida Drone Supply

    Florida Drone Supply Well-Known Member
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    Hey Dave...

    We went with a client to demo some equipment at an airport here in FL this past year and they flew a DD mission over the airport and runways. If DD follow through on what you mentioned above it will add another layer of complexity to getting the proper approvals. Have they mentioned how their "unlocking" process might work?

    Michael
     
  3. Dave Pitman

    Dave Pitman Well-Known Member

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    Hi Michael,

    Apparently you just contact them and they will unlock for you although I don't know the details and they don't seem to have them written anywhere. I thought that sdk apps would just honor dji's zones but apparently they are going further. The link in my first post is to the thread on DD support forum, but I'll post my last question to them and their response below. It seems like a strange approach and definitely something else that can go wrong. I'm not sure why they are going this route.

    Hi @Yusuf So, to be clear, you are just talking about the DJI nannyware that is present already and DD "honors" that system. If the user unlocks in GO, or even better, has modified craft FW that has all that stuff removed, then DD will work just fine, correct?
    Or, are you saying that DD doesn't care about any of that and DD adds an additional layer of nannyware on top of that?
    Looking for specifics here. Thank you.



    @Dave We have that No Fly Zone restriction in place because DJI's ability to unlock and lock their geofencing through a third-party app is faulty. This is because you must have a DJI verified account to unlock your restricted area to fly. Once full, seamless integration is available we will then begin to have this feature on the user side of our application.

    In the meantime, you must reach out in order to have access to fly in restricted areas.
     
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  4. Rasit

    Rasit Member

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    Thanks for spreading the word. Personally I think that sucks. I am a DD Business customer and have been spending about $500/month with them, experimenting with their GCP mapping. Their output product is pretty good (not great) but I’m not convinced their flight app is any better than others out there anyway. I can fly with Map Pilot, get the photos and upload them to DD and avoid the whole geo-fence issue. I always fly responsibly and don’t want or need anybody restricting my work. If they make it so you have to use their flight app exclusively, it would be a deal breaker for me and I would be out.
     
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  5. ArrUnTuS

    ArrUnTuS Well-Known Member

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    Some justify these acts by saying that it is to prevent amateurs from entering restricted air zones. How is it justified that professional products have these limitations? :oops:
     
  6. Dave Pitman

    Dave Pitman Well-Known Member

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    Or, they think that it helps to limit their liability. But in truth, they are probably increasing their perceived liability by placing themselves between the aircraft and the operator.

    I'm sure DD would change their policy if they receive enough bad press from commercial ops. With all the planning and hurdles, the last thing we need is for an app to not let us fly.
     
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  7. BigAl07

    BigAl07 Moderator
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    Exactly. Now if the GeoFencing fails for one reason or another we, the operator, could say, "The GEOFENCE was installed but it didn't stop me from flying over the airport and it''s not my fault because I trusted the GEOFENCE."
     
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  8. ArrUnTuS

    ArrUnTuS Well-Known Member

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    Forgive me guys but I understand that geofence is the function that allows you as a pilot to determine the limits that you think fit. We're talking about the No Fly Zones, right?

    I use the GeoFence function on many occasions not to break the rules, it is my decision and it is not necessary for anyone to come imposing things on me.

    I simply consider it to be different things, to qualify. I'm gonna call it No Fly Zones. What a rage DJI gives me with this subject. I would not like to see any company with these practices and less more doing the same :oops:
     
  9. Dave Pitman

    Dave Pitman Well-Known Member

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    @ArrUnTuS

    You have it correct.

    You are creating and using 'geo-fencing' to suit your particular operation. That is a great use for the technology. On the other hand, we have DJI that creates 'geo-fences' around what they think are No Fly Zones (NFZs). The NFZ is the geographic area and the geo-fence is the technology they impose to prevent flight in the NFZ. So, in one case you are using geo-fencing as a tool. And in the other case DJI is taking decision and control away from the operator. Yuneec also uses this approach, but unlike DJI, Yuneec will disable the system for certified commercial operators.

    I'm pretty sure you understand all this already and my explanation is only meant to define the semantics.

    DJI's system must fall apart to some degree when using an sdk app. And now we have Drone Deploy wanting to step in and fill the gaps.
     
    #9 Dave Pitman, Feb 15, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
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  10. ArrUnTuS

    ArrUnTuS Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, it was for clarity. The GeoFence function is a very useful tool for pilots. If you have the option to create GeoFence polygonal, the normal is round, you can determine the limits of a property for example to do surveillance, make sure that the aircraft will not exceed the limits. This is just one example, there are many occasions where it can be used.

    The NFZ is an imposition that does not respond to any specific law. Though the idea has come from a government. I consider it a mistake to record following that path and penalize your customers with unnecessary inconvenience. There are already drone flight regulations that allow to fly in CTR's, complying with strict rules of course. Adding more problems to the operation of an already complicated flight is meaningless :(

    I believe that the path DD has taken responds to pressure from public institutions. Something they want to achieve but I don't know if it's clear to them that in the end their customers are the pilots. Biting the hand that feeds you has never been a good idea.
     
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  11. Mike Nevins

    Mike Nevins Well-Known Member

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    You know, we really don't need these Nannies running our business. They have no right, or authority to implement additional restrictions on us. If these companies continue, we need to create a collation of like minded commercial pilots to keep them in line. DD will shoot themselves in the foot if they continue on this path.:(
     
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  12. Jesse G

    Jesse G Well-Known Member

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    I think this really shows you the type of pilots that dronedeploy are marketing towards. Maybe they assume since these pilots aren't bothering to learn how to process their data sets themselves they aren't bothering to stay in legal airspace either? Its dissapointing they feel the need to add there own baby sitter since they focus on DJI aircraft which already has its own. All the more reason to explore other options with more capability like UGCS, right?
     
  13. Florida Drone Supply

    Florida Drone Supply Well-Known Member
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    Thanks Dave - appreciate the info.
     
  14. Florida Drone Supply

    Florida Drone Supply Well-Known Member
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    @Jesse G: Have you dug into UGCS much yet? We had an M210RTK owner call us today with some questions about how it integrates with the RTK system. I am still looking into it myself for them.
     
  15. Mike Nevins

    Mike Nevins Well-Known Member

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    I don't know about the "type of pilots that dronedeploy are marketing towards." I mean, I really don't have the time or want to go to the expense of processing the data sets say through Pix4D, not to mention the learning curve. What is DD motivation for implementing these restrictions? I don't even think DJI has the right or authority to do so, so why would DD be any different? If it was some other type of technology, would we put up with these types of restrictions especially if we are footing the bill in their services and products? I think not. Can you imagine every app developer putting their own restrictions on? Really, I hope this does not get out of control, otherwise it's almost not worth the trouble.
     
  16. Jesse G

    Jesse G Well-Known Member

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    I have been using UGCS since May and have had some ups and downs but ive found the features that it offers are second to none so tge occasional trouble shooting has been worth it. I wish I had answers about rhe integration of the RTK system but I dont own any RTK equipped drones so I haven't a clue. I can say that their support team has always been a great help and ive always gotten help within a day of a request so if they have problems I'm sure the team there would be quick to help.
     
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  17. Jesse G

    Jesse G Well-Known Member

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    Mike,
    I didnt mean to sound negative towards any pilots that use DD or don't bother learning the process of photogrammetry...its a big process and its complicated to say the least but there is something to be said for understanding the product your offering to clients. DD is a product that does everything for a pilot and takes all the work and thinking out of the equation and because of its fully automated process the product it generates is truly sub par for accurate mapping. All I'm saying is if they feel the need to take all the thinking out of photogrammetry then it would make sense for them to think they need to take the thinking out of flying too.
     
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  18. Florida Drone Supply

    Florida Drone Supply Well-Known Member
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    Appreciate the thoughts and I will look more into the RTK integration to see if it exists. Thanks!
     
  19. Jesse G

    Jesse G Well-Known Member

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    Any time, if you cant find any info on thw subject let me know and I'd be happy to email support with an inquiry since sometimes paying customers get answers quicker than potential customers.
     
  20. Florida Drone Supply

    Florida Drone Supply Well-Known Member
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    Awesome...thanks again!