Photos in the field

With the ubiquity of smart phones, when field workers are on site, they often photograph assets to show the state of the network before and /or after their site visit.

Many organisations with OSS also have Digital Asset Management (DAM) tools that allow them to store digital assets (images, video, audio, etc) in a central repository where they can be searched, managed, retrieved and shared. Perhaps not even a DAM as such, but centrally accessible file storage.

Today’s concept is to create an app to store the photo from the phone to the DAM and then easily link to the asset in the OSS inventory manager (eg a URL from the DAM being loaded into an applicable field in the OSS), also allowing notes on that asset to be amended into the OSS.

In theory, such an app could be configured to interface into any inventory manager, making it saleable to any customer, vendor or OSS integrator.

It’s common for an image to be stored somewhere other than in the OSS, and have a hyperlink stored in the OSS. It’s just painful to store hyperlinks against specific inventory items, especially in large volumes. This app would remove the pain point by acting as the glue between phone, DAM and OSS.

A couple of other thoughts:

  • Using geo-tagging within images to help correlate with fixed assets in the OSS
  • Using asset identification tools (eg RFID, NFC, QR codes, etc ) to determine the asset
  • Aligning DAM / inventory content with virtual reality tools
  • Enforcement of image naming conventions on the DAM
  • Generating design packs and subsequent as-builts with mark-ups on top of photos from in the field

Have you come across anything similar during your travels in OSS? What other important features would such an app need?

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