Getting Started

Everything you need to know to get started with Formant.

    Configure On-demand ingestion

    On-demand ingestion is the process of storing robot telemetry on the device itself so it can be accessed when needed or kept until extraction. Doing this allows us to move beyond the paradigm that a robot is simply an “always-on” source of various kinds of telemetry streams, which can only be either “on” or “off”.

    Configure on-demand per stream

    On-demand can be configured on a per-stream basis as follows:

    From the burger menu select Settings  ⇒ Device ⇒ <device name> ⇒ Telemetry ⇒ <stream name>

    The stream has an option called On-Demand, which is turned OFF by default. Turning this button on will enable On-demand ingestion for this stream.

    Configure per device on-demand disk space

    The amount of disk space that on-demand uses for storing data on the robot can be configured on a per-device basis as follows:

    From the burger menu select Settings  ⇒ Device ⇒ <device name>  ⇒ On-demand disk buffer space

    The default disk space allocated for on-demand is 200MiB. The minimum is 100MiB and the maximum is 200GiB. Note that this is in addition to the disk buffer space needed for the upload buffer.

    The primary advantage of on-demand ingestion is that it allows robot businesses to reduce the costs of mobile data transfer, cloud storage, and processing. When it comes down to it, the cost of additional on-device hard drive space is minuscule compared to the cost of cellular data transfer. By storing one’s observational data on-device and accessing it selectively — rather than passively transferring a constant stream of data to the cloud — businesses can often reduce their cellular data expenditures. Ultimately, not all telemetry generated by a robot needs to be sent immediately. 


    Data needs to be configured as on-demand prior to being available. Please read configuring on-demand data for more information.

    Once streams are configured for on-demand ingestion, the presence of on-demand can be viewed from the Channels.

    Availability/presence of on-demand data

    Streams that are configured for on-demand ingestion can be retrieved either individually or for the entire robot. 

    On-demand presence on module

    Streams that are configured as on-demand will have a purple tick mark to indicate the presence of on-demand data. 

    See below for an example of transform that is configured as on-demand stream and GPS that is configured to stream always.  

    On-demand presence on Timeline

    The presence of on-demand data is also indicated on the Timeline as a purple line above the normal presence data. 

    Retrieve on-demand data

    On-demand data can be retrieved either for a specific module or for the whole robot/device.

    Retrieve on-demand stream from a specific module:

    Click on more menu  at the top of the module and choose Retrieve on-demand data. 

    Enter the time window to retrieve data. Timeline dictates the start time from which to retrieve data.  The on-demand retrieval request will be queued up to be sent to the robot. If the robot is offline, it will stay in the queue until it comes online. You can view the status of on the timeline or on the Events page.

    Retrieve on-demand data from the whole device:

    Click on more menu  at the top of the channel and choose Retrieve on-demand data.

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