This week we hear from IGNITE Finalist Jose Luis Barajas from Mexico City. In this Q&A, Jose shares insight on his background in business intelligence and geophysics and how it sparked his interest in building a Smart M.App that combines both of these fields. Learn more about Jose, his company Globalvision 5D, and their Smart M.App for organizing agricultural projects, called Agromapp.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I’m from Mexico City, a huge city where anything can happen. It’s a beautiful and rich city in many ways. We have lots of cultural places, music, artistic events, and museums. It is also an amazing place geographically speaking, because it is surrounded by volcanoes and mountains, and it was built above a lake. Nowadays, it has hidden rivers below the concrete surface, in stands 2,200 meters above sea level in a seismic zone with more than 15 million people! Now you have an idea about the infrastructure and other geospatial challenges we face every day and enjoy at the same time.
Q: Where did you attend school and what did you study? Why did you choose this subject?
A: I’m a Geophysical Engineer from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and recently I took courses on big data at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, two of the most important universities in my country. I like studying the earth and detecting resources using indirect methods. Data processing has been my favorite subject because it gives me the chance to find new ways to answer questions about new topics. Due to certain situations, I changed my professional career to create commercial software. I have created products from scratch, such as a CRM and ERP, and I have solved other diverse problems. This led me to new information systems trends like big data and unstructured data, IoT, machine learning and the data analytics world. I’m coming back to my roots, but now creating more interesting solutions.
Q: Where do you currently work? What is your job? What are your responsibilities?
A: Formerly, I founded Clarisoft, a software development and eLearning company for commercial solutions. As I found the geospatial market very interesting, I decided to build a new company in that space, called Globalvision 5D. I’m responsible for creating the solutions we offer now, from commercial solutions like location analytics to complex ones, like GEOINT that might use big data techniques, IoT, social networks, web data and machine learning integration. As a matter of fact, I started the IGNITE contest with Clarisoft, but my partners and I are now going to create this M.App and future M.Apps under Globalvision 5D’s name.
Q: What are some of your favorite things to do during your free time?
A: I love sports and I enjoy running. Every year, I complete a half marathon or a whole one. Many ideas come to me while running long distances.
Q: Where did your interest in geospatial/mapping/information services come from?
A: During my big data courses, we covered geospatial-related topics that I would discuss with my “geo” friends. They began to apply new remote sensing techniques for agriculture, called precision agriculture. We found a potential customer and started to develop the Agromapp idea. As we started to explore the idea, we found that there are many industries that also require the use of geospatial variables to answer their business questions.
Q: How did you hear about IGNITE?
A: A “geo” friend told me about new cloud-based geospatial tools that could be interesting. When I attended the IGNITE session I saw many similarities to today’s BI tools like Tableau or Qlik Sense, but Hexagon Geospatial has very important strengths in mapping. After learning more about Hexagon Smart M.Apps, I decided to move forward with my Agromapp idea.
Q: Why are you excited about this competition?
A: We are in the initial steps of deciding how to deal with diverse and integrated data, and how we are going to make it easily accessible from anywhere. It may be risky to use cloud solutions for GIS systems, but everything tells us it’s the right way to go. By offering cloud solutions, we can reach diverse markets and offer more democratic solutions by making them more accessible and cutting costs. Because of this, there are many challenges in the future, but there are many opportunities as well.
Q: What is the problem your Smart M.App addresses?
A: Many agronomists or agro-companies use imagery from drones that is seldom processed. Our Smart M.App, Agromapp uses precision agriculture techniques to increase efficiency in crop tracking and monitoring. As a cloud-based solution, data collected can be visible to all people involved with the project. Agromapp also combines technical and business data to give agronomists and agro-companies a better understanding of all actions taken and the end results, such as costs versus benefits.
Q: What is your Smart M.App called?
Q: What IGNITE Theme does it support?
Q: What does it do?
A: Agromapp is a solution to help decision-makers in agricultural projects establish goals and activities that will help control crops, eliminate disease, take soil condition measurements, harvest crops, and much more. It allows users to store maps and processed images in one place, and support decisions about which actions need to be taken. It also compiles documents, field imagery, and costs originated from implemented actions and unexpected incidents. Agromapp allows field personnel and owners to keep track of progress and results of the project. Overall, it will help increase efficiency, productivity and visibility.
Q: What do you hope to accomplish with your Smart M.App?
A: We have high expectations. Our business intelligence, combined with our experience with traditional GIS gives us an edge. We’re taking a risk by going with the new 5D solutions paradigm, but during the Geospatial Keynote at HxGN LIVE, President Mladen said that “form-givers” should do just that.