“We enable the future of visual inspections. By enabling we do not mean doing it ourselves, but bringing companies together through relevant partnerships.“
– Ken Falk
Learn more on: www.scopito.com
Ken Falk – CEO and Founder of Scopito
Tell us something about your current position and your professional background.
Ken Falk: I am the founder & CEO of Scopito – The leading software platform to store, analyze & share your visual inspections. I have a background in computer engineering and started my career at Systematic developing mission-critical systems for the defense industry. In 2014 I founded Heliscope which offered drone inspections as a service. Our focus was purely on power line inspections. Because of this focus, we realized very early that the drone inspection market would be limited by an effective way to manage your data. In the summer of 2016, we sold our inspections business to the leading land surveying company in Denmark – GeoPartner. From this moment we have focused on making Scopito available to drone operators and utility companies that face similar problems with effectively managing thousands or even millions of inspection images.
What are your perspectives on UAS in the next years?
Ken Falk: Automation is crucial to making drone companies profitable. That goes for the actual flights as well as post-flight data analysis & reporting. The commercial UAV industry has so far been driven by tech companies who are very enthusiastic about the technology. Many established inspection companies are now realizing they need to implement a drone strategy if they want to be in business in 5-10 years. We will see consolidation between tech companies and established companies that strategically need to join the party. There will be a huge focus on software & data analysis.
What do you think will be your biggest challenge in the areas you operate in?
Ken Falk: The industry presents many promising showcases to automated drone inspections and data analysis. We will face the challenge of converting impressive features into solutions that work effectively in existing client environments. Therefore, our focus should be on creating solutions that are easy to use, with lean and scalable workflows and very importantly; Solutions must integrate with existing products.
Will AI/deep learning be a standard technology for data management and how important is the topic liability in your company’s strategy?
Ken Falk: Short answer, yes. AI will be a cornerstone of data analysis. We believe that until we have enough training data AI will be complemented by traditional image analysis. Automation has been a clear strategy from the beginning at Scopito. Although image analysis is still mostly a manual process today we are gathering a huge amount of annotated data that can be used to train AI algorithms. Scopito is an open platform where we bring together drone operators, infrastructure owner and algorithm developers. We sincerely believe that by collaborating we can make better solutions and much faster than companies wanting to do everything themselves.
How would you rank the maturity level (from 1 to 10; 10 for very mature) of AI or deep learning algorithms? Is it just at the beginning or already a well-accepted technology?
Ken Falk: I would say we are in the introduction phase for visual inspections. Companies are showcasing awesome automated image analysis. However, we have yet to see a working solution in a client environment. There are many companies working very hard to make this happen but most of what you see on websites is still slideware. If you have a working solution please contact us. We would love to work together! The need is there, the competition is vast, and a lot more has yet to be done – so let’s say right now is a 2 out of 10.