An Overview of Ecosynth's Web Resources

Over time, Ecosynth has established several web resources related to its mission of developing tools to measure vegetation in three-dimensions. With today's advent of the EcosynthData data-sharing site, now may be a good time to inventory Ecosynth's currently available web resources that people may want to explore.

The following websites host Ecosynth's web resources:

ecosynth.org
wiki.ecosynth.org
code.ecosynth.org
data.ecosynth.org
3dvis.ecosynth.org

ecosynth.org: Community Site

The www.ecosynth.org website hosts a social networking platform that people can use to read and write blog posts, discuss topics on forums, share photos and videos, and learn about and from others interested in computer vision applications for ecology.


wiki.ecosynth.org: Information for How to Get Started

The wiki.ecosynth.org website hosts a MediaWiki application that contains information for how to get started with the same tools Ecosynth uses to conduct its own research. Information includes the types of hardware (UAVscameras) that Ecosynth uses, available computer vision software, as well as topics and techniques related to Forestry. The wiki has also become the designated site for code documentation. The EcosynthAerial python library documentation can be viewed on the wiki here.


code.ecosynth.org: Source Code for Ecosynth's Software Tools

The code.ecosynth.org website hosts the code repositories for our software tools. The current projects in the repository are:
- Ecosynther: a Computer Vision SfM program that generates point clouds from a set of images
- EcosynthBrowser: a web-application that allows people to explore point clouds through a web-browser
- EcosynthAerial: a Python library used to aid users at all stages of the Ecosynth pipeline with utilites and post-processing tools to transform, filter and characterize point clouds
- EcosynthData: a data-sharing site for related files and metadata. This project has since merged into EcosynthAerial under the "share" module


data.ecosynth.org: Dataset Repository

The data.ecosynth.org website hosts datasets uploaded by users that can be accessed publicly.  Right now, the best way to upload these "SynthSets" is through the EcosynthAerial GUI. Anyone interested upload datasets to data.ecosynth.org will need to contact Ecosynth, but anyone can host their own EcosynthData websites as long as they have their own server setup to allow SFTP access and host static webpages.

3dvis.ecosynth.org: Web-Viewable Point Cloud Application

The 3dvis.ecosynth.org website hosts a web application for viewing point clouds that have been uploaded to Ecosynth's database.  To query for a particular cloud, use the url (e.g. 3dvis.ecosynth.org/?table=kn_leaf_on  or  3dvis.ecosynth.org/?table=3 ).  People can currently view the point clouds from a range of perspectives and use a grid tool to perform some basic spatial measurements.  

Views: 219

Comment by Thorsten on August 29, 2014 at 4:19am

Hi Will,

data.ecosynth.org looks interesting! It might be a good idea to add some images of the results for each SynthSet below the map. 

You mention that one can host EcosynthData on an own website and that it is a static webpage. How is this static webpage generated? It would be great if you could post some details/howto/software.

Thanks a lot and kind regards,

Thorsten 

 

Comment by Will Bierbower on August 29, 2014 at 3:34pm

Hi Thorsten,

Thanks for the feedback and encouragement.  Agreed, I think that adding more images to the datasets is a good idea.

For EcosynthData, the idea is that someone could:

  1. Setup their own web-hosting platform
  2. Setup an apache server (or similar web server) to host a static website
  3. Enable SSH access for a particular user with the user's home directory set to the same folder as the static website
  4. Use EcosynthAerial's GUI - the "share" form - to upload a dataset (the share form accepts Host/Username/Password and uses those credentials to connect to any host - not just Ecosynth's own site).  A picture of which is shown on the right.

Assuming EcosynthAerial can connect to the website, it will look in the home directory to check that the site is initialized, and if not, it will upload the basic EcosynthData HTML and CSS code (the user will possibly want to modify the site's titles to their own name).  You can check out the EcosynthData site_html here (hopefully the link is persistent) buried deep in the EcosynthAerial code repository.

If it does detect that the site is initialized, then it will skip that step and upload a new synthset to the site.  What ends of happening over time is the web directory looks like this:

/index.html

/get_map_objects.php

/static/*

/1

/2

/3

/... and so on

where each numbered directory containing a "SynthSet" metadata page and the associated files.

Comment by Thorsten on September 3, 2014 at 7:38am

Hi Will,

thanks for the details! I'll have a closer look at EcosynthAerial. 

I like the approach and the fact that you can host it anywhere!

Concerning the images: If you present data it is always nice to have a photo of the landscape as well as the related mapping results. It should be easy to implement and would make it much more informative/intuitive. Maybe some slideshow would be perfect as it saves place on the webpage.

What about http://3dvis.ecosynth.org? How is this implemented?

Best regards,

Thorsten

PS: The link in 

  • As JSON metadata through the site's API here 

at http://data.ecosynth.org does not work properly

Comment by Erle Ellis on October 4, 2014 at 3:11pm

Hi Will,

Would be great to see some fixes of data.ecosynth.org: it doesnt seem to work.

Thanks,

-Erle

Comment by Will Bierbower on October 5, 2014 at 12:41pm

@Thorsten: Thanks! Sorry for the slow response - I'm getting started on a new job.  It's unlikely the functionality will be added by me, but I'm with you.  It can be difficult sometimes to make decisions about what functionality to add because it forces me to make technology and design decisions that can compete with our other interests for making the site easy for others to setup and maintain, usable on any webserver, as well as other time and resources constraints. I'm not sure what Ecosynth's policy is on code collaboration, but if you have coding experience and are interested enough in adding the feature into the code, I'm almost certain the collaboration would be greatly encouraged and appreciated.

The source code for 3dvis.ecosynth.org is in the EcosynthBrowser repository.  You would setup the directory to be publicly available on the web and also need to configure a MySQL database on the backend. We currently don't provide instructions for how to create the schema though.

@Erle:  Understood.  Working on the data transfer right now!

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