FLOW 1.12 brings massive changes to file management and the options for file exporting and storage. Thanks to a new device-independent FLOW Storage feature, all FLOW devices are able to reliably store the various traffic data and outputs from the real-time analysis locally on the device on hard drivers or SD cards. This important concept for local data management will be further used in coming functions for traffic safety and traffic violation detection. The first data producer, which stores the data to FLOW Storage, is a new type of sink - Trajectory sink. Trajectory sink gathers raw trajectories for a defined time slot in TLGX format, thus with 1.12 you can export the trajectories from any FLOW device and open the results in the TrafficSurvey Viewer for further offline analysis. Apart from the new features, FLOW 1.12 focused on improving stability, optimization of data transfers between Insights and FLOW devices and video analytic performance. Next, we will explain the new features in FLOW 1.12 in more detail.
FLOW Storage - local space for analytics outputs
FLOW Storage is a device-independent local space for storing any type of traffic data produced by the analytics. This is a new form of storing traffic data but also parking, retail or security data. Each defined analytics has its own storage, but the total capacity is shared among the individual cameras(analytics) and the actual size depends on the specific FLOW device. The storage size can be adjusted based on customers' needs. For straightforward data management and easy use, FLOW Storage has a flat structure with a grouping feature. A group is an abstract entity representing a set of stored objects which are somehow related. For example, a group can be an image and csv file and any other additional information related to the individual case of a traffic violation.
FLOW Storage is accessible via FLOW Insights in the main panel of the analytics. Here you can easily filter the stored objects by the sink ID that created the file (producer id), type, name, date of creation, and other attributes. So far, you can find the tlgx files created by trajectory sinks in storage. Over time more file types will be added for traffic evidence and traffic statistics gathering such as pictures and excel files.
To help you navigate the storage we have added multiple filtering options and a search bar allowing you to easily find the file you are looking for. The search bar works like a regular search bar allowing you to find files based on the name. You can also filter the storage by the time of creation, by group, and by size.
The trajectory sink is a special type of sink that allows the user to get raw trajectory data and save them on the device running the analytics. There are multiple benefits to having this functionality. First is that you can store the data long-term and aggregate data from specific time periods and second, you can open these files in the TrafficViewer program and use some of the more advanced functionalities such as gap times, acceleration, and safety analysis if you georegister your footage.
To set up the sink, drag and drop the sink on the operator you want to gather trajectories from, and in the sink settings you need to first enable it and then set the period for which to record the data. The current limit is 5000 trajectories per file so if this number of trajectories is not enough for the specified timeframe new files will be created for every 5000 trajectories and all of these files will be created in the same group. Files from the same group can be easily downloaded together and then imported into the TrafficSurvey viewer to where you can analyze all the data together.
Once the files are created, they are accessible in the storage. The raw trajectory file names are created in the following format: [sinkId]_[yyyy-MM-dd-hh-mm-ss-zzz].tlgx. Please note that these files only include static images compared to the regular analyses that you get from our TrafficSurvey where the trajectories can be played back live together with the video. The reason for this is file size efficiency as if we had to store video data as well the storage would need to be 100-1000x larger and it would be nearly impossible to download the data.
This way you can gather the most important part of the data - the raw trajectories which can then be used for all the available types of traffic analysis including counts, speed measuring, getting OD data, Safety Analysis such as TTC, PET, gap times and more. The tlgx can be opened with our TrafficSurvey viewer program used for advanced traffic analysis which you can download here. To learn how you can analyze data using TrafficSurvey viewer please refer to our help section.
One of the other changes worth mentioning is that the network communication between the FLOW node and BLOCK has been optimized reducing the bandwidth requirements. Thanks to these changes you can now connect to FLOW edge devices even with mobile internet with data transfer speed under 512Kbit/s (such as LTE) and still be able to configure it without any problems. For the TrafficEnterprise system with hundreds of cameras a connection with a speed of at least 6 MBit/s is sufficient.
We are dedicated to continually improving FLOW. To see the list of FLOW versions released click here. What do you think about the tlgx sink functionality? What features would you like to see next? Let us know in the chat by using the icon on the bottom right or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Make sure to follow us on Linkedin for more updates.
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