mapFeeder and Fulcrum for Seamless Location Data Management and Field Data Collection

mapFeeder is a location based task tracking and data management studio served to you through an internet web browser. Simple maps, powerful user driven searching capabilities, historic data tracking and reporting make mapFeeder ideal for managing your spatial / GIS data.

With many of our mapFeeder customers needing field data capture capability, it made perfect sense to integrate a mobile, native application with mapFeeder. In 2012, we began a partnership with Fulcrum, an elegant mobile app with advanced data collection capabilities, and added it into our software stack offering. By synchronizing mapFeeder with Fulcrum, our customers can get near real-time data using mapFeeder back in the office.


Since then RESPEC has deployed mapFeeder and Fulcrum for dozens of applications such as water quality, asset management, permitting, best management practices, mining and more.

With the ease of use, disconnected editing and robust tools, Fulcrum has allowed us to bring field data capture to our clients in an economical manner.

The City of Andover, MN has been using RESPEC’s mapFeeder application to track and manage their traffic signs. Andover is a diverse city with the southern half of the city heavily developed with residential, business, and industrial uses. The northern half is comprised of larger lots and farmland. The city uses mapFeeder to track inspections and maintenance needs for the over 7,000 signs they manage.

The sign management team can search many date related attributes such as last maintenance activity, date installed, date replaced and also when the sign was retired. They can also search by many other attributes such as MUTCD code, sheeting, zone, .etc as well as using the interactive map to select signs. mapFeeder’s easy to use interface allows the user to create complex queries which they can save for use at a later date. Further, mapFeeder allows for ad-hoc reports which can be exported to Excel, CSV, or PDF.

mapFeeder is perfect for this task as each inspection and maintenance need is captured in the database allowing the city to view historic information about each sign. mapFeeder more than fills the requirements of the FHWA requirements to track traffic signs to ensure the reflectivity is up to the standards making the road safe for travelers.

In the field, the sign technician’s use the mobile app Fulcrum. Fulcrum is an elegant mobile app with advanced data collection capabilities and disconnected editing. mapFeeder “speaks” to Fulcrum so all data entered in the field is synchronized with the mapFeeder database for near real-time data management by users back in the office — a seamless integration.

Fulcrum is used in an iPad with an ISX Blue GPS to capture sign information, inspection and maintenance needs. The iSX Blue is connected to the iPad via Bluetooth technology and overrides the GPS on the device to capture high accuracy data points. The combination of mapFeeder, Fulcrum, iSX Blue GPS and iPad have made the job of Andover’s sign management team seamless and increased their efficiencies from sign install to sign maintenance.

mapFeeder Implements Laserfiche Connectivity

Laserfiche is a powerful document management system which many organizations have used to scan and manage their critical documents. There are many reasons to transfer your paper documents into electronic files:

  • Amount of space physical documents take can be substantial

  • Damage to documents from natural disasters  

  • Time consuming to search through file cabinets, folders and paper documents

  • Must be on-site to access documents

  • Document retention schedules

RESPEC has implemented connectivy with Laserfiche into mapFeeder.  This connectivity allows users of mapFeeder to access their scanned documents in the Laserfiche Web Portal from the mapFeeder interactive web mapping window.   Please see the short video below to see this functionality in action.

Flat Rock Geographics Joins RESPEC!

As of October 1, 2015, Flat Rock Geographics is a part of the RESPEC Team! First established in 2003, Flat Rock Geographics is a geospatial software and services company that specializes in developing web-based and mobile mapping applications to support applied geographic analysis, business intelligence, asset management, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data creation and management. 

With the acquisition of Flat Rock, RESPEC continues our strategic objective of integrating technology into our water, mining, and energy markets to better serve our private and public clients.

MN Solar Suitability Application

Minnesota Statewide Solar Suitability application for consumers

Flat Rock Geographics is working with University of Minnesota and CERTs to update and improve the current Solar Suitability application.  This application allows consumers and solar installers to see how suitable their home might be for solar technology.  The Minnesota Department of Commerce is funding this project to leverage the statewide solar suitability dataset created at statewide solar suitability dataset created by a group of talented Master of GIS Students.

The goal is to make the information readily available on a user friendly application for consumers even when using mobile devices.  A responsive design will be implemented to give the user the same experience no matter what type of device they are on.

Other enhancements include displaying monthly solar values, showing number of non-sun hours, graphing, reporting and even payback calculations.

Please see the application HERE and the Minnesota State Fair in the EcoExperience Building .

Update on the Minnesota Statewide Geospatial Advisory Council

As a private sector representative on the Minnesota Statewide Geospatial Advisory Council it is my duty to inform others about what we are doing at the state level when it comes to geospatial technology.  Specifics about the council can be seen at the website.  If there are any private sector businesses that have ideas of how the council can help, please respond to this blog or privately at .

Here is a brief overview from the recent meeting.

Statewide parks and trails are a hot topic. Several applications to help folks find park amenities they are looking for are in the works.  GIS and web applications are also being used to keep track of funds spent on capitol improvements.

The Minnesota Geospatial Commons is up and running as the "one stop shop" for geospatial data in Minnesota.  Users from all sectors are encouraged to use the Commons to not only find data but also disseminate their data if they are willing to share.  The current debate is how complete the metadata must be to upload to the commons.  Let me know if you have an opinion on this.

NextGen 9-1-1 is another hot topic as many agencies in Minnesota are moving to a GIS based system. This is a difficult nut to crack as we know emergencies do not stop at borders. Finding a common system between entities within the state as well as bordering states will be an obstacle to overcome.  Regional kickoff meetings regarding implementation are coming in April.

The end of term for current members in the Geospatial Advisory Council are coming fast.  If you are interested in being on the council forms are due by May 24th so please see the Secretary of State website for more information.  

The next meeting is June 24th so tune back in for an update.



News Flash! Wisconsin APWA Spring Conference

Flat Rock Geographics will be attending the 2013 American Public Works Association (Wisconsin Chapter) Spring Conference May 8-10 in La Crosse, Wisconsin. The APWA Wisconsin Spring Conference provides a great opportunity for us to exhibit our products and services to Public Works officials who are responsible for specifying and/or purchasing equipment, materials and services related…

News Flash! FOSS4G-NA Conference

Flat Rock Geographics will be attending the 2013 Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial North American Conference (FOSS4G-NA) May 22-24 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  This conference is the annual gathering of open source geospatial developers, users and leaders who are at the forefront of free and open source software for geospatial applications. FOSS4G-NA 2013 will…

Review: APWA/ISOSWO Joint Spring Conference

In March, Flat Rock Geographics attended the 2013 APWA/ISOWO Joint Spring Conference in West Des Moines, Iowa.  This was a co-sponsored event between the Iowa Chapter of the American Public Works Association (APWA) and the Iowa Society of Solid Waste Operations (ISOSWO).  The conference provided the opportunity for professionals from the worlds of public works,…

Minnesota Wetland Conference

In January, Flat Rock Geographics participated in the 6th Annual Minnesota Wetland Conference held at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chanhassen, Minnesota. Our staff member, Justin Hawley March (GIS Specialist), gave a presentation with Tim Kelly, Administrator of the Coon Creek Watershed District, which focused on using geoprocessing techniques that incorporate readily available…

2013 City Engineers Association of Minnesota Conference

Earlier this year, Flat Rock Geographics attended the 2013 City Engineers Association of Minnesota (CEAM) Annual Conference at the Eagle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.  Attendees gathered at this annual meeting to learn about what is happening in the engineering industry as it relates to the world around them. Our President, Blaine Hackett,…

2013 Wisconsin Land Information Association Conference

In February, Flat Rock Geographics attended the 26th Annual Wisconsin Land Information Association (WLIA) Conference in Lake Geneva, WI.  This event is the premier GIS conference in Wisconsin, emphasizing local, regional, state and federal trends and applications.  This year’s conference theme was “be BOLD – Integrating, Coordinating and Communicating” and Flat Rock certainly made its…