Fulcrum Updates

Fulcrum update · March 20, 2015

Send Fulcrum Field Data to Hundreds of Apps with Zapier

Working with forms in the field has always been a challenge. Far too often, people still use pen and paper to capture on the field, then type up their results when they're back in the office. That's a burden at best—but you should be thinking of data...read more
Matthew Guay
Written by Matthew GuayLast updated September 8, 2015

Knowing where something happened can often be just as important as knowing when or how it happened. But if you're using paper forms or a standard online form to gather data about your work, odds are you're not keeping track of where you filled out the form. Perhaps you'll enter a job site's address and hope Google Maps understands it next time, or at best you're checking a GPS and writing down coordinates—or marking where inside a building you performed your job.

Fulcrum has better options. As a mobile form app designed for gather data on the go, it can tap into your phone's GPS and record precisely where data was collected automatically. Then, it lets you pinpoint that location on a map, even if you're in a remote area with poor Google Maps coverage—or inside a facility. It includes data from Mapbox, MapQuest, and OpenStreetMap, then you can upload your own .mbtiles map texture files with detailed location or building maps. That lets you precisely tag where you worked no matter where you are. And it all works offline, letting you conduct research in remote places and still gather all the data you need.

You'll need to collect more than just locations, of course. As with most form builders for mobile data collection, Fulcrum lets you take photos, scan QR and barcodes, and capture signatures right from your form, along with standard text data. It even lets you capture and upload videos, and Fulcrum adds geotag info to your videos while they're being captured.

Collecting data is only half of the challenge. Once your field work is done, you'll have to turn your data into documents, plot it on maps, and more. Fulcrum has features to help there, too. You can create your own PDF document templates, and then whenever a form is filled out Fulcrum can use the form data to fill in the PDF template blanks and create a custom invoice, report, work order, or anything else you need right from your mobile device. You'll never have to copy and paste form data into Word again.

Plotting your captured data is easy, too. In Fulcrum's web app, you can visualize your data entries on any of Fulcrum's built-in map services or your custom maps. Or, Fulcrum can sync your form data to CartoDB, Arc2Earth, and more to plot your data, create map visualizations, monitor team activity, and more. Or, you can export data in CSV, Shapefile, KML, GeoJSON and other popular formats to plot data in your own apps.

Fulcrum is a great tool for making mobile data capture forms, one that's especially great at mapping. If you need to gather data remotely and know exactly where it was gathered, Fulcrum's tools can help you never worry you overlooked anything. You'll just have to fill out your forms, and Fulcrum will take care of your data and mapping needs automatically.

Have any feedback on this overview, or something we should change? Let us know!

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Fulcrum is a mobile data collection tool that allows users to easily design custom forms and quickly conduct field data collection on Android and iOS. Fulcrum works in connected and disconnected environments.