Networking chats

In April the #scenefromabove podcast has held a series of short networking chats. I implemented these, along with co-host Andrew Cutts, in March when the lock downs around the world started to come into effect. There will likely be a couple more chats in May.

  • Where is the growth in the EO sector?

The first session saw a bunch of listeners and Twitter account followers come together to discuss growth in the EO sector.  Initially we asked whether we are we talking about commercial growth? Or organisational growth? Or the growth in knowledge? What was interesting was the fact that the chat started to coalesce around the need to grow the education sector in line with modern commercial technologies, methods and skills as a disconnect is starting to be noticed and students are demanding relevant skills. There was also a fun discussion about radar systems and how important they have become, and continue to be.

  • Cool EO projects on GitHub

This was a fascinating session where we told each other about some of the less well known projects and software that we have discovered on GitHub. The chat covered all sorts of different areas, from Google Earth Engine to SAR, from GeoRust to Sentinel, and from deep learning to GDAL.

Off the back of the session my podcast co-host Andrew started to pull together a community list of awesome-earthobservation-code. This pulls together some of the links discussed in the get together, but also adds in many (many!) more. Feel free to add the links that you think should be there.

  • Are EO businesses really self-sustaining?

The final session in April discussed the concepts around creating (and maintaining) self-sustaining businesses. The main point was that for automated service based companies to be successful, there needs to be a user community that is willing and able to pay for that service, be it a subscription or other model. The precedent has been for project based work to outweigh the provision of automated service, and for open data to become the norm so there needs to be a tangible benefit for the user to pay.


All three sessions have been really interesting, and it’s been wonderful meeting some of our podcast listeners in person. Keep an eye on Twitter and Linked in for announcements of future events!