Journal archives for November 2019

November 10, 2019

how many map tiles we generate per minute over

https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/open-test-of-map-tile-improvements/7833

Here’s a chart that shows how many map tiles we generate per minute over the last day (times are in EST). As shown here we’re generating up to about 3000 tiles per minute, or 50 tiles per second. We’re also entering a slower time of year, so during busy months and certainly during events, we render much more than that. For reference, across all iNaturalist and partner websites, the API, and tiles, we process about 15,000 requests per minute (250/sec) right now, which means map tiles represent about 20% of all traffic.

h has me wondering if we need colour to distinguish kingdoms? Why not instead use colour to indicate density from sold blue for single obs to solid red for the highest density, then it will be a heat map similar to this:
ing relatively small squares. in the case of the new test squares, since the squares are relatively large (the tradeoff for clickability and speed of processing), i think a color gradient approach will look bad. below are examples that may help to show what i mean. these examples are using 4px x 4px squares, which are smaller than 8px x 8px squares, but are already clouding up the map. (they use a different color gradient than your example, but they are using iNat data, though probably are scaled a little differently than the test
https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/observation-density/6305/6
(compare the above examples to this: https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/observation-density/6305/6 1, which is a density map from GBIF using iNat data at very fine resolution – very beautiful, in my opinion, but very resource intensive to create and not clickable.)

https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/open-test-of-map-tile-improvements/7833

https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/looking-for-inaturalist-observation-map-visualisation-suggestions/7322/17

https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/cache-map-data-to-speed-up-loading-and-reduce-demand-on-inat-servers/7767/8

https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/how-do-i-find-topics-that-ive-responded-to/7677/3
Good to know that it existst but a bit hard to find…THis forum software is so weird. BlockquoteYou can also go to your profile and under Activity, click Replies: https://forum.inaturalist.org/u/oneanttofew/activity/replies

You can also go to your profile and under Activity, click Replies: https://forum.inaturalist.org/u/oneanttofew/activity/replies

Posted on November 10, 2019 10:47 by ahospers ahospers | 0 comments | Leave a comment

November 15, 2019

Swift libraries remove Restkit, the third-party library

I agree that it’s a bummer when features are pulled, but please understand that I did this for a very good reason. iOS 13 deprecated a number of older developer libraries, and the third-party library we were using to do multi-photo selection was hit hard. It was causing significant amounts of instability, crashes in the app in unpredictable ways, etc. In order to bring multi-photo selection back, I’m either going to have to re-implement that whole library, or find a new third-party library. Both will take time, and are further complicated by the fact that we can’t use Swift libraries in the iOS app right now, since one of the other third-party libraries we’re using (RestKit) won’t compile with Swift. I’ve been working on removing this problematic library for a while now, but it’s slow going because we use it a ton.

So my plan is to keep working to remove Restkit, the third-party library that won’t compile with Swift, so that in the future I’ll be able to choose from the vast menu of Swift libraries that do camera/photo library picker stuff, with lots of support for multi-photo selection.

Posted on November 15, 2019 20:36 by ahospers ahospers | 2 comments | Leave a comment

November 16, 2019

Funding, Infrastructure costs, Images on Amazon

Thanks for your thoughtful consideration of the kinds of nonprofits you support.

For the last three years, iNaturalist has been almost entirely grant funded from individual philanthropists (many with a long history of philanthropy through the California Academy of Sciences), the National Geographic Society, foundations such as the Moore Foundation, and tech companies such as Microsoft through their tAI for Earth initiative, and Google through their tGeo for Good initiative. We also have some project-based funding like the funds we received from the World Wildlife Fund to develop Seek 2.0.

While individual donations from the iNaturalist community currently constitute a small percentage of our overall revenue, we’d love to see that percentage grow. The more sustaining donors we have, the less time we and the development team at CAS have to spend wondering how to meet the next year’s budget requirements.

As a department of the California Academy of Sciences, 15% of additional funds we bring in go toward overhead for CalAcademy, and this includes individual donations. In addition to financial support, they provide office space, legal services, accounting, communications support, and other functions, so the overhead is a way that iNaturalist pays into those costs shared across the institution. The remaining 85% stays within the department to cover staff and operational expenses, like paying Discourse to host this forum, or paying Amazon for image hosting.

The single largest expense for iNaturalist is personnel. iNaturalist has 8 full-time staff in the USA (6 in the Bay Area, 2 remote on the East Coast) and one contractor.

For the CalAcademy fiscal year July 2018 - June 2019, iNaturalist spent $174,000 on infrastructure and miscellaneous expenses. These are the non-personnel related expenses. Like almost everything else about iNaturalist (e.g. users, data, traffic)—except the number of staff— these costs are almost doubling each year.

Donating to iNaturalist 1 (or not) is of course a personal choice. We hope this helps inform your decision. We understand that users have different means and appreciate all of the many ways that people support iNaturalist, financial or otherwise.

Posted on November 16, 2019 21:36 by ahospers ahospers | 2 comments | Leave a comment