What’s New in January 2020? New Year, New Propeller Features

It’s a new year, and we’re coming in strong with some really awesome features that’ll help make life easier on the worksite for you and your team. 

Before saying goodbye to 2019, we released the much-awaited PDF Map Export feature, but after synthesizing all the great customer feedback we received, we’ve broadened its functionality. 

Our efforts to make the design surface experience as smooth and intuitive as possible continues with several new features. This includes a clamp tool that lets you lock frequently used design layers to the ground surface and a functionality that auto-generates boundaries for those files. 

Without further ado, let’s dive into January’s additions, exploring how they work in the wild and how each tool fits into your existing workflow. 


Context and clarity with PDF Maps

Maintaining open communication channels between the office and the field is an ongoing challenge for most worksites. Often project data is distributed across the worksite through a software platform, but most software platforms require a particular level of technical know-how to use. 

The Propeller Platform supports quick, easy sharing and reporting when the communication is traveling from one device to another, but not all professionals in the field have access to a device. But, they all have one thing in common—they all need up-to-date information about progress, material movement, and how their role benefits the big picture. 

pdf map export propeller

To combat the disconnect, we introduced a PDF Map Export tool that releases worksite data from confines of a screen. With a PDF map of your most recent aerial survey, you can print it off, carry it out to remote locations, and make sure that data gets in front of the right people. 

The best part? Anyone, regardless of their technical experience, can create and export site maps, customized with design files, linework, and utilities overlaid, in just a few clicks.

pdf map export with linework

This month the PDF Map Export got even better. Yes, you can still create, print, and share high-res maps of your entire site, but now you can zoom in and export specific areas. This could be a safety hazard, a utility line, anything you want to note.  

Why not try it out for yourself? You can create your first map right now, or if you feel like you need a little more guidance, give this help article a read.


New: Lock the layers you use everyday

Design files are arguably your most important project documents—they keep projects focused, teams on the same page, and help you quantify progress. Without a clear idea of where you’ll end up, there’s baseline to gauge how far you’ve come. 

They also serve as a point of reference and tether to the whole worksite ecosystem. Most skilled workers are only ever working in their corner of the world on their particular project, making it hard to stay connected to the much larger project at play. 

Propeller users have always been able to upload design surfaces, but starting this January, users can lock their most used design layers to the ground surface you’re working on. This way you can quickly pick up where you left off. 

With locked layers everything is right where you need it, every time you log in so you can get right back to analyzing your site. 


New: Auto-generated boundaries for design surfaces

We’ve talked about locked layers, but that’s not the only added design surface functionality this month. 

We also implemented a feature that auto-generates boundaries for design surfaces. With the auto-generated boundaries, you can convert DXF or TTM design surfaces you’re working with to a measurement in just a few clicks. This makes it way easier to measure and track progress against a DXF or TTM design. 

locked design layers

Now, a polygon boundary is automatically generated around any DXF or TTM surface that’s been uploaded and selected in the Viewer. Simply right-click on the dashed yellow line that outlines any uploaded DXF/TTM surface for a quick and accurate way to convert it to a measurement in a few clicks. A polygon boundary is automatically generated around any DXF or TTM surface that’s been uploaded to 

With faster access to progress data, you can refocus the time and energy you save to dive deeper into your flyover data and explore other platform tools you maybe haven’t incorporated into your workflow yet. 

What’s next? 

There’s a lot of exciting stuff on the horizon for Propeller customers, and we promise to keep you up to date on all the latest and greatest. We’re always working to improve the Propeller Platform experience, and the best way for us to do that is with feedback from you on what’s working and what needs fine-tuning. 

construction site from above

This year will be the year of accessibility. We want everyone to have access to the data they need to do their job safety and do their job efficiently, while staying connected to all the moving parts on site. Stay tuned for further product releases, feature announcements, and platform updates. 

One thing we can tell you for sure—Propeller’s future is one you’ll want to be apart of. In the meantime, if you’d like a more technical explanation of all the new features we’ve talked about here, try these release notes

Have some feedback for our product team? Let them know what’s on your mind. 

Keep reading:

The Most Common Questions We Get From Propeller Customers Before They Commit
Improve Earthwork Estimates with Drone Data
Ten Things Propeller Gets You Post-Survey





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