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The upload procedure consists of two distinct steps:
Image Quality Check
The quality check is critical for project success and can be done quickly. The success of a project largely depends on image acquisition quality. Low-quality image sets result in low-resolution, inaccurate output with holes and artefacts. At the same time, they require significantly more processing time and resources, and in severe cases processing may fail altogether.
The purpose of the quality check is to ensure that all image sets fulfil basic quality requirements before they are uploaded and resources are committed to processing them. Identifying issues early on also allows pilots to correct them (i.e. recapture a flight, add manually captured images, etc.) and thus to minimise project delays.
The quality check must be performed prior to uploading the images. The recommended application for viewing these images is called nomacs which can be downloaded here. Using this application on your PC check that your image sets meet the following requirements:
- Ensure that for the entire image set the image aspect ratio is 3:2 and that all images are JPEG files.
- Also, make sure that all images were captured using the same exposure settings (i.e. ISO, aperture and shutter speed must not vary between images).
- For each mission component (i.e. site overview orbit, tower scan, RAD scan):
- Randomly open a few images and zoom in to 100% to check their sharpness.
- Also check their exposure (they should have been captured at ISO100 and with the aperture set to F4). Make sure the shadow side of the tower is not too dark (i.e that no detail is lost in the shadows) and that its bright side is not overexposed (i.e. no information is lost due to blown out highlights).
- Using the viewing features of your file manager (see screenshot below):
- Check that the tower is adequately centred on all images. While it is acceptable if the tower is shifted to the left or right, it should always be fully within the image frame (i.e. not cut off at the left or right image border).
- Visually check that the the gimbal angle used to capture the Final Run is much flatter than the angle used for the Main Run (i.e. you did not forget to set the correct gimbal angle). Typically, the sky should fill approximately the top third of the image frame.
- If you are using the nomacs viewer you can press the "H" button to bring up the histogram which can be used to ensure that the images being uploaded are not overexposed. The image below shows an example of the histogram alongside the image.
- To check if the image is overexposed, crop the image at the brightest part of the tower (usually a panel at the top on the sunny side) and check the histogram. Ensure that the peak is not clipping for optimal results.
- If you have used ground control points, check that they are clearly visible in several images of both the Calibration Flight and the Main Run.
Uploading Your Files
The SiteSee Uploader runs in most modern Internet browsers and works best on a PC. You must use the SiteSee Uploader to upload your images. The captures apps cannot be used to upload images.
To avoid interrupting an upload, please refrain from doing any of the following while the upload is in progress:
- Turning off your PC or putting it in sleep mode
- Closing the internet browser window or the tab that runs the Uploader
- Refreshing/reloading the browser
- Turning off the internet connection of your PC
To upload your images and ground control point (GCP) files, open the SiteSee Web App in your PC’s internet browser, then follow these steps:
- In the drop-down menu select ‘Upload’.
- Search for the job you have been allocated (either by its job number or site name), then click ‘UPLOADER’. Note that you will only see jobs that have been allocated to you by SiteSee. If no job has been allocated yet, contact SiteSee Support.
- In the page title, check that the job number is correct. This is particularly important if you have been allocated several jobs.
- Click ‘Choose Files’, then select all image files you would like to upload. If your images are contained in multiple folders (e.g. 100MEDIA, 101MEDIA, etc.), repeat this step for each folder. Note that if some of your images have the same name, the SiteSee Uploader will be able to handle them correctly (i.e. it is not necessary to rename images with redundant file names).
Important - Apple Mac Users
An anomaly of the macOS results in the Command+A command not selecting all files in a given folder. The workaround is to press Command+A multiple times until all files are selected.
If you have an unreliable internet connection: Instead of uploading all files at once, divide the image set into small batches of, for example, one hundred images, then upload each batch individually. Do not finalise the upload until you have successfully uploaded all batches.
When you add files, the SiteSee Uploader automatically checks whether the image locations match the site location. The green checkmark indicates that the files are valid. If a location mismatch is detected, the affected files are marked with red warning icons. For information about the error detected, hover the mouse pointer over the warning icons.
- If you have used ground control points (GCPs), click ‘Choose Files’ again and add the GCP files. They must always include a comma-delimited text file (extension CSV) in the format generated by Propeller AeroPoints and, if available, the corresponding PDF file. When you add the GCP files, the SiteSee Uploader automatically checks whether the GCP locations match the site location. A green checkmark indicates that this is the case. If a location mismatch is detected, the CSV file is marked with a red warning icon. For more information, hover the mouse pointer over the warning icon.
- If you captured either a panorama or an orthomosaic, you must add all images belonging to either mission type together. For example, adding some images belonging a panorama capture, followed by images of the tower capture and then the remaining images of the panorama capture will result in the incorrect categorisation of your image set.
- If you accidentally added invalid files, clear the Local Files list and start over by refreshing your internet browser.
There currently is no option to delete images from the list. If you made a mistake and want to start over, simply reload the page in your browser. This will clear the list.
- In the list labelled ‘Local Files’, select the files you want to upload. Usually this will be all files listed. To select all files, tick the top checkbox next to the column labelled ‘Name’.
- Optional: In the comments box at the bottom enter any information concerning the image set you wish to provide (press <Enter> for a line break), then click ‘Save Comment’.
- If your internet connection is slow, tick ‘Check this if your internet connection is slow’.
- Click ‘Upload’. Once the upload has started, the section labelled ‘Upload Log’ at the bottom of the screen shows the upload progress.
If the files you selected for uploading include invalid files (e.g. files with a red warning icon, or a GCP file with a logging period that does not match the image capture period), an error message such as the one below will be shown. Close the error message and check that you added the correct files to the Local Files list. If only a few files are invalid, simply uncheck them and add the correct versions to the list. If many files are invalid, we recommend that you start over (i.e. refresh your browser, then go to Step 4 above). Although generally not recommended, you can also ignore the error by clicking 'Continue Upload'.
- Upon successful completion of the upload, the message ‘All files have been successfully uploaded’ will be displayed. The uploaded files will also appear in the ‘Uploaded Files’ list.
If necessary, you can delete uploaded files by selecting them in the ‘Uploaded Files’ list and clicking ‘Delete’.
- If some images failed to upload (e.g. if the upload was interrupted by the user or due to an internet outage), the following warning will be displayed: ‘There are [number] files missing. Please upload the remaining files.’ Click on ‘Missing Files’ to see which files failed to upload, then repeat the steps above to upload them.
If Many Files Failed to Upload
If many files failed to upload, going through the ‘Missing Files’ list to determine which files are missing can be difficult and time-consuming. You may find it easier to delete all already uploaded files and to start over. To delete all files, in the ‘Uploaded Files’ list, select all files by ticking the top checkbox next to the column labelled ‘Name’, then click ‘Delete’. This step is important to prevent redundant files. When the Uploader has finished deleting the already uploaded files, it will clear the ‘Uploaded Files’ list. You are now ready to re-upload the complete image set.
- Click ‘Finalise Upload’.
This step is crucial for marking the upload as complete. After an upload has been finalised it cannot be edited and no more files can be added; so always perform this step last.
Now is a great time to read our guide on how to use the SiteSee Web Portal to view the completed 3D model and to access technical reports.