Why this Brooklyn startup is continuously making 3D maps of the entire city
Maps as we used to think of them may be donezo.
One of the companies revolutionizing the way people and machines will use maps in the future is based here in Brooklyn, and they just raised a truckload of money.
Carmera, founded by Ro Gupta and financed by Brooklyn’s Bre Pettis (of MakerBot fame) and Notation Capital, raised $6.4 million last month to continue its work building 3D maps for autonomous vehicles (and other customers!).
Gupta says that right now, highly detailed 3D maps are mostly proprietary to the major companies in the market, and exist mostly on small scales, where companies are testing their self-driving cars. Carmera, on the other hand, is doing it for all of New York City, and making the service available for anyone willing to pay.
“Every autonomous vehicle (AV) has to have real-time sensing and almost every single AV program also uses maps, because that gives them a recollection of the world around them and that allows them to confirm that what they’re seeing in real time matches with what’s on the map,” Gupta explained by phone recently. “The other benefit is to have information about what the vehicle can’t see yet, which might be a few blocks away or around a building, like a temporary road closure. It’s very useful to know about those things as far in advance as possible.”