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A Day in the Life of a VP of Product Engineering
Nov 3, 2023
5 min read
MAKER! MAKER! MAKER! What exactly is Mappedin Maker, and what benefits does it bring? Are you ready to delve into the details of our latest self-serve mapping product?
We recently had a conversation with Claudio Sa, our VP of Product Engineering, to provide you with a sneak peek into what to expect from the Mappedin Maker product launch. Discover his role and the exciting features of this innovative offering.
What is your role?
My primary focus is building the best indoor mapping platform in the world. I have the privilege of working with very talented people, and together, we design and develop incredible mapping technology. My job is about making indoor mapping so easy that anyone can do it, and meanwhile, enjoy doing it. When I'm not actively designing something, I'm talking about the design of something - this is what I'm most passionate about.
What does your typical workday look like?
My mornings start with attending stand-up meetings to ensure our products are operating smoothly, and we are still aligned with our product development priorities. Lately, the first thing I do when I wake up is check our new user count to see how many people have signed up to try Mappedin Maker since the previous night.
In the afternoon, I usually dive into product design work or join one of several slack huddles where the team is discussing a problem and possible solutions. With all the intricacies involved in building and launching something like Mappedin Maker, it means a significant chunk of my time is also dedicated to planning and mitigating risks.
What is Mappedin Maker and what problem does it aim to solve?
We have a big, ambitious goal - we believe that the world becomes safer, more efficient, and overall a better place when the indoors is made visible to people through maps. Mapping the indoors is hard. Today, indoor mapping requires sophisticated tools and expert knowledge; Maker is our solution to that. It gives people the ability to make indoor maps without any prior knowledge or complicated tools.
How does Maker differ from Mappedin’s other products?
Maker was designed from the ground up to be approachable to users, without prior training or expertise. It is a self-serve product meant to make mapping simple and scalable. In contrast, Mappedin's other products are aimed at enterprise customers who are looking for integrated solutions.
What industries or organizations can benefit from using Maker?
All of them. Every building should be mapped to enhance our lives. Whether it's saving time getting from Point A to Point B, or saving lives if you are a first responder responding to a call. With Maker, we empower people to create indoor maps themselves, and we can’t wait to see all the ways people will incorporate indoor maps into their work or personal lives.
Are there any specific use cases or success stories related to Maker?
We currently have a partnership with two former firefighters who have integrated Mappedin Maker maps into their school safety product. Some forward-thinking schools in the U.S. and Canada are also looking to follow this path.
In Florida, efforts are underway to map an entire county, allowing first responders in 911 incident dispatch to access these maps within their safety platform, providing precise geographical location information.
What did you find the most challenging when creating Maker?
Mapping indoor spaces is complicated. Making complicated things simple is hard. Reinventing the mapping process so that anyone can do it has been an incredible achievement by an incredible group of people working extremely hard for some time. One specific area of difficulty has been trying to figure out a simple way to ensure floors are aligned with each other. It's a surprisingly difficult thing to make easy to use.
Another challenge is our machine learning technology. How do you take a picture of a floor plan and turn it into an interactive map? We call it our AutoMap feature, and it’s currently available for free in beta. We are extremely proud of this achievement. Results may vary depending on the quality of the image you upload but we think we have something truly special and we are making incredible advances in this area week to week.
What excites you the most about Mappedin products?
Our mission is to improve the world, with a focus on making indoor spaces as discoverable as the outdoors. As Hongwei, the CEO of Mappedin, would say “we all take the outdoors for granted in terms of looking at maps but as soon as you step inside a building, that all goes away”. The challenge lies in the fact that indoor maps are often overlooked. The goal is to make indoor spaces as accessible as outdoor areas, ensuring that finding your way inside a building is as easy as using Google or Apple Maps outdoors.