FAQsFrequently Asked Questions
What can I expect a project to be like with Caravela?
Caravela follows an Agile process for software development. This means that our efforts are kept tightly coupled to customer desires and recurring feedback. We make decisions collaboratively and provide working software throughout the process.
What is the device you put at my site?
Our device is used where there is a need to convert between one type of network or protocol and another. For acquiring data from industrial processes, we often place our device at the customer premise. This “box” doesn’t connect to your enterprise network nor does it require changes to your firewall policies. It only acts to interrogate devices (like PLCs) and ship data to our cloud.
How hard is the Caravela device to install?
For IIoT or other applications where we place our device at your location, it can be set on a surface, or installed on a DIN rail. We can operate on 100-240VAC or 24VDC. There are no moving parts in our device.
Do I need to program or configure anything myself?
No, but if you have an internal development team, we can work with them. What you could help with is keeping your data meaningful, so how your data is named or tagged is very important. Making standards for how you store metadata (data about your data) and executing on these standards is very important.
Can I use your device or network to manage or remotely control PLCs or other processes?
No. By design, we do not allow connections across our device- for you or us. This is purposeful to prevent new security concerns, or vectors, which could jeopardize your network. We feel strongly that adding IoT should not decrease your security.
Who owns my data?
You do. It’s disappointing that this question has to be asked, but we’re glad you thinking about these issues. We don’t monetize your data or hold your data hostage. If you need to leave us, we’ll help. Your data is always available to you and can be exported in easy to ingest formats. We’d rather you work with us because we’re doing a good job, instead of an expensive contract or proprietary capture.
What if something isn’t working and it’s 8pm on Sunday? (Or any odd hour…)
We monitor every endpoint 24x7. We take a proactive approach, so often we detect any ‘problems’ before they become a problem. We don’t use off-shore resources or hide behind any sort of outsourced answering service. When you contact our support line, you will reach a Caravela expert.
What kind of performance can I expect?
A customer typically has billions of rows of data with us and our system processes queries quickly, with high-performance back ends. We don’t oversubscribe our infrastructure so you won’t be competing with other customers who may also be placing load on our systems.
I heard that visualization can be expensive, is it prohibitively so?
It doesn’t have to be. There are many options and much competition in this space, which lowers prices and leads to increased capabilities. We monitor this industry closely and are happy to talk to you about options.
What sort of tools can I use?
We want to enable a large suite of tools, not just those that we use or offer ourselves. So, anything that speaks SQL or REST can pull data or perform queries against your data that we’ve helped you collect.
What if the local Caravela network goes down?
While extremely rare, we prepare for the worst case scenario. Our data centers are Tier III+. If your data needs to be highly available, we recommend streaming to two different clouds in different geographies. Our architecture is designed for resiliency, but if you need the absolute highest levels of availability, this geographically diverse option is available. Read more about our Tier III+ Data Centers >
I need the data to appear in my ERP, CRM, or other enterprise system, will it?
We can integrate with APIs or at the DB layer with these systems.
How many PLCs can you talk to with one device?
Typically one to five PLCs or several thousand tags per sample is what we will load onto a single device. This is subject to your desired sample rate.
I have [this thing] and I can’t get data from it. Can you?
We thrive on these sorts of challenges. We find ways to make different technologies expose data and capture that data. Data is presented via common, easy to use technologies like SQL and REST. This avoids expensive and difficult to maintain middleware that often causes more problems than it solves.
I have a device that doesn’t “speak” LoRa. Is it possible that it could be converted?
It is very likely that we can make your device talk to a LoRa-based network. In fact, we haven’t run into anything where this hasn’t been possible. Interfacing with analog signals, understanding unusual protocols, other non-standard communication methods, and making them speak a common language is our specialty! Laying groundwork like this is often a necessary early step in an engagement.