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All Good Things Come to Those Who Wait!

In the heat of the summer, the FME Lizard is ready to surf the data highway! After taking a little longer to brew to perfection than originally envisaged, FME 2017.1 is now available for download, or for use on FME Cloud.

This release builds on the powerful capabilities that were launched with FME 2017 and adds exciting new features, data formats and transformers.  There are big improvements to FME’s support of Sentinel-2 and Planet, as well as adding the ability to read Landsat 8 and Terrain Tiles directly from Amazon’s Earth on Amazon Web Services (AWS) programme.  For example, this allows FME to read the most recent cloud-free scene of an area from one of the satellite image providers, overlay it on a terrain dataset and output it to 3D PDF all as one automated process.

In addition to the remote sensing improvements, FME continues its march on bringing temporal improvements, starting with the DateTimeCalculator and the addition of the DateTimeConverter transformer that converts between different date and time formats including epoch, EXIF, ISO and FME time, all with time zone support. It also introduces support for fractional seconds and wild cards. The TimeStamper has also been improved and renamed to the DateTimeStamper to bring it in line with the new transformers, but don’t worry; as always, FME will still run old workspaces containing the older transformer.

FME 2017.1 is also even easier to use with improved transfer between Workbench and the Data Inspector to speed up Workspace authoring, and the ability to copy and paste multiple parameters. It also introduces the ability to upgrade Readers and Writers within an existing Workspace. Transformers are the only functionality that are upgraded with each FME release, but ‘til now it wasn’t easy to see if you could upgrade a Reader or Writer. The example below shows an old Workspace open in FME showing an Oracle Reader that had been added in FME 2007 (which is exactly 10 years old!) so it would probably be worth upgrading this reader to take advantage of a decade of improvements in FME! Luckily, this is now as easy as right mouse clicking and selecting update.

This is just scraping the surface of the improvements as FME 2017.1 supports reading and writing of MapInfo Extended Tab files, SAP Hana, and Amazon Athena, plus reading GDAL VRT and Mapinfo MRR Grid. There are format improvements with support for Tableau’s new spatial data type and the ability to write shapefile indexes without the need for an ArcGIS license.

The improvements are not just limited to Desktop, FME Server gains the ability to set up job queues from within the Web Interface making it easy to route jobs to specific engines as can be seen below. This makes job routing easy not just on in-house implementations but on FME Cloud as well.

So, the release has definitely been worth the wait and the improvements aren’t stopping here, the 2018 beta already available: the magic is definitely ongoing!

To find out more about the release of FME 2017.1, click here.

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