Where weather meets the eye.
ask – Innovative
ask – Innovative Visualisierungslösungen GmbH is an owner-managed company. ask’ specializes in the processing and visualization of meteorological, climatological, cartographic and technical data. In addition to its own products, the company offers turnkey solutions, IT consulting services, bespoke software development and other services.
The company was established over 25 years ago. Its customers, some of whom have been with ‘ask’ since the beginning, include ten national and several commercial weather services, German Air Traffic Control (DFS), the European Organization for the Use of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT) and the German television channel ZDF, just to name a few.
At the beginning of the 1990s, the first graphics engines and the first modern numerical weather forecast models were made available.Hermin Beumer-Aftahi, Florian Schröder and Kennet Karlsson were employed at the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics as young scientists. Their research focused on computer graphics, specifically scientific/technical visualization and virtual reality. Together with the German Weather Service (DWD), the Hessischer Rundfunk (HR) and the Swedish Weather Service (SMHI), the idea of the three-dimensional media-friendly visualization of weather data was developed and launched. In 1995, the Fraunhofer Society awarded the renowned Fraunhofer Prize for Information Technology to this research project. As a result, ask – Innovative Visualisierungslösungen GmbH was founded. DWD, HR and SMHI are still among the company’s most important customers.
During the start-up phase the company grew rapidly. Further business sectors were explored, including the automotive and shoe industries. Participation at major international trade fairs opened up new markets (CeBIT in Hanover, IBC in Amsterdam, IABM in Barcelona, meteohydex in Geneva, etc.). Particularly noteworthy were the live broadcasts from IFA 1997 in Berlin. At that event,TriVis Weather Graphix was first integrated into a Virtual Studio and presented on the ARD midday magazine show
The New Location
By 2009, the company’s growth and increasing demand on technical and logistical infrastructure made relocation a necessity. A brand new office building in Darmstadt called “The Eye” was chosen; the section selected by ‘ask’ was planned and fitted out with a view to the company’s immediate needs and planned growth. In addition to ergonomic offices that create a productive work environment, a state-of-the-art server room and fibre-optic Internet connectivity were established. The location is convenient for Darmstadt’s main station and Frankfurt Airport. Several hotels are situated within walking distance, useful for national and international customers.
Where We Are Today
Today ‘ask’ offers its solutions and services to customers all over the world. Our company’s philosophy centers on customer satisfaction; customer contracts running for over two decades embody this. National and international customers appreciate our professional competence, technical innovation and reliability. Moreover, they benefit from the sustainable collaboration we can provide as a reputable, owner-operated, independent business.