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Microlocal and Geospatial News and Views

Ag Country Geomatics
August16, 2003
/Mike Liebhold

Domesticated plants and fields are already geocoded in detail on digital crop maps. GPS enabled  'Precision' AG'  is becoming  a standard high tech farming practice. Every point in the field has different requirements for microclimate, water, soil condition, or plant nutrition, livestock habits. So  with gps and computer enabled tractors, farmers can now decide how to farm the land, precisely, meter by meter. Here's a great description from the 1998  New York Times classic overview of  Precision Agriculture: Agriculture's Future: The Digitally Enhanced Megafarm By Barnaby J. Feder:  (registration required):

" Each tractor, pig and farm field is [...] simply a source of data that can make the farm more profitable if properly analyzed. The questions [...] include how much it would cost to track soil conditions more thoroughly, how yield data from a combine might be correlated with weather data or fertilizer records, and how computer simulations of projected crop growth could be used to fine-tune marketing decisions like what portion of the crop to pre-sell before harvest."

Modern farmers ride high tech John Deere tractors: Check out the specs for: the geeky starfire differential gps  and the, ho hum,  Greenstar onboard  system.  For
a first hand look at a geocoded farm, check out Tim Oren's account:
A Day on the Farm - The VCs get their feet dirty..


Tractor consoles ought to get a lot more interesting. pretty soon, linked via Canopy or WiFi, local nets to WiMax trunks (
at peak shared data rates of 70Mbps up to 50km in range (with no line of sight requirements) to the nearest a fiber net node.

The data will be there. The US Department of Agriculture seems inclined to offer farm specific, detailed spatial data free to every farmer. " just like the Weather Bureau, only we provide digital maps, base level polygons, and sensor data" Scott Charbo,USDA CIO  told me last month.
Here's the USDA's current Lighthouse Geodata Gateway offering farmers massive amounts of spatial data. According to Scott,  "Thousands of individual USDA field offices are becoming regional geodata servers."


Previous:
cool spatial blogs 080703
geo metadata pollution
euro cartos and locatives
standard geo-coordinates?
google microlocal maps
hypertags, Ibuttons, geovectors
harvey lehtman's hits
geospatial libraries
geocode everything
digital topo reviews
geographic photoblogging
semantic geosearch
classified Internet maps
web map development
tom kalil's picks
google mapquest storefront
digitalearth.org geonews
cybergeography research

aspen moviemap
geoscope at planetwork
earth observatory webby
cool geo aps from the CC

geospatial religions

RFID tracking maps
wireless and  gps games
geocoded realities
espresso, no wireless
radio frequency fog
RFID trees on the web
kpig on starhill
online ecosystems
skyline bears
internet protocols via satellite