David Hest

Articles by David Hest
Yield Pop offers new tools for comparing seed varieties
Compare seed performance by soil type, tillage or rotational system with the new Yield Pop online tool.
The A to Z of technology changing agriculture 107
The complete A to Z list of technology changing the agriculture industry.
Electric variable-rate planting from an entrepreneur 2
Toby Graham developed an electric-drive system that converts ground-driven planters into by-the-row variable-rate seeders with built-in row shut-off capability. Now, he’s updating the system with an optional tablet-based controller.
7 new telematics offerings in agriculture for 2013 2
Here’s a look at what’s new in telematics for the agriculture industry in 2013.
New Yield Pop free online service designed for agriculture information sharing 7
The new free online service is designed to streamline sharing of information by farmers, consultants and ag industry suppliers.
FarmLogs adds rainfall monitoring, new smartphone apps 2
FarmLogs, the year-old Web-based farm business management software program, is adding new features in time for the 2013 growing season.
By-the-nozzle sprayer control 4

 

The capabilities of sprayer technologies that link GPS navigation systems with sophisticated by-the-nozzle controls continue to expand. Now, if you want a sprayer that can handle odd-shaped fields as well as a high-end planter with by-the-row shutoffs, aftermarket providers are leading the way.

 

High-tech spray nozzles target glyphosate resistant weeds 11

 

After years of primarily using one-size-fits-all spray tips that are ideal for spraying Roundup Ready crops, growers may now need to own an arsenal of nozzles specific to a range of chemistries.

 

Capitalizing on the cloud: Wireless connectivity in agriculture will make big gains in 2013 9

 

Cloud-based computing in precision agriculture took a huge leap forward in 2012 and is likely to make another big gain in 2013.

In the past 12 months, options for using “the cloud” to provide wireless connectivity to tractor and combine displays grew dramatically, to the point it is now possible to eliminate the frustration of shuffling thumb drives to keep precision ag data up to date.

New smartphone and tablet applications bring decision-making tools to the field 11

 

Over the past year, the market for ag-specific smartphone and tablet computer applications has gone mainstream. Now many of the big names in agriculture are offering apps to improve crop and machinery management.

Here’s a look at some of the new offerings for Android and iOS (Apple) smartphones and tablet computers.

2013 Buyer's forecast: Farmland myths 3

They’re not making any more farmland, right? Wrong.

“Don’t believe that myth,” advises Mike Boehlje, an agricultural economist at Purdue University.

The Corn Belt hasn’t expanded as if by magic. But the red-hot commodity prices of recent years have stimulated a dramatic increase in new land coming into production around the globe, Boehlje says. In addition, productivity of existing farmland continues to climb as high prices justify more intense management.

2013 Buyer's forecast: Farmland 1

Despite widespread drought that slammed Corn Belt yields in 2012, farmland prices continue their upward trajectory, though increases in recent months appear to have backed off from the 20-percent-plus annual gains of recent years.

Midyear farmland price data from the Chicago and Kansas City Federal Reserve banks, as well as surveys by Illinois and Iowa farm manager and Realtor groups, show farmland price increases of 5 to 10% in the first half of the year, substantially below the pace of recent years.

Palm-sized receiver adds GPS/GLONASS to smartphones, tablets 2

The SXBlue III-L GNSS palm-sized receiver from Geneq Inc. turns any Bluetooth-compliant smartphone, handheld, tablet, laptop or notebook computer into a fully capable GPS/GLONASS device. Out of the box, it can attain 10cm accuracy using OmniSTAR’s G2 or HP service or 1cm accuracy when connected via cellular or UHF radio to an RTK network.

Redtail Cartography harnesses Google Earth to pinpoint RTK coverage

Redtail Cartography’s new RTK signal mapping service offers precision ag providers and their customers a graphic depiction of coverage from radio-based RTK systems. It uses Google Earth to show high- and low-accuracy coverage areas, as well as coverage gaps resulting from hills and other topographic impediments.

The service is designed to help precision ag providers communicate, improve and expand coverage of RTK base stations, and to assist farmers and other mobile RTK users in quantifying coverage from semi-permanent or mobile base stations.

Video surveillance advances bring high-end security to the farm 18

As the value of grain, livestock and machinery continues to climb, driving down the farmstead driveway and noticing that something is amiss is getting scarier than ever.

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