Category: Technology

SpaceX launch could be a step toward solving the rural internet problem

Slow internet speeds and poor coverage are a major problem in many rural areas. It’s a competitive disadvantage for farmers, ranchers and businesses who generally have no choice but to settle for slower, more expensive internet than people living in urban areas. Traditional internet service providers, unless they’re regulated or funded by government, see little… Read more »

Kinze aims to keep planting simple with new interface

Kinze has traditionally relied on suppliers to provide electronic interface and monitors for its planters, but that all changes with the introduction of the company’s new Blue Vantage monitoring system. Kinze launched the monitor as well as the new Blue Drive row unit electric drive last week at the National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville,… Read more »

Case IH names 5 categories of autonomy, and a field-scale project

Less than two years after unveiling an autonomous concept tractor, Case IH has announced it will begin testing autonomous technology in-field. The pilot program, according to Brad Lukac director, autonomous vehicles for CASE IH, is about trying to understand customer usability, and what value proposition such technologies offer, all while gaining valuable customer feedback. The program… Read more »

TechTour: Bringing augmented reality to the field

Anyone who has tried to follow directions on a maintenance or repair call via telephone knows how frustrating it can be. Machines are complicated, and, in times of stress, verbal communication isn’t always easy. Amazone’s new SmartService 4.0 is looking to change the way we train and interact with service specialists, as we find out… Read more »

Medical 3D imaging technology adapted to monitor moisture in grain bins

A medical imaging technology developed at the University of Manitoba for breast cancer detection has been adapted for a new application: monitoring grain in storage. The GrainViz system uses a series of electromagnetic antennas mounted around the inside of a grain bin, which generate a real-time 3D image of the contents of the bin. “You… Read more »

Don’t forget about drone battery maintenance over winter

Drones are likely packed away for winter, but now is the time to take them out to perform battery maintenance. The chemistry inside lithium polymer (LiPo) batteries used to power most drones breaks down when kept at full or low charge levels for extended periods of time, reducing battery life and capacity. A battery that… Read more »

Corn School: Understanding 30 years of rising yields

Ontario will set a new corn yield record in 2017 with the crop expected to hit an average of 180 bu/ac or better. Where is all that yield coming from? Corn physiologist Dr. Thijs Tollenaar has poured over the data and identified three key factors driving corn yield improvement. A long-time University of Guelph professor… Read more »

Corn School: Using your drone to make better management decisions

Recent advances in the availability and quality of satellite imagery is providing powerful in-season management insights for corn growers. Many growers feel it’s no longer necessary to fly their own drone to capture aerial images of their fields. They can simply rely on a growing number of agronomic services to scout their crop using drone… Read more »

How sensors and cloud technology are improving milk quality and safety

Sensors and internet cloud technology — a combination sometimes described as the “Internet of Things” — are increasingly being used by farmers to maximize the quality and food safety of their production. The reduced cost of sensors and the ability to connect them to the internet (and users’ smartphones) is enabling new uses for this technology,… Read more »

TechTour: Corn planting with small, swarming robots

Fendt sees a future where 12 small robots the size of drink coolers will replace a tractor and eight-row planter for planting corn. After completing the MARS (Mobile Agricultural Robot Swarms) project with Ulm University of Applied Sciences and funding from the European Union, Fendt and parent company AGCO have decided to take the research… Read more »

Inside ‘The Real Dirt on Farming’

Where can Canadians find everything they need to know about farming all wrapped into a neat 60-page package? It’s all in The Real Dirt on Farming. Farm & Food Care Ontario officially unveiled the newest version of its flagship public outreach publication last month. This new Real Dirt is the fourth edition since the project’s inception in… Read more »

What to do if you see a suspicious drone over your property

It can be a little disconcerting to see any unrecognized vehicle on your property, especially with regular reports of thefts from rural properties. People are looking beyond their roads and approaches, to the skies, where unknown, low-flying unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones, can also cause apprehension. So what do we do if we see… Read more »

Could blockchain transform agricultural markets?

Before we begin to explain how blockchain may be a game changer for agricultural marketing let’s answer that question that is likely at the top of your mind. “What the the heck is blockchain?” According to the Harvard Business Review, it is “an open, distributed ledger that can record transactions between two parties efficiently and… Read more »

25 years of memorable SWAC moments

The Southwest Agricultural Conference (SWAC) will mark its 25th anniversary on January 3rd, when the two-day conference unofficially kicks off Ontario’s winter farm meeting season. In Part Two of our video series looking back at a quarter century of SWAC, we hear from a host of conference organizers and participants who share their favourite memories of… Read more »

The future is now for farm satellite technology

From automated tractors to precision sprayers that spray only weeds, new technology is creating a buzz in the farming community. But let’s not forget about satellite technology, which is now poised to make a tremendous impact on crop production. That’s the message Patrick Crampton from Farmers Edge shared during a technology discussion panel at the recent… Read more »