Technologies, like Google Glass, may find a home in agriculture

10/03/2013 02:20:00 PM
Vicky Boyd

scouting crops with Google GlassCourtesy Alabama Cooperative ExtensionAuburn University agronomist Greg Pate scouts cotton using Google Glass.Wearable computer technologies, such as Google Glass, could very well find a home in agriculture.

That's the beliefs of three technology experts from Alabama Cooperative Extension, according to a news release.

The hands-free mobility offered by these types of technology would allow growers to communicate and unload and download digital information on their mobile devices while they go about their normal chores.

Bruce Rasa, a farm technology consultant, is one of 8,000 people commissioned by Google to test the device.

He dubbed it a "smartphone for your face that enables hands-free use."

Imagine being able to scout a field wearing Google Glass and have real-time information and diagnoses streaming back from entomologists, weed scientists or plant pathologists.

"I can use one of these devices to capture infield information that can be stamped by time, date and GPS coordinates and that also can be automatically archived,” Auburn University precision farming expert John Fulton said in the release “With the blink of an eye or a tap [of the Google Glass] I’ve made a screen capture of an item that could be of critical importance later in the crop season.

"For that matter, I could share this information with a crop consultant or input supplier even as I'm observing it in the field."

The technology also would aid traceability for food safety.

Growers could scan each can or bag of seed before its planted, georeferencing it at the same time so they know where everything is planted.

Wearable computers also should help growers better manage the increasing volumes of farm data, according to the release.

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