The Precision Farming Primer © 1999
GIS Technology and Site-Specific Management in Production Agriculture
Foreword by Grant Mangold
Introduction: An Overview of Precision Farming
Topic 1: Continuous Data Logging
GPS positioning and data collection devices "census" crop yield and other factors every few meters throughout a field—deriving yield maps.
Topic 2: Point Sampling
Sampling a variable and spatially interpolating it into a continuous surface matches the data derived in topic 1—deriving soil nutrient maps.
Topic 3: Mapped Data Analysis: Within a Single Map
"Map-ematical" techniques derive spatial relationships within a map generated in topics 1 and 2—deriving farm input/out connections using univariate data.
Topic 4: Mapped Data Analysis: Among Several Maps
"Map-ematical" techniques derive spatial relationships among several maps generated in topics 1 and 2—deriving farm input/out connections using multivariate data.
Topic 5: Modeling Management Actions
The relationship(s) derived in topic 3 determine the appropriate, site-specific management actions—deriving prescription maps.
Topic 6: Understanding GIS
Geographic information systems (GIS) provide the technological "glue" of the precision farming process—organizing mapped data.
Topic 7: Understanding GPS/IDI/RS
The technologies of the global positioning system (GPS), intelligent devices and implements (IDI), and remote sensing provide essential base data—collecting and handling mapped data.
Conclusion: Putting It All Together
Site-specific management is both a technical and a cultural revolution—the human dimensions of hi-tech farming.
Appendix A: The Rest of the Story
Many of the concepts and procedures forming precision farming require further explanation for the techy-types—getting into the details.
Appendix B: Precision Farming Resources (Compiled by G. Mangold)
There is a growing body of knowledge out there—organizations and publications involved in precision farming.
Appendix C: Checklist for Yield Mapping Software
Yield mapping software is at the heart of precision farming—assessing yield mapping software.