Mobile Future

Farmers Helping To Cultivate New Mobile Technologies

Farming and the American Experience go hand in hand.  From the tobacco farms at Jamestown to homesteads in the West, farming has helped America grow and prosper.  Now, as the age of technology continues onward, new innovations are moving America’s farms into the twenty first century.  Smart phone apps are helping farmers conserve water; self-driven tractors are fostering the development of the autonomous car.  The American farmer truly is on the frontier of the American tech boom.

Currently, California is going through one of the worst droughts in the state’s history. Because nearly 80% of California’s water usage is accounted for by its large agriculture sector, California’s farms have been hit especially hard by the water shortage.  Farmers and policymakers alike are looking for ways for farmers to cut water use.  Fortunately for them, CropX, an agriculture analytics company, may have found an answer to California’s farmers’ water woes.  According to the Tech Times, the start-up is looking to develop an app that allows farmers to precisely dole out their limited water supply. The company is using the nearly $9 million dollars it raised to design a device that analyzes topography, soil moisture, and soil content, and then connects to a smart phone app to let farmers know which parts of their farm need water and which parts don’t.  Hopefully California’s drought will at some point end, but farming technology like smart irrigation will continue to help farmers cut costs for decades.

Farming not only benefits from technological advancements; it also leads the way in many new technological innovations.  For example, self-driving cars once only existed in the fantasies of sci-fi novelists and tech futurists.  Now, as these cars are quickly becoming a reality, American agriculture finds itself on the forefront of the self-driving car revolution.   The Washington Post reports that while self-driving cars created by companies like Google are only in their beta stages, tractor companies like John Deere have been selling self-driven tractors for years.   In fact, tractor companies currently are the biggest producer of autonomous vehicles technology.  Although self-driven tractors are not nearly as complex as self-driven cars’ will have to be, companies that are currently developing autonomous automobiles are building off technologies first created by farming companies.

Nearly every chapter of American history has been influenced by the progress of the American farmer.  By working with new technologies to create life changing innovations, farming has and will continue help write the newest chapter of American history as well.