Support for Open Source Agtech
Not every new technology for agriculture is coming out of places like Silicon Valley. Some of the best ideas, in fact, originate right on the farm. Around the world, farm hackers are forming open source communities to develop and share ag technology ideas. Brian Tischler created one such community called AgOpenGPS. He says it’s time to connect open source agriculture to universities and companies to offer support to these projects.
Tischler… “What we need is a home. A repository for the ideas for the collection and the dissemination of information. And that's not going to come from a group of farmers who do this on the side. That's going to come from dollars, either from university or from the government. We need to create a vision of where this should go.”
Tischler said if a repository like this were to exist it would inspire even more farm-level innovation and sharing. This might include things like pest and crop images and soil maps.
Tischler… “Do we want to coordinate the things that make sense in agriculture to combine, to be open-source to be community, but to cut to amass data? Like we were saying, like weeds or soil types and soil performance. Do we want to standardize and make that information singular?”
Tischler sees computer vision as opening up the next frontier in open source ag technology.