Farmer Iron

A Little Cab-Time Ahead

The spring work is in full swing in a lot of places, how are you maximizing that time?

Farm work must be starting when even here in Minnesota the local television station gets out and does a story. I know our reader friends in the south have been trying to be hard at for weeks, despite some pretty wet weather. It's what we live for in agriculture - getting that crop into the ground; working toward that next fall payday.

During the Farm Futures Summit I lead a technology discussion with attendees and had an interesting talk about computers. While we're talking iron in this column this was a conversation where the ideas merged.

Attendees note that given the way they have to farm more ground these days, they're spending a lot of time in the tractor cab. Add in auto-steering - popular in this group - and you have a situation where during long runs down a row you could get some e-mail done; or connect with suppliers.

Talk about monitor proliferation! That training seat will have to become a laptop table soon. I know Deere's 8R series cab has a fold-down training seat with a flat surface you can use. Others are doing the same realizing where you spend a lot of time.

The tractor cab is becoming a nerve center. When cell phones moved to the country, farmers found it easier to converse with suppliers and keep running the business even as the tractor rolled. I've done a share of interviews with farmers I knew were running the planter during our call.

Hopefully, I'll get some time in the cab with a few of you - trips to Iowa and Louisiana in the next couple of weeks will help. Let's talk about the cab as office. And in future installments I'll have some ideas for enhancing that experience too. A true convergence of cab and computer tech.

If you have an idea or two how you maximize cab time, share them in the comments below or drop me an e-mail at [email protected]. I look forward to hearing from you.

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