Mark Smith

Mark Smith

  • United States, TN, Cumberland City
Mark Smith Cumberland City, TN
Jun 1
 
Here is a great article from Purdue Ag. Here's the summary about 'big data': Unfortunate truth #1: Data can't assist you in making a decision towards an end that you have not yet defined. You have to know where you want to go or what you want to do before you can hope to make decisions that get you there.
Unfortunate truth #2: You can no longer do whatever you want to do, what feels right or what your gut says to do with your data; you may now have to do things you might not necessarily want to do.
Unfortunate truth #3: You can't let the fear of a bad outcome stop you from making the right decision. You have to separate the outcome from the decision.
Unfortunate truth #4: You must identify questions for which there are no answers, or, for which the answer simply doesn't matter. If you're going to invest time, effort and money into data-driven decision making, you need to prioritize which decisions are deserving of your attention. https://agribusiness.purdue.edu/consumer_corner/dont-eat-random-mushrooms

Categories: Precision Agriculture, Farm Management, Operating a Farm

5 Upvotes
1 Comment
1 Share
3 Reposts

Post As

Post As

Viewable By

My Followers
  • Everyone

    Every person viewing AgFuse.

  • My Followers

    Members who follow me.

  • Group Members

    Select a group I follow.

In concert with the theme of 'data', I thought it important to share something that appears to only be taught in the military and business schools: the importance of identifying the 'desired end-state', and that end-state (or 'ends') and 'means' (specified and implied tasks in military parlance) are not synonomous. While no one has asked, it is easier if I use myself as an example. This is most critical when identifying Ag policies that one will choose (or not) to support. I learned military planning in particular from the Marine Corps. Specifically, MCPP (pronounced Mik-pee-pee; I know, I know). All services have their own acronyms, some better than others - Ha! The desired end-state is the first item that is required, and is the responsibility of the commander (or CEO, or Secretary of Ag). Without it, as the previous post implies, the 'tools' necessary to accomplish this cannot be identified. Business schools have their versions (often copied from the 200+ years our military has been refining the military planning process; often at great cost as one might expect). I have commented in the past that I am adopting 'no-till' 'No-till' is not the desired end-state, it is one of the tools in my 'toolbag' that permits me to grow the greatest variety of vegetables. Tillage is also one of those tools. In a devious post, I mentioned using a 2 bottom plow to plow as deep as I could in order to break up serious plow-pan that would impede or restrict water drainage as well as root growth. I have put that 'tool' back into my toolbag, and am now incorporating no-till. Incorporating this has absolutely nothing to do with water infiltration; rather my choice of land which has the potential for optimum tilth did - my particular soil type being another tool (soil type requirement being what could be called an implied task) necessary for my toolbag and desired end-state. I tilled it in order to bring it back to optimum tilth, and hope to put tillage back into the toolbox for a while, but chose a soil type that when in optimum condition, supports my desired end-state. Soil compaction over time will determine when I next break out that particular tool. This all supports my desired end-state, as will each of the data-points I collect over time (soil sample results, amendments added, etc.). To give an example of why this matters: my wife and I attended a grazing conference several years ago. A young veteran and his wife were in a breakout session on soil, and he lamented that he could not get his vegetables to grow. He had sunk significant funds into the purchase of his property, seed, amendments, etc., but the clay content of his soil was breaking his budget. The professor leading this breakout session mentioned a phrase I use often now - "good land you pay for once; bad land you pay for each and every year". He would need to continue to pay each and every year if his desired end-state of growing the widest variety of vegetables remained the same, or change his...

Post As