Farming App Recommendation - Planimeter - February 2013
[University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Research and Extension University of Arkansas System. Arkansas Soybean Promotion Board. Mike Hamilton, County Extension Agent - Agriculture, Poinsett County Extension Office]
[Mike Hamilton] iPhones and iPads are becoming more and more useful to us on the farm and out in the field. First off, I want to say that any app that I may talk about, it’s not endorsed by the university. It’s just some apps that I found useful to me and to my producers and consultants in Poinsett County.
[Various screenshots of the Planimeter app] First off is this Planimeter. This is a way we can measure our fields and when you pull up the app, you’ll click on this button here and it’ll bring it to where you’re at and then you can measure. The reason I like this app is because it’s got crosshairs and I can go in through there and drop a pin down and I can outline my field and get the measurements of my field. Very user friendly. You can go through there and set your settings on acres and it’ll give you the amount of acres that’s in that block. You can measure distance, say if you’re wanting to run polypipe down the side of the field or around the corners, pretty easy to do.
This is one of the things one of my producers in Poinsett County, I was riding with him on the sprayer, run out of chemical. He called his dad and said, “Hey dad, I need some more chemical.” He said, “well how much? Do you want me to do 500 gallons, what do you need?” Brent said, “Man I don’t have no idea.” So I clicked the little button on my phone and pulled up this app and measured off where we’re at, and it came out 8.76 acres. I said, “Tell your dad 8.76 acres.” He said, Dad, we got just about 9 acres.” He said, “How in the world did you know that?” He said, “Just trust me.” So they made up 100 gallons.
They ended up having about 11.5 gallons left in the sprayer, which is a whole lot better than 50 gallons left. And these measurements are fairly accurate. I wouldn’t trust any of the apps or mapping programs on elevations, but as far as distances, they’re fairly accurate. I mean I’ve walked it with the wheel, used a range finder, and this app, and they’re all very comparable.
[For additional information visit www.uaex.edu. University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Research and Extension University of Arkansas System, Arkansas Soybean Promotion Board.]