May Links

The BBC reports about a setup that allows cows to have themselves autonomously milked. While the setup isn’t cheap, early reports indicate that yield increases as cows have themselves milked more frequently (an average of 2.8 times per day), and that this has positive effects for the cows’ health and wellbeing.

Verizon’s Powerful Answers Award offers significant prices (up to USD 1m for the winner) for impactful solutions to bigger issues. While participation might be tricky legally (consult the TOS), with the focus on Connected Health, Smart Cities and Smart Agriculture, this could be interesting to watch.

AGRITECHNICA, the world’s largest trade fair for agricultural machinery and equipment, is held in Hanover, Germany, from 8 to 14 November 2015. It features innovations in agricultural machinery and equipment and the latest solutions and concepts for the future of plant production.

The video Modern Farmer: Future of the Midwest discusses the role of data-driven agriculture or precision agriculture and the opportunities it offers especially smaller independent farmers in the American Midwest, as well as the struggles around data and smart infrastructure ownership between the indie farmer and “Big Ag”, and how all this relates to the Locavore trend. One source of inspiration the talk offers to inspire help in reducing risk for small farmers and tap into precision farming: The grassroots #farmhack movement.

SolidCon (28 October, 2015) launches a European sister event to showcase industrial internet of things applications, including M2M, smart home and other sectors; smartAG/smart farming would fit in well, and the call for speakers is open now until May 21st. It’s the largest gathering of its sort in Europe with a diverse mix of industrial players and academic as well as grassroots innovators.


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