This isn’t the first time the farming industry has tried to take up virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), with McDonald’s taking the Oculus Rift and Gear VR round the UK to farming events. Now farmers themselves are taking on AR technology to help them with every day
It was reported by ABC Rural that due to the rise in popularity of AR thanks to Pokemon GO, even farmers are welcoming the trend. Michael Scobie, who is a Research Engineer at the National Centre for Engineering in Agriculture at the University of Southern Queensland, explained why AR is understandable to most people, including farmers: “Augmented reality now is a lot easier to explain because people have heard of Pokemon Go. Essentially, it’s not virtual reality — where you’re completely immersed in another reality — it’s just augmenting the reality that’s there.”
He went on to explain how AR is helping his work, which includes irrigation scheduling so the farmer “will put in how much irrigation has been applied and how much rainfall there’s been”.
“Rather than sitting down and working through spreadsheets, it’s right there in front of you,” he said.
“The way that we’re using it is using your phone as a viewfinder to look out over the horizon and it pinpoints bits of information and puts these little blobs of data up in front of you.”
Scobie gave examples of how AR tech could go on to consistently help out farming: “If you’ve got a tractor that’s instrumented, we could use this thing to tell you how efficiently the tractor is going.
“Or if you’ve got a pump that’s instrumented, you would be able to point your phone at the pump and it will tell you what the discharge is or how much fuel or electricity it’s using.”
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