TRY IT: New feature makes data more portable, shareable … useful

By Heath Gerlock, Co-founder and Director of Product / Farmobile

PRODUCT UPDATE: Farmobile has added more Data Out functionality to its Dashboard making field-level information extremely portable and shareable between farmers and trusted advisors. The focus of this expanded Data Out feature is to deliver meaningful data in usable, uniform formats that can be imported into prescriptive software for making effective decisions and determining what advice to follow.

It’s harvest time! The end of the current crop year is fast approaching and planning for the next crop year has begun. Understanding the impact of production decisions is vital during this time of year.

Influencing those decisions are many advisors ranging from insurance agents and lenders to crop advisors, implement dealers, agronomists, precision technology providers, seed dealers, pesticide dealers and co-ops. These relationships are a crucial part of local farming economies. The farmer and their advisors best understand the meaning of local data. Together, they rely on field-level data to effectively make decisions and determine what advice to follow. Farmobile supports data portability to deliver meaningful data to farmers and their local advisors. We call this Data Out.

Importance of Data Out

Data Out is, perhaps, the most important part of a fruitful digital strategy. Any digital strategy that lacks complete Data Out will fall short of properly supporting advisors and good decision making at the farm business level.

Brad Schwartz, Director of Business Development, plugs in a PUC.

That’s why we think this feature is so important. Farmobile recognizes that farmers and local advisors have optimized around a broad variety of digital analysis tools. Large investments in software and business processes already exist. However, it’s often assumed data collection and portability will deliver the data necessary for these analysis tools to do their job.

With Farmobile, farmers can get Data Out in the most common formats for sharing with trusted advisors and effectively leveraging analysis tools.

Getting Data In

To get Data Out farmers must first get Data In their Farmobile account. That process involves signing up for a Farmobile Standard or Pro subscription, installing the PUC kit into equipment and establishing field boundaries.

After that, farmers can run their machinery as usual while our PUC technology collects the most comprehensive machine and agronomic data set possible. Installing Farmobile’s hardware is a self-service approach with a reputation for being simple (15 minutes or less).

Data ownership is also something we’ve made simple — farmers own their data! No other farm produces data like yours. With Farmobile farmers own the source data AND the derived data. Farmobile doesn’t even own a copy. There’s nothing complicated about it.

Getting Data Out

To properly support Data Out Farmobile worked closely with farmers and their advisors to understand needs. As a result, Farmobile focused on normalizing data from machines collected every second into the most common types and formats. We focused on eliminating the most common frustrations including:

  1. Manual transfers via thumb drives
  2. Converting different OEM and aftermarket display file formats
  3. An inability to get engine or diagnostic data
  4. An inability to get exports ordered with consistent headers and data types
  5. An inability to get data from any organizational level
  6. An inability to get all or specific types of agronomic data
  7. An inability to get data in various, generic formats

Farmobile’s Data Out strategy tackles all these frustrations.

How do you get Data Out of your Farmobile account?

Getting Data Out starts by navigating to the Fields > EFRs section of the Farmobile Dashboard. Users sign into their Farmobile account then click on Fields and in the drop-down menu click on EFRs. This will load a list of their field boundaries.

At the top of the left-hand column is a small cloud icon with a down arrow. Anywhere this icon is visible Data Out is supported.

Under the Fields Tab, look for the cloud icon and drop down menu of Data Out options.

Farmobile supports Data Out at several layers to support maximum flexibility for your analysis needs. For example, farmer may require different types of Data Out:

  1. The Grower level. Export data for all Farms, Fields and Activities.
  2. The Farm level. Export data for all Fields and Activities for the selected Farm.
  3. The Field level. Export data for all the Activities for the selected Field.
  4. The Activity level. Export data for the specific, selected Activity.

What types of Data Out are supported?

Knowing how to get Data Out is only the beginning. Farmobile supports the following types of Data Out.

  1. Aggregated EFR Data. This export provides cumulative summary information about the Activities that have occurred within each Field. This is ideal to understand at a high-level what, when and where activity occurred without getting into all the nitty-gritty details.
  2. Agronomic Activity within Fields. This export provides point-by-point agronomic activity data that exists within field boundaries. This is ideal for working with agronomists, certified crop advisors, or even equipment dealers who provide in-depth analysis of various data sets in order to make correlations and recommendations.
  3. All Agronomic Activity. This export provides all point-by-point agronomic activity data (inside and outside of field boundaries). This is ideal for advisors and farmers who have another FMIS program that already has field boundaries. FYI, Farmobile can import existing field boundaries into any Farmobile account and reprocess data into activity layers, reports and the supported types and formats of Data Out.
EXAMPLE: This export (under the Field Tab) contains agronomic data by field activity.

With each of these types of Data Out there are various supported agronomic activities. Farmobile supports Data Out for harvesting, planting, spraying and foraging.

What formats can be exported?

The most common, generic formats in agriculture data are spreadsheets and Shapefiles; however, Farmobile also supports GeoJSON, a relatively new format that is gaining popularity and geared toward software developers. Within the Farmobile Dashboard, there are checkboxes for these formats:

  1. GeoJSON (.geojson). Best for software developers
  2. Shapefile (.shp). Best for importing into most FMIS and GIS programs for analysis. Typically desired by agronomists and CCA’s.
  3. Comma Separated Value (.csv). Best for opening in Excel or another spreadsheet program. Typically desired by farmers to do their own analysis.
Find downloads under the Data Tab in the Dashboard.

The same information is available in each format and varies by make, model, year and type of machinery. If you’re curious about what information you can export, watch the real-time Dashboard under Machines.

All the information, that can be seen on the Dashboard in real-time, is collected and organized into the Data Out tools. In fact, as Farmobile processes the real-time data into various Data Out formats, we include additional data points that have value such as latitude, longitude, elevation, true-course (bearing), distance and time.

Essentials: standardization + portability

Data Out means data standardization and portability. These are essential for farm success. Farmobile excels at this. Not only is the data you collect into your Farmobile account your property, but it is also uniform and easily shared.

While getting Data In is as simple as subscribing and installing a PUC in your equipment, getting Data Out is equally simple via the Farmobile Dashboard.

Farmobile tries to make farm data as passive as possible. We are passionate about empowering farmers with technology that serves them. The ability to collect portable, meaningful data isn’t just powerful, it’s #FarmerPower! That’s Farmobile.

Need help? You can always contact Farmobile Support at or 844.337.2255.