Thursday, July 23, 2015

Are Farmers Hitting the Brakes on New Technology?

When my dad retired from farming, one of the first things he purchased was a nice late-model John Deere 4020. He still owns some land and uses this tractor for dirt work and land maintenance.  With the baby-boomer generation of farmers retiring, I assumed that values on older tractors would probably start to rise as these retired farmers purchase their childhood dream machines. But a recent post by Greg “Machinery Pete” Peterson got me thinking that increasing values on used tractors might be reflecting a different trend—is it possible the rise in used machinery prices is a sign of farmer backlash against new technology?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Big Data and Technology in Ag Seminar August 14, 2015

Please join me for the Big Data and Technology in Agriculture seminar on August 14, 2015 at Indiana Farm Bureau. The day promises to have a number of engaging speakers who will cover different aspects of farm data technology, privacy and security. I'll be speaking about the legal aspects of managing farm data as well as efforts to ensure transparency with ag technology providers. More information can be found by clicking "Continue Reading" below or going to

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Are We Ready for Autonomous Tractors?

Although Google’s autonomous car appears to be getting most of the press, the auto-guidance system on tractors, combines, sprayers and other farm equipment has been around for years. Farmers still “pilot” their equipment today—sometimes pushing the “autopilot” button—but it does not take a crystal ball to predict that someday farm machinery will pilot itself around fields while farmers monitor such equipment remotely from a control room at the farm.  Are we ready for the liability issues that may bring?