The Purdue University-led Open Ag Data Alliance and partner Servi-Tech, Inc. have announced a commercial demonstration of its Real-Time Connections initiative, continuing their mission to help farmers better use data in their daily decisions across all of their operations.
Servi-Tech, the largest crop consulting and agronomic services company in the nation, and OADA worked together to harness the power of OADA application programming interface (API) standards to publish an open, nonproprietary cloud-based data exchange for weather and soil moisture data. By publishing the data exchange paradigm as open source, it is free for anyone to make contributions and use.
The open source computer code is available now and resides at https://github.com/oada/oada-formats. The project will be discussed at the Data Standards session during the InfoAg 2016 conference Tuesday through Thursday (Aug. 2-4) in St. Louis.
"Servi-Tech is pleased to support any development to make weather and soil moisture data more accessible and understandable to farmers in their daily operations," said Greg Ruehle, president and CEO of Servi-Tech. "Having an open and freely available data standard for real-time reporting, independent of any specific manufacturer or service provider, helps to make better day-to-day agronomic decisions. When ag data is recorded and transferred in a uniform way across any technology platform, farmers achieve better outcomes."
The alliance sees real-time API connection as complementing other open data exchange projects, such as from AgGateway, said Aaron Ault, project lead for OADA and senior research engineer for the Open Ag Technology and Systems Group at Purdue. He also is a grain and beef farmer.
"When Servi-Tech approached us about working together on a project to help design an API for weather and soil moisture data using the OADA open source framework, we recognized a great opportunity to get some real data automatically flowing in a fast, modern, published and secure way that others across the ag industry can use and benefit from," Ault said. "We are excited to see how this open real-time API can be built upon and enhanced by the community to further promote data interoperability in the future."
The Open Ag Data Alliance was formed in early 2014 as an open source project with widespread industry support and headed by the Open Ag Technology and Systems Group (OATS) at Purdue. Its goal is to help the industry get data flowing automatically for farmers in agriculture so they can reap the benefits of making data-driven decisions and stop wrangling data and incompatible systems. The alliance has since grown to over 25 commercial partners worldwide.
The Real-Time Connections initiative is a core feature of the upcoming OATS Center at Purdue, designed to bring together agriculture industry partners to rapidly develop data-integrated systems that harness the power of open source for grass-roots innovation and adoption.