Monday, November 27, 2006

The Agricultural Hole...

There is a market that the tech industry seems to be ignoring when it comes to a simple solution: Agriculture. The Ag industry has been crying out for a simple solution that goes beyond the everyday accounting program, a vast array of untested programs, and spreadsheets that can be misleading. Why are spreadsheets misleading?

An average farmer will generally look at the bottom line, that is, what they made on each crop as compared to their general expenses. Problem with that is there is no way for the farmer to discern whether or not one crop, piece of equipment, or input is losing them money. The best system that I have ever seen for recording farm costs and analyzing if they are being productive is the Ferguson System.

Roy Ferguson has been doing financial analysis on mainstream crops and niche' crops like pumpkins and other exotic staples. Now, Ferguson has more experience with agriculture than 95% of people in the industry and even at his advance age he is still making major headway. That is, with one exception: his software. The Ferguson site has a way to track farm expenses but it is based on depositing "tokens" that you have to pay for in order to continue to keep using the site. But the worst part about the Ferguson system is that you have to be online in order to record your farm transactions. And if you have ever used a dial-up connection with a very data intensive site then you know how difficult it is to try and use something as useful as the Ferguson system.

So, my charge is to the Ferguson Group to come up with a software suite that is not memory intensive, because most farmers don’t own cutting edge computers, that will do everything that the online system can do but on the desktop. This will easily give the average farmer the ability to track all of their expenses and chart progress without having to hassle with the slow connection speed and wasted time and money of other accounting programs.


At 6:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Something else that should be noted is availability of high speed Internet. I can not even imagine how much the rural ag industry would improve with the ability to access high speed Internet.

At 12:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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