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What do we know about data collection?
We are on a journey to explore different ecological landscapes to understand our interaction with different environments worldwide. However, the increase in our exploitation and consumption of resources is also to blame.
The desire for great quantity and quality of food for growing populations led to the Green Revolution in the mid – and late 20th centuries. Realizing that farmers could not continue cultivating additional land to increase crop output, agricultural scientists devised methods and technologies to increase crop output per unit area of existing cultivated land (Withgott & Brennan, 2010). This means the Green Revolution aimed to increase enhanced agricultural productivity per unit area of land in developing nations.
The increased production efficiency has fed more people while reducing the amount of natural land converted for farming. However, many practices of intensive commercial agriculture exert substantial negative environmental impacts. At the same time, it should be understood that some aspects of industrial agriculture have helped alleviate certain pressures on land or resources.
Technology today helps us make better decisions about our environment. For example, we use technology to collect and analyze data. This allows us to make more informed choices about our lives.
Data Collection for a Sustainable Agriculture
GIS is a computer system used to collect, store, verify, and display data related to locations on the Earth’s surface.
Landscape ecology is an important part of geography. Using remote sensing, we can see what is happening on Earth. We can also learn about the land by looking at satellite pictures. The future of image maps looks bright, and exciting to learn about the environment.
You can see how the lands were used in your area, showing how they developed over time in today’s geographic maps. (Kimerling, Buckley, Muehrcke, & Phillip C., 2012, p. 466).
Why Introduce GIS to the Community?
GIS software helps better understand spatial patterns and relationships of crops grown in the area. This information lets you navigate where distant features are located from place to place. For example, see apples grown east of the lake, while blueberries and peaches are grown along both sides.
Why is the fruit growing clustered along the shores of a lake at all? Then, why are different types of fruits grown on different sides of the lake? GIS technology can analyze land use data to create maps and charts showing the distribution of different types of crops and livestock. These maps can then identify areas where there might be problems or shortages.
GIS Data Collection in the USDA Sector
The agricultural sector is facing a significant challenge to sustain the increasing population in the country. California has been growing rapidly since the last census. The number of people living there increased by approximately 39.1 million people over the past decade.
California farmers are part of a large U.S. state with various climates that provide a variety of sources of food, energy, and shelter. Also, it has a large, naturally occurring community of growth with four seasons with 163,696 square miles for residents, farmers, ranchers, and wineries to thrive.
In the past five years, the number of people living in California has increased by about 6%. This means there is more food available now than before. (Nath et al. p., 233). This has raised the alarm in the agricultural sector to increase food products to prevent food insecurity in the country. Hence, GIS technology can widely locate new areas for agricultural classification.
My goal is to show how GIS can collect data about the location of food sources and use this information to grow more food. I will use my knowledge of GIS to create an application that uses GPS technology to locate the most suitable places to farm crops. This application will then allow me to share my findings with others.
Use of Geospatial Science for Field Data Collection
Geographic Information systems can analyze soil data and determine which crops should plant where and how to maintain soil nutrition to best benefit the plants. This technology is crucial in agriculture because the human population is growing tremendously in the United States. Yet much of the information to interpret the human landscape is needed to comprehend how human geography has developed truly may not be on maps.
The GIS world requires additional information to help us use accurate data. For example, remote sensing helps us apply landscape ecologies to send us to monitor Earth using satellite images. However, classifying land cover as lesser than 1 meter can result in classification error.
The cost can vary to expensive results depending on the project and environment. Still, that doesn’t sound so bad.
Various technologies can help farmers achieve increased food production with reduced costs by enabling better management of land resources (Nath et al. p., 234). For example, thriving agriculture requires healthy soil. Unfortunately, humans are destroying the earth by over-consuming and polluting it. As a result, we are losing 1217 million acres of land every year due to agriculture. This means that we are losing 57 million acres of land per year. (Withgott & Brennan, 2010).
Collect Data with Higher Accuracy
The Global Positioning System (GPS) equipment includes navigation, data collection, and mapping applications. Also, its many advantages include ease of use, low cost, coverage over large areas, collecting relatively high accuracy positioning data, and more.
GPS handheld receivers can be categorized into three grades based on the level of accuracy they provide and the specific functions they offer. The technology is concerned with how we collect, represent, store, visualize, analyze, use, and present these geographic concepts to help or hinder effective spatial reasoning (Kimerling, Buckley, Muehrcke, & Phillip C., 2012).
View Data in A New Light
Uncertainty is an important concept in GIS. We use uncertainty to describe how accurate our maps are. Accuracy is another important factor in GIS. We define accuracy as the degree to which a map represents reality. In this case, we’re measuring the accuracy of the map by counting the number of survey points collected.
For example, contour farming attempts to adjust agriculture practices to the physical environment. If the land is flat, it’s simplest for the farmer to make rectangular fields or fairly uniform size and orient. However, farms often create irregular shape, size, and orientation fields on rough terrains and land segmented by a stream network.
Remember using GIS to create maps is just one means to your real goal- understanding the world. If you don’t look beyond map symbols to the reality they represent, you might defeat the purpose and end up with questions.
Is GIS an essential tool?
GIS has become mandatory in many settings for Businesses, government, education, and non-profit organizations. GIS is an essential tool because it helps individuals and organizations better understand spatial patterns and relationships. When I was introduced to the geospatial industry by outstanding professors from Cal Poly Humboldt and CSU Long Beach. I learned how the geospatial industry could be an important and useful tool in growing our economy.
Recommended Data Collection Software
The developer of ArcGIS, Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), is the developer and marketer of a full line of GIS products and services. During my four years in field research using ArcMap, and ArcGIS Online, creating maps and aerial/satellite imagery with a limited budget out of my pocket.
I have presented new findings working with professional teams sharing unique backgrounds to collect, manage, analyze, and effectively display spatial information of geographic features throughout California. ArcGIS Collector /Classic app allows users to collect data from smartphones or tablets. This app works with Bluetooth devices and can be used even with no Internet connection. Data collected by this app is uploaded to the ArcGIS Online cloud.
What is a Collector App?
ArcGIS Collector is a mobile application that makes data collection easy by capturing accurate data. It’s an alternative to collecting ground truth data depending on the project you are working on. You can start an ArcGIS Online account for free.
Software tools are helpful when used properly. For example, when using ArcGIS Online, it could help you think about the problem, and I was able to generate some ideas.
ESRI seeks to improve with simple upgrades to benefit its customers and assets. For example, in some projects, such as damage assessments, spots within ten feet of damage can provide enough information. For other projects, like underground pipeline management, the collection site should be a few inches from the actual location.
The device’s location service collects location data. This includes GPS, cellular network, WiFi, and Bluetooth. Unfortunately, the accuracy of these sources varies, and device location services are not always reliable. Using a high-precision GPS receiver is often the best choice for those performing data collection that requires better accuracy and reliable quality control.
The following are the pros and cons of the ArcGIS Collector.
- Easily collect and update field service features.
- Field telephone monitoring.
- Ability to attach images with features.
- Ability to navigate to functions.
- Easily update applications through ArcGIS online.
- Simple interface.
- App usability on Android and iOS.
- Integrated with control panel.
- Can’t stream vertices (no polygon and line features)
- No disconnected editing
- Limited documentation
- Difficult sending maps to the phone (no option to import the map from ArcGIS online)
- No ability to log in as a user until the map link is shared
- The Collector app currently does not support m/z values
- Expenses. It is costly to use.
- If not correctly used, the technology may lead to a significant waste of resources and may do more harm than good.
To sum it up, data collection is very crucial for our economy. GIS technology helps collect data about the natural environment. This information helps us to plan and build our economy.
GIS technology has helped collect data for the agricultural sector and other businesses thriving. Geospatial science is an important part of any business or farm. Data collection helps to establish a business or farm. Natural disasters can cause damage to businesses and farms. Let’s keep working together to sustain and support our community and environment.
- California Department of Food and Agriculture. “California Agricultural Statistics Review 2017–2018.” State of California (2018).
- German, B. (2021, 03 12). 2019 Crop Report Shows More Than $50 Billion in Cash Receipts. Retrieved from agnetwest.com: https://agnetwest.com/2019-crop-report-shows-more-than-50-billion-in-cash-receipts/
- Kimerling, A., Buckley, A., Muehrcke, J., & Phillip C., P. (2012). Map Use (7th ed.). Redlands: ESRI Press. Retrieved 01 01, 2022
- Nath, Shree S., et al. “Applications of geographical information systems (GIS) for spatial decision support in aquaculture.” Aquacultural Engineering 23.1-3 (2020): 233-278.
- Nowak, Maciej M., et al. “Mobile GIS applications for environmental field surveys: A state of the art.” Global Ecology and Conservation 23 (2020): 10-18.
- Warf, Barney, and Daniel Sui. “From GIS to neogeography: ontological implications and theories of truth.” Annals of GIS 16.4 (2018): 197-209.
- Withgott, J., & Brennan, S. (2010). Environment: The Science behind the Stories (4th ed.). San Francisco: Pearson. Retrieved 1 4, 2022