We hear about “big data” all the time. All kinds of claims about data are made by all kinds of people. “Data makes our lives better and cheaper.” Or “data is the end of the world,” some say. “Data is why we have so many nice things,” others claim.
Let’s talk a bit about data and how it relates to gins.
Whether we like it or not, we’re in the data business. Yes, even gins. I had the pleasure to teach at the Stoneville gin school this year. During the continuing education section, one of the presenters got a lot of attention. His topic was on the use of individual roll serial number data for tracking modules instead of using module load tags. This started a big discussion, and a lot of very smart people (the students) began talking about the possibilities of using such a system or a variation of it.
I began thinking about all the data you as ginners keep track of every day. Producer information, classing data, module data, module location in the fields, module location on the yard, bales in the warehouse, warehouse receipts – the list goes on.
The more data we have, the more ways there are to use that information. Here is one of the familiar examples used in the school. Because each module retains its own identity, you can marry the classing data, field GPS data, yield information with your fertilizer applications, plant growth regulator data, harvest moisture and others to come up with a LOT of management tools used in precision ag. Map your fields with an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and think of how that additional data can be used.
The entity that can put all of this together can make itself quite valuable to the producer customer as well as find new ways to squeeze every penny out of resources farmers have available. Efficiency is the only way we are going to survive going forward. Efficiency in moving modules, efficiency in handling bales, efficiency in farming, efficiency in energy consumption and even labor efficiency are needed to get through these years of reduced acres and varying weather conditions.
Think about all the data you have at your fingertips as a ginner and how you might be able to leverage that information to help your customers and yourself be more efficient. What gaps need to be bridged in getting the most out of the data, and who is keeping you from getting it?
Getting together to figure out the answers may be the only way to create greater efficiencies. This will be a topic of conversation with many groups as we move into the upcoming ginning season.
Dusty Findley of the Southeastern Cotton Ginners Association contributed this article. Contact him at 706-344-1212 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kyle Campbell – Texas
June 2016 Internship Report
During the first part of the internship, I am working for Kyle Taubert at Oasis Gin Inc. in Seminole, Texas. It has been a great experience so far, and I have enjoyed my time here at Oasis.
The first day started off with safety training by watching some videos on gin safety and workplace safety. After the orientation, Daniel French took me on a tour of the gin and the grounds, taking me by the warehouse office and around all the warehouses and truck shop. Once the tour was over, I began working on the vacuum flashing on various machines throughout the gin with Daniel and J.R. Maldonado. As we worked on the machines, if I had any questions on how the machine operated, Daniel or J.R. would answer the questions I had. We worked on various stick and burr machines and other machines where vacuum flashing was needed. This continued into the second week. During this past week, we have been sandblasting the battery condenser, lint slide and other components to prepare them for painting.
I also have visited with Kyle about the aspects of gin operation and the time put in by a manager or worker at a gin during the ginning season. I plan on visiting more with Kyle to learn about different management aspects to running a cotton gin later in the week and next week before I finish up here at Oasis.
After I complete my time at Oasis Gin Inc., I am heading to Smith Gin CO-OP Inc. in Odem, Texas. I am greatly appreciative for the learning experience that this internship has provided me and am looking forward to the second half of the internship to see what it has to offer.
Campbell’s report appeared in the June issue of “The Ginnery” – Newsletter of the Texas Cotton
Aug. 2-4: Cotton Board/Cotton Incorporated Meeting, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Aug. 17: PCCA Board Meeting and Delegate Body Meeting, Lubbock, Texas.
Aug. 24-26: NCC Board Meeting, Memphis, Tenn.
Sept. 21: Staplcotn Annual Meeting, Greenwood, Miss.
Sept. 26: Calcot Ltd. Board of Directors Meeting,
Jan. 4-6: Beltwide Cotton Conferences, Dallas, Texas.
Jan. 18-21: Southern Southeastern Annual Meeting,
Feb. 10-12: NCC Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas.
Feb. 28-March 1: Cotton Board Meeting.
March 3-4: Mid-South Farm & Gin Show, Memphis, Tenn.