Collaboration is key to success in Ag Technology

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Collaboration is key to success in Ag Technology

In 2019, Big Sky Technologies led a collaboration project to demonstrate a collaborative approach by five commercial agriculture hardware and software companies to provide producers with one interconnected data ecosystem powered by multiple sensors, gateways, and software solutions in an easily consumable format.

Thanks to funding from Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) and Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise (TSBE), this Digital Farming Collaboration Project brought together 

Bigsky Technologies - Communication  and Data Transfer 

Data Farming - Satellite Imagery & Soil Testing

Goanna Ag - Field Sensors

Pairtree - End user dashboard

RDH Integration Solutions - Cameras & Pump automation

Here is an excerpt from the Original Article

The aim of the project is to transform ‘Condamine Plains’ aggregation located near Dalby in Queensland’s Darling Downs region west of Brisbane.

The main objective is demonstrating that parallel technologies & development timelines can work together to provide a seamless integration of products/services as a commercially viable consumers product offering, and; the development of inter-operability guidelines to promote wider adoption to assist with solving fragmented industry approach and/or sole vendor lock in.

Big Sky Technologies

Founded by Toby Harpham and Jason McNeice, Big Sky Techologies tackles challenges around Connectivity and Tractor & Harvest Hardware on this project.


This element has been universally identified as a key barrier to adoption of digital technologies in Agriculture. There is a common misconception that a highly skilled installation process is required, and hence a high price for connectivity. We are aiming to demonstrate that a simple and scalable solution is available that is also multi device & gateway compatible. This project can also demonstrate that whilst a ‘key’ connectivity can be identified that additional overlapping/ available connectivity pieces can be added where necessary to allow flexibility and future proofing.

Machine data is currently controlled by the major Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and requires a costly subscription and inflexible software. This dynamic also limits most operations to single brand which may not fit the “best fit for purpose” approach.

The current market practice to transfer data to and from machines to 3rd party users (Agronomist, Consultants, Ginners, Plant breeders etc) is a manual USB data transfer. The project will adopt a two-way data transfer device that will enable real time data transfer through installation of two-way data transfer ‘Nibbler’ devices from Big Sky Technologies to tractors and spray rigs to enable geospatial data recording, tractor usage recording and data transfer capabilities for remote programmed variable rate maps, yield data processing & cotton RFID/Bale ID recording.

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