John Deere’s Self-driving Tract Triggers Argument on AI in Cultivation

Deere & Co. helped to rehabilitate agriculture in 1837 with the first commercial plow. On Tuesday, the company unveiled a potentially flexible machine: a self-propelled tractor.

John Deere’s new 8R tractor uses six stereo and high quality cameras artificial intelligence to realize its nature and to walk. It can find its own way to the field when given directions and coordination, then plowing the land or planting crops without instructions, avoiding obstacles as it goes. The farmer can order new machines using the smartphone app.

Some tractors operate on their own, but only for a short time, following the GPS-defined path, for example, unable to move around obstacles. Some have a degree of autonomy that still requires the farmer to be at the back of the wheel.

“It’s a big change,” said Jahmy Hindman, Deere’s chief technical officer, at the new press, revealed in 2022. Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. “I think that’s as big as the transition from horse to tractor.”

The John Deere’s 8R tractor uses cameras and AI for navigation.

Courtesy of John Deere

Self-driving tractors can help farmers save money and create jobs that are threatened the continuing lack of agricultural activities. But mass production, with increasing AI, could also provoke controversy over layoffs and ownership and use of their products.

Deere did not say how much the new tract would cost; Its the most expensive models currently can up to $ 800,000. Hindman says the company is looking at a number of possible brands, including a registration system.

Independence has been gaining traction in tractors and other agricultural equipment for many years, with recent advances advances in advances made in robots and self-propelled vehicles.

8R stand-alone is dependent neural network algorithms to understand more of what goes into its cameras. Deere has been collecting and explaining what is needed to train algorithms for several years, Hindman says.

A similar AI approach is used by construction companies self-driving cars. Tesla, for example, collects data through its own automotive-driven vehicles Self-driving machine. And although the empty section presents fewer problems than the city intersection, Hindman admits that, like self-driving cars, the system could have difficulty seeing his place in a dangerous situation such as hail or rain.

Qin Zhang, director of the Center for Precision & Automated Agricultural Systems at Washington State University, who previously worked on a prototype autonomous tractor with funding from Deere, says technical problems appear to have been significantly resolved. But he said some farmers may find the system too expensive or difficult to implement.

Deere has been integrating more AI and independence into its sales over the past decade. In August, the company said it paid $ 250 million to buy Bear Flag Robotics, a start that restores tractors to make them self-sufficient. In 2017, that paid $ 305 million to buy Blue River Technology, which makes robots able to detect and remove unwanted vegetation using high-dose herbicide explosions.

The new 8R tractor is probably showing a significant change in Deere’s ambitions. It does not simply turn a very popular company into a reality robots; it also provides a great way to learn new AI algorithms and create new features.

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