How Al can come to the aid of farmers
DataQuest|October 2021
Computer Vision, part of Al, can bring about radical changes in agriculture, increasing yields and incomes. It's time farming became a high-tech industry
Kunal Kislay

Sight, sound, smell, taste and touch: it is our senses that establish us on the top of the dominance pyramid. In an era where machines have surpassed humans in various facets, the lack of some, if not all, senses is what makes artificial intelligence (AI) artificial.

Swedish philosopher Nick Bostrom said, "Artificial Intelligence is the last invention that humanity will ever need to make."Computer Vision (CV), a branch of AI, proves this quote to be truer today than ever.

An interdisciplinary field, CV enables machines to gain high-level understanding and derive useful information from images, videos and visual inputs. Based on the information, computers can make recommendations, forecast details and automate tasks.

The advent of Al technology can contribute across multiple industries. The agriculture industry, the backbone of a nation's economy, needs an amalgamation of smart technologies to overcome its current shortcomings. According to Xavier Besseyre des Horts (sales manager, agritech, at Microsoft), Alcan increase agricultural productivity by 45% while reducing costs by 35%.

The major advantages of CV in agriculture include reduction in cost, time and manual errors, accurate results, lower dependency on human intervention, nondestructive techniques and real-time results for better decision-making. Here are some specific areas where CV, along with deep learning and other Al techniques, can transform the crop sector.

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