Growing Use of API Technology in the Industry
Our industry is changing so much. The days of paper maps and thumb drives are fading away as new online GPS systems and API technology takes over.
What is an API? It stands for “application programming interface” which allows apps to send information between each other. The basic purpose is to let software communicate.
I found that APIs are so important that I hired a developer to focus solely on working on them. Helping with workflow is crucial in a cockpit and helping reduce distractions is key to quality work and safety.
I once had a wise customer tell me “Keep it simple and easy” as well as “we want as few clicks as possible”. APIs keep the user from having to get out of one program to get into the other and reenter the information for data entry. Another type of API is transferring or downloading information automatically such as shapefiles, applied log data, mapping interfaces, automatically bringing in jobs from other software, etc. All of these at the click of a button.
An example of a GPS API is a user building a job from the home office and clicking a button to send it to the GPS. The applicator can then immediately access the job and fly the boundaries. When done, the weather API can fill in the weather information for the coordinates (which can be overridden), and then the applied log data that has been done can automatically overlay the map. Isn’t that awesome?
One of the APIs that I hope to expand to more states is the Driftwatch system. We automatically stream the registered beehives and sensitive crops from their system to overlay them on our maps. This is so helpful in certain states. I’m trying to help bring their coverage to more states because I think it really helps our applicators prevent spraying areas where they shouldn’t.
We’ve had so many of our customers looking forward to easier workflows and finding out what’s coming up next. For now, we are focused on GPS systems and bookkeeping integrations, and I can’t wait to see what’s next for the future!
Y’all stay safe!
Photo credit: Paul Litwiller