Friday, August 16, 2013

Big Numbers More Important For Farmers

July 31 2013
The Mirror
Hometown Boy by Duane Dailey
Wisely, I recognized I did not have "A head for numbers." I studied journalism when I left the farm. I understood words and grammar and appreciated the elegance and power of words.
Math baffled me. I didn't inherit that gene from Dad and Granddad.
Too bad they never studied any college courses that dealt with numbers. They'd have done well. Their farm management decisions were made in their heads, without aid of computers.
On trips home, granddad challenged me to explain ag economics I was learning. He was amazed that someone would study that for even one semester.
My Dad clerked sales every Friday at the Princeton sale barn. At the end of the day, he could run his eyes down a column of three-digit numbers on his Big Chief tablet. At the bottom, he'd write the sum. His co-workers would find those numbers correct, when they ran them down on the slower hand-cranked calculator.
I still must go down each column of numbers and mark the carry over, at the top of the next column. I'm slow at math.
It's taken a lifetime to catch up with numbers. A lot of stories from the College of Agriculture deal with scientists who have heads for numbers. And, they have powerful computers to "crunch numbers".
At the Crop Clinic last week two young faculty showed the power of numbers. Farmes and crop advisors got a glimpse of the future of agriculture......>
here ends references to his father and I lost interest....deb

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