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Building Web-based Farm Information System Using 3D Visualization Technology

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Using 3D : A Case Study of Jigawa State

ABSTRACT

Better developments in farming have been achieved when the information required by farmers on agricultural technologies are made available as accessing latest information of agricultural activities will produce a sustainable farming improvement.The research is aimed at the dissemination of information to farmers through 3D visualization technology for the development of to improve the life of citizen. The thesis examines the basic 3D form of visualization technology of major plants found in the farms of Jigawa State farming environment. The methods used in the research provided a reviewed of the related work in order to make a clear understanding of two dimensional works. Next, it made designed of the farm information model using Sketch up with Ruby for three dimensional farms. It started with observing some works previously done on disseminating information to farmers including organization and surveyed project based on how to improve the flow of agricultural information through modern channels for sustainable farming development where the works are not 3D enabled form of disseminating information The research continues with design of Web-based farm information technology which is a 3D form of information dissemination. To address none 3D limitation identified, we designed, implemented and evaluated a 3D farm information system. Results obtained showed that our 3D information system provided enhanced information dissemination to farmers in Jigawa State. Our 3D farm information system can be adapted and used in other environments to achieve better information dissemination.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

DECLARATION …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… iii
CERTIFICATION …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. iv
DEDICATION ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. v
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. vi
ABSTRACT ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… vii
LIST OF TABLE …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… xi
LIST OF FIGURES ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. xii
ABREVIATIONS ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… xiii
CHAPTER ONE …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 1
INTRODUCTION ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 1
1.0. Background of the study ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 1
1.1. Statement of the Research Problem ………………………………………………………………………………… 4
1.2. Motivation ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 5
1.3. Aim and Objectives of the Thesis …………………………………………………………………………………… 6
1.4. Methodology ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 6
1.5. Organization of the Thesis …………………………………………………………………………………………….. 7
CHAPTER TWO ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 9
LITERATURE REVIEW ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 9
2.1 Introduction ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 9
2.2 3D form of ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 9
2.3. Why 3D? ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 11
2.4 Geographic Information System (GIS) ……………………………………………………………………………….. 13
2.5 Google Earth …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 14
2.6 Description of the study Area. …………………………………………………………………………………………… 14
2.7. Review of farm management software. ……………………………………………………………………………… 16
2.8. Review of related literature ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 17
2.9. Limitation of the existing work ………………………………………………………………………………………… 30
CHAPTER THREE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 32
DESIGN OF WEB BASED . ………………………………………………. 32
ix
3.1. Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 32
3.2. System Requirement ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 32
3.3. System ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 33
3.3.1. GIS map layer ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 34
3.3.2. Data layer ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 35
3.3.3. Interface layer ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 37
3.4 Dataflow ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 38
3.5. Design of GIS map …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 40
3.6. Designing 3D Farm model ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 40
3.6.1 Tools ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 41
3.7 3D farm on Google Earth ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 41
CHAPTER FOUR ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 43
IMPLEMENTATION AND DISCUSSIONS …………………………………………………………………………… 43
4.1. Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 43
4.2. Tools and Platform. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 43
4.2.1. Google Earth ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 43
4.2.2. Keyhole Markup Language (KML) …………………………………………………………………………….. 43
4.2.3. ArcGIS ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 44
4.2.4. Ruby Programming Language ……………………………………………………………………………………. 44
4.2.5. Google Sketchup ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 45
4.2.6. COLLADA ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 45
4.2.7. HTML …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 45
4.2.8. Geodabase ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 45
4.3 Code Implementation ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 45
4.3.1 User Search Interface code. ………………………………………………………………………………………… 46
4.3.2 Zone Searching …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 46
4.3.3 Accessing the Google Earth………………………………………………………………………………………… 47
4.3.4 3D model …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 49
4.4. Testing ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 49
4.4.1. User Interface Level …………………………………………………………………………………………………. 49
4.4 2. GIS Maps Level ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 51
4.4.3. Data level ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 52
4.4.4. Modeling the 3D effect ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 53
x
4.5 Results and Discussion …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 56
4.5.1 Comparison of reviewed and proposed research ……………………………………………………………….. 61
CHAPTER FIVE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 64
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION …………………………………………………….. 64
5.1 Summary …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 64
5.2. Conclusion …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 65
5.3. Recommendation ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 66
5.4. Future Work. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 67
References. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 69
Appendix …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 77

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.0. Background of the study

Computer technology has improved many aspects of the oldest occupations, which is Agriculture. In Agriculture, these improvements include automated milk collection that comprises the robotic milking machine andthe use of Geographic Information System (GIS) and Remote Sensing in Agriculture, automated Weather station, Geographic Positioning System (GPS)in and computerized farmland assessment.With this, it is believed that computers have transformed farming activities. Advanced disseminating agricultural information technology has brought about strong changes in farming practices such as Information and Communication application in , Mobile phone application of Agriculture and internet application of Agriculture. With this application, it results in wonderful increase in production capacity of Agriculture. Most common use of computers in today‟s has been in replacing human work and involvement in oldest farming machinery and other farming tools. The automatic forms of farming such as use of machines and application of fertilizers are in use. With all these we can say computers have changed farming system while Internet has also doubled that change toward agricultural information dissemination.
Agricultural information dissemination is an important stage of agricultural technology development. It is essential because if it is not done properly and through the appropriate channels it will not serve the purpose it is intended for. The importance of information in agricultural development can never be over emphasized. Information generally is considered as being an essential production factor in Agricultural and rural development (Zijp, 2002).

Agricultural information is needed for overall development of Agriculture in order to improve the living standard of farmers. Adefuye and Adedoyin (1993) suggest that for a steady flow of accurate understandable and factual Agricultural progress, farmers must know, and act in accordance with Agricultural information. Therefore, how far people progress in depends largely upon the availability and access to accurate and reliable information. Positive Agricultural management rests on farmer‟s ability to make good decisions. While good decision making depends on correct information dissemination.Community‟s farms are becoming larger and Jigawa State farms are improving as well as people becoming new farmers, and affected by changes in many Agricultural factors especially with introduced good farming information. Decision making has become more and more complex requiring more types of information. With that, it is viewed that a farmer should set goals for his farming and accepts responsibility for decision made in reaching these goals. The world is leaving the industrial age and entering the information age. According to Dillman (1988), with society‟s entrance into the information age, farmers must be able to adopt management practices to take advantage of the information technology becoming available to them.

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are being used for developing ranking systems that evaluate land and provide a site assessment to aid, what is now known as precision . These hi-tech, interactive systems provide information based on a variety of factors such as soil conditions, drainage and slope conditions, soil pH and nutrient status. Prior to the use of these systems, farmers were often in the dark about soil output, and unpredictable weather conditions affecting crop quality and profitability (precision ). Agriculture provides farmers with control by predicting vital information including fertilizer application and problems with drainage, insects, and weeds (precision ). This kind of technology equips farmers with enough information to increase crop yield in a manner that is consistent with the best environmental practices for sustainable Agriculture (Preeti, 2011). The research attempts to contribute to the better understanding of how Geographic Information System (GIS) and 3D visualization tools can be used to disseminate farms agricultural information to farmers in Jigawa state. It will determine how farm information can be represented through the use of visualization tools to allow farmers make good farm use decisions. The visualization tools used include the Google Earth digital globe product. Google Earth is one of a family of 3-D geo browsers (that includes Microsoft‟s Virtual Earth and ArcGIS Explorer) that offer easy to use service for visualizing a 3D digital model of the earth via the Internet. It is readily extended to act as an output medium for a wide range of products that contain spatial data and facilitates data access on information dissemination. One of the main functionality of the geographical information systems is to visualize geo related objects based on their geometry stored and determined by coordinates in a reference system. The study of geo-related features and the relationships between them can be applied to many areas of the Agriculture industry. Regardless of scale –whether at the farm field level analyzing crop yield information or across an entire country– GIS is becoming fully integrated and widely accepted for assisting government agencies to manage programs that support farmers and protect the environment. These are the Agriculture GIS application in the field (Kumar, 2011).

The thesis includes Google Earth for the research in visualizing the farm information. Where Google Earth is geo browser software for viewing satellite imagery, spatial data layers and allows adding place marks, lines, polygons and 3D models.The software also creates virtual environments of user selected areas, such as a farm. Using Google Earth people may choose to simply view a location as a virtual 3D environment or to view the effects of an environmental process on that area. Also the thesis uses geographic information system (GIS) for mapping the areas of the research. According to United States Geological Survey (USGS) GIS is a computer hardware and software system designed to collect, manage, analyze and display geographically (spatially) referenced data.It is concluded that, GIS is a computer system that is capable of storing, managing, and presenting geographically referenced information. GIS systems are used in many fields, such as environmental control, tourism, scientific researches, resource management, and the definition is suitable for Agricultural applications of GIS. Agricultural production are supported by use of GIS systems, because if you look at origin of Agricultural data for example, it is frequently geo referenced and may consist of elements of Agricultural activities such as climatic features like air pressure and soil quality. Farmers can make experiment on soil samples or product taken from different places at the farms. Later, the samples are taken to a laboratory for processing. This is part of the GIS system work on Agriculture.

1.1. Statement of the Research Problem

A lot of researches have been done based on 2D to improve Agricultural productivity through information dissemination. Kakade(2013); views that Radio is one of the most powerful mass media for the dissemination of Agricultural information, and its effectiveness has been well established by many researchers. According to Shahidet al, (2003) the most used form of print media for Agricultural information was pamphlets followed by posters, newspapers, book/booklets, magazines and journals. But our research focuses on Agricultural information dissemination in 3D visualization technology with help of GIS and digital globes.Disseminating of Agricultural information is one of the most important factors that affect production. This means that getting better agricultural production depends on the enough and latest technological Agricultural information. Considering this, therefore 3D technology with support of GIS and Google Earth can bring better Agricultural information for good production. According to ESRI (2010), Producers use GIS to better manage their farms by creating information-dense reports and maps that give them a unique perspective of their operations. The powerful analytical capabilities of GIS offer an array of options for visualizing farming conditions, as well as measuring and monitoring the effects of farm management practices, ESRI (2010). With that, it is concluded that for a qualitative, attractive and better visualize access to Agricultural information to provide greater yield of farm product in farming system, the use of three dimension is the solution to problem of other forms of accessing Agricultural information.

1.2. Motivation

Jigawa State is naturally blessed with large expanse of land, rivers and flood plain resources for production of wide range of crops. The diversity of climate, soils and vegetation across the state provides a conducive environment for sustainable Agriculture. This, indeed explains why nearly 90% of the adult population depends solely on as a means of livelihood.This therefore motivates the researcher to place the state in the line of computer simulation. Internet has become a media which can allow displaying Geographical Information in better position and compromise interfaces familiar to user. The attractive feature of Geographic Information System (GIS) in the present history called three dimensions (3D), especially with help of Google sketch up and Keyhole Markup Language (KML). This also motivates me to enhance the technologies in 3D.

Another motivation is possibility that farmers could try different scenarios on models to disseminate information on Agricultural activities of their farms. For this reason, the study is interested in providing interactive and well developed information dissemination to farmers for better agricultural productivity to people living in rural areas. The emergence of the World-Wide Web (www) has produced a new computing technology in farming system. This has motivated me in this discipline to develop the web based farming system toward a better crop production.

1.3. Aim and Objectives of the Thesis

The aim is to: Accesses farm information to farmers over a network through the application of 3D visualization technology, with the help of geographic information system (GIS) and digital globes (Google earth) technology. The objectives are to:

a. Develop web based farm information system using 3D visualization technology.

b. Import created 3D models on Google earth.

c. Associate Google earth with Geographic Information System (GIS).

d. Assess information dissemination results of the 3D system side-by-side those of the 2D system

1.4. Methodology

Comparing real world in which people are living and the imaginary worlds designed by computer designers or game designers is usually considered as three-dimensional. As such, the need for 3D in disseminating information is rapidly increasing.

a) The area of study (Jigawa State) will be drawn using GIS. The State map consist of four zones drawn with GIS were local governments of the each zone will be viewed on the Google map through satellite imagery. The portion of the information displayed shows the major plant of that area in 3D format, and the information associated with the plant. With that the farmers will be inform and to decide on the suitability of farm management.
b) Spatial referencing to extract points for the area captured in the satellite imagery that is Jigawa State will also be used as mentioned in (a) to display the farm information of the area in 3D form to allow farmers making plant use decisions.

ArcGIS software was used for this thesis in digitization and modification of Jigawa State map. Google Earth is Earth browser software, which can be used to view satellite imagery of the area. Keyhole Markup Language (KML) file format that can be used to store and display geographic data. Number of plants models and farm can be created in Sketch up with help of Ruby. Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML) and File Geo-database can be used in developing a web site as well as database of the map system.

1.5. Organization of the Thesis

This thesis has five chapters that concentrate on a web based 3D farm information system for enhanced information dissemination. The general outline is as follows: Chapter One, Introduction, begins with a general discussion of the background of the thesis, statement of the problem, motivation of the study, objectives of the thesis, and methodology of the thesis.

Chapter Two outlines literature review, where in the introduction the concept of 3D was discussed together with GIS and Google earth. In this chapter the study area was described and a review of farm management was discussed. The review of related literature touched the work of some organizations and other project related to this work is carried out. Chapter Three outlines the design of web-based farm information system, system requirement, system architecture, data flow diagram of the system, design of GIS map, design of 3D farm and 3D farm on Google Earth. Chapter Four is about implementation and discussion which consist of implementation tools and platform, code implementation, testing, results and discussion. Chapter Five provides summary, conclusion and recommendation for future work

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