The use of electronic applications or “apps”on various devices such as computers, tablets, phones, ipads, and ipods has become an ever growing part of our society and the business of agriculture. Users of these apps are looking for a balance between simplicity and utility. This presentation is based on the process of creation, evolution and demonstration of two very successful decision tools created to fill both the land grant mission and meet these user needs. These tools are known as the feed cost cow-q-lator (FCC) and cornstalk cow-q-lator (CSC).
These two electronic decision tools are multifunctional and provide information that requires a considerable amount of simple but repetitive calculating. Both the FCC and the CSC have a broad base of users including extension professionals, livestock nutrition professionals, livestock and forage producers. The information required is both subjective and objective and is specific to each user making them individually powerful app’s.
The FCC provides three types of information; 1) unit cost of crude protein (CP), total digestible nutrients (TDN), and dry matter (DM), 2) a table for comparing various selected feeds simultaneously, 3) and an overview of total cost and amount of feeding a specific ration by feed type.
The CSC provides information including management, labor, transportation, and any added costs. The results are divided into several parts which show the cost of the 3 primary factors, transportation, corn crop residue rental, management and labor costs, on a per day per head or total cost basis.