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A continuing requirement exists in agricultural research, as in other fields, for increased accuracy and efficiency of data acquisition and analysis, hopefully at reduced cost. Digital data acquisition systems, which are capable of automatically measuring and recording data from a large number of sensors or inputs in a format which is suitable for direct computer entry and analysis, are often an economically and technically attractive means of meeting this requirement. For example, current systems for recording animal physiological and environmental parameters generally use analog recorders to produce multiple analog traces which must be manually sorted, measured, and converted to numbers (digitized) before any summarizationor analysis can be performed. In such applications, use of data acquisition systems which automatically digitize the analog signals can eliminate most of the tedious and time-consuming manual labour as well as increase accuracy and efficiency. This paper provides an introduction to typical, commercially-available digital data acquisition systems and indicates sources of information for specific system design considerations. The important question of choice between an analog or a digital system for a particular data acquisition application has been discussed elsewhere.*
acquisition of computer-compatible data in agricultural research
Buckley, D.J. and W. G. Hunsaker 1970. ACQUISITION OF COMPUTER-COMPATIBLE DATA IN AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH. Canadian Agricultural Engineering 12(2):90-91.
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