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Technology and the New Millennium

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"The Three Main Factors that will shape the New Millennium" was the topic discussed by Herman Cain, president and CEO of the National Restaurant Association at the National Cattlemen's Beef Association Annual Meeting in February.

He stated that, "Cattlemen must pay attention to those factors if they wish to remain competitive and in business. Those three factors are technology, people, and government." He told the large crowd that "Technology requires an industry to innovate or die, while at the same time, an industry must never lose its focus on the people".

Also, he stated that "Government will impact the new millennium and the beef industry must work to make needed changes in government."

While I share Mr. Cain's viewpoint on all of the topics, the area I want to talk to you about is technology, particularly the area of the computer and the Internet. Over the past four or five years, an increasing number of the producers in this area have begun to use the computer. While my emphasis has been and will continue to be the computer's use as a financial record-keeping tool, I can see many other opportunities for the use of the computer, particularly through the Internet.

Today, there are many sites on the Internet that will provide you with much needed information. To help you use this technology, I have listed a few of my favorite web sites below and a brief description of each. If you have Internet access, give them a try and see if they will meet a need in your operation.

USDA AMS Market News Reports
(local & regional livestock & grain prices)

Commodity Futures


Tax Information

These are just a few of the many agricultural web sites available on the Internet. Most of the land grant universities have web sites as well as most of the major corporations that support agriculture. If you have Internet access, give these sites a try.

Also, with the new millennium quickly approaching, I would suggest that you check with your local supplier to make sure that your computer is year 2000 (Y2K) compatible. And, for those of you who are using Quicken for your financial records, you need to check to see if your version of Quicken is Y2K compatible. You can determine this at the Intuit's web site, Intuit.com.

If you have any questions about the topics I have addressed, please give me a call.

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