Arbor Age

Green Media Technology and Software Special Edition - Aug'14

For more than 30 years, Arbor Age magazine has been covering new and innovative products, services, technology and research vital to tree care companies, municipal arborists and utility right-of-way maintenance companies

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6 Green Media / August 2014 An arborist technician pulls up in front of a client's house. She turns off her GPS that got her there and pulls out her iPad. She quickly checks her e-mail for the work order, and gets the specs on the treatment she is going to perform today. Hopping out of her truck, she grabs a drill, her tree injection equipment, her PPE, and the bottle of product she is going to use. Getting to the tree, she sets up the system, and starts the injection. While she waits, she checks Facebook on her phone and quickly goes to Google News for today's headlines. The treatment moves into the tree quickly and safely, she rounds up her gear, cleans up the site and gets back in her truck. Using her iPad, she completes the customer invoice and gets it e-mailed to the client. She checks her e-mail again for the next work order, punches the address into her GPS, and is off to the next site. There are so many ways we use technology everyday in this business it almost becomes an invisible part of the job. Checking in at the offi ce, getting to the job site, and Googling "What's wrong with this tree?" are all made so much easier with technology available at our fi ngertips. Arboriculture is a sophisticated bioscience industry that requires up-to-date information; and the best in the business are constantly uti- lizing the smartest tools and embracing the newest ideas. Technology is defi ned as "the making, modifi cation, usage, and knowledge of tools, machines, techniques, crafts, systems, and methods of organization, in order to solve a problem, improve a pre-existing solution to a problem, achieve a goal, handle an applied input/output relation, or perform a spe- cifi c function." That pretty much describes everything we use on a daily basis in this business. So, what are some of the ways technology touches tree care and is making the lives of arborists easier? Vehicle technology If I were to ask what was the fi rst piece of technology used in the opening example, many people would say the GPS unit. In fact, the vehicle she pulled up in is one of the most technologically advanced machines she will touch all day, but our vehicles are so ubiquitous we often forget how impor- tant they are — until they stop working, of course. Vehicles, such as passenger cars and light trucks, are the cornerstones of any tree care business. The old joke goes, "What makes a tree company? Two guys, a chain saw, and a truck." That is fairly accurate in some regards, as getting to the job site really is job number one. Heavy machinery, such as a chipper or a lift, and other specialized vehicles, such as a bucket truck or a box truck, can be technological game changers that can transform the scope of you business. Our tree care service was interested in bidding on municipal tree care contracts but could never get our bid price low enough to compete. Adding a clam TREE CARE TREE CARE B y B r a n d o n G a l l a g h e r W a t s o n All photos provided by Rainbow Treecare Scientifi c Advancements Technology for Arborists Technology in our business comes in many forms.

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