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Agronomy Journal Abstract -

Notes: Data Collection Software for the Psion Organiser II


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 84 No. 2, p. 260-263
    Received: Feb 7, 1991

    * Corresponding author(s):
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  1. D.M. Panter and
  2. F.L. Allen 
  1. Dep. of Plant and Soil Science, Univ. of Tennessee, P.O. Box 1071, Knoxville, TN 37901-1071



Using notebook-sized computers to record field and laboratory data has become commonplace among agricultural researchers. However, the physical size, mass, and limited battery life of notebook-sized computers reduce their attractiveness for field data recording. Several manufacturers have developed small, hand-held computers designed primarily for field data recording, but the cost of many of these systems is prohibitive. Our objective was to develop data recording software for the Psion Organiser I1 Model XP (Psion PLC, London)1, an inexpensive, calculator-sized computer with long battery life and nonvolatile data storage capabilities. Our software, named NOTES, is a menu-driven program written in Organiser Programming Language that accepts both character and numeric data, provides a simple method for recording data variables, and supplies utilities for managing data files. Data can be stored on non-volatile EPROM modules, making them safe from loss of battery power to the computer. Uploading data files to an RS232-equipped MS-DOS computer is automated through a file management utility built into the program and data files are stored on the host computer in ASCII format. This hardware/software system provides an easy to use, inexpensive method to increase the efficiency of recording field and laboratory data while virtually eliminating data loss due to battery failure.

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