The Software Farmer

Winter is supposed to be the slow time of year for people living on the farm. Not so for Neil Mylet of Loadout Technologies, who spends his winters writing code and designing specialty hardware that improves agricultural efficiency, while improving the working conditions for those on the farm.

Mylet literally went back to the farm after graduating from Purdue and solved a problem that he and others with allergies, who also work on farms, have. Creating what they call a “Yellow Box”, his company Loadout, developed a way for farmers to load grain trailers without having to leave the comfort of their cab (and not having to breathe the resulting dust).

With a group of approximately 20 young people and with close association of Purdue Research Park, privately held, Loadout Technologies has expanded to 13 market segments from agricultural to energy to mining to manufacturing. An example of how they have applied their software expertise is the smart phone app, developed in conjunction with Hoosier Ag, that provides farmers with instant access, time-sensitive information like market analysis and weather.

Through its own success and outreach programs to help others, Loadout is demonstrating that technology can be developed virtually anywhere today (thanks also to things like broadband, low-cost cloud computing and online collaborative tools). Mylet and Loadout could be poster children for economic development, as, for example, they have an initiative, agNucleus to help young people in rural areas realize that they too can create their own start ups.

It is clear that Mylet sees a bigger purpose to his work, as he has an effort to help farmers in Tanzania improve their productivity, which will have an even bigger impact on the relatively efficient American farmer. Mylet put it best when he said,

“When you come from rural America, you can start a company. But, I think the values which you were raised upon are at the forefront. And we are going to make sure we positively represent this industry and the objectives of productivity in agriculture.”