Even though I’ve been running a startup for the timber industry for more than five years, I still get surprised about some points regarding the sector – especially related to the mindset and the resistance of technology, which is interesting since the industry has been using heavy and complicated machinery for the last decades.
When we started working on the idea, the biggest challenge seemed to be the technical part – if we could ever get how the detection is accurate and quick enough. Even though the traditional log measurements methods include the variety of up to 30%, you would think that anything that would make this figure smaller, would be welcomed. From the beginning, however, it was clear that requirements for us were much higher – if you have any difference, then it cannot be accepted. Even if everybody knows that if two people were measuring the same pile, they would always get the different result.
When users compare Timbeter to manual measurements, always disparities can occur. There was always the question – what is the truth versus what do we need to compare ourselves to? With Timbeter, now it is possible to control the diameter of each and every log. Before Timbeter, in order to control the measurement result each pile had to be re-measured in a process that takes at least 45 minutes.
We also understood that, sometimes, solving real problems with the help of technology is not so much about the technology itself but about the mindset issue. And now, after five years, I’m pretty convinced that we started working on a too bold idea. Bold ideas can be good, but in a conservative industry, we need to make sure that users are going to be eager to learn as well.
It would have been a lot easier to bring some a smaller innovation to the market. For example to create a solution, where you can manually enter the diameters of the logs. An individual would still need to measure each and every log manually but he could have all the data already in the digital format. In that way, it could be ensured that at least some papers don’t get lost and there’s less errors in the data entry. A solution could even calculate the volume automatically. There would always be a problem if the measurement process is still labor-intensive, time-consuming and highly subjective, the measurements cannot be controlled, but at least the tally-sheet could be in digital format.
But we decided to go bold! Our main goal is to make users in the forestry industry save time, labor force and have their processes more objective than subjective. And everything should be digital! Let’s be honest, technology is the future and the industry cannot be stuck in their 1900’s.
What I sometimes see is that instead of a digital solution, customers want the semi-manual solution. This means that they would still like to keep the option of the manual measurement that would be still highly dependent on the human factor. But there’s a technology that enables to measure each log in a much more objective way – can manual measurement really complete with the digital one where one log is being detected based on 2000 points? Results based on digital proof made with the help of Artificial Intelligence provide more transparency and better quality control. It’s time to leave the sketchy methods behind and move forward to a much simpler and much better way to measure logs.
There’s no middle way, you are either going for digital or staying manual. Bringing an automated Excel to the market wouldn’t be an option for us. . Our team has worked hard on the AI based log detection algorithm and we can guarantee its accuracy and ability to detect logs even in the worst weather conditions.
Timbeter is being used by many pioneering companies around the world and it has clearly proven its value by saving costs and enabling control and better overview of the process. So, there’s no more reason to overspend time, money and labor.
If you need to expand you activities, you care about the costs and you look for digital solution that can optimize and make the process more efficient – you are more than welcome to join Timbeter community and the future ahead.