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The ELD Mandate Deadline Looms Near

Posted by Land Link on Nov 16, 2017 10:08:23 AM

The ELD (Electronic Logging Device) mandate is roughly 30 days away.  The effective date, which has been pushed back several times, is now December 18.  The electronic logging device (ELD) rule – congressionally mandated as a part of MAP-21 – is intended to help create a safer work environment for drivers, and make it easier and faster to accurately track, manage, and share records of duty status (RODS) data. An ELD synchronizes with a vehicle engine to automatically record driving time, for easier, more accurate hours of service (HOS) recording. 

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Topics: Logistics Business, Shipping News, Logistics News

Walmart is Testing Replenishment Robots in 50 Stores

Posted by Land Link on Nov 8, 2017 10:00:40 AM

The use of commercial robotics technology is hardly new. What is new is the myriad of fundamental applications today's technology is offering to speed service and enhance efficiency. Recently, Lowes tested customer service robots in some stores to help shoppers locate their products. I'm all for it.  I can never find anyone in my local Lowes to help me. Now Walmart is testing robots equipped with scanning technology to improve product management. The robots come equipped with cameras to scan aisles, assessing the level of stock, number of missing products, and misplaced items abandoned by shoppers in order to facilitate more accuracy in pricing, purchasing, inventory management, and ultimately, increase sales. The robots simply scan the aisles transmitting replenishment, pricing exceptions, and misplaced product data to stocking employees. These scanning robots do the job an estimated 3 times faster than staff. Walmart explains that in addition to moving employees to more productive tasks, the company is hoping to save customers time and make “stores more convenient and easier to shop, ensuring that products are available when our customers want them.”

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Topics: Logistics Business, Logistics News, Technology

Block Chain Technology in the Food Industry

Posted by Land Link on Nov 1, 2017 9:06:35 AM

First, lets get a clear picture of what blockchain technology is.  A blockchain facilitates secure online transactions. A blockchain is a decentralized and distributed digital ledger that records transactions across many computers in such a way that the registered transactions cannot be altered retroactively.  So how can this technology benefit your food grade supply chain?  Shipping today is riddled with documentation, regulations, and policies that require certificates of origin, letters of credit, bills of lading, vessel manifests, and customs declarations.  When dealing with food grade materials, the paperwork can become overwhelming.  Blockchain converts documents, such as traditional vessel manifests or bills of lading into a digital ledger that all parties can see and share. This distributed database maintains a continuously growing list of data records hardened against tampering and unapproved alterations.  

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Topics: Supply Chain Management, Industry Trends, Technology

Tunnel Boring for Elon Musk’s Hyperloop Has Been Approved by the State of Maryland

Posted by Land Link on Oct 25, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Last year we wrote about a futuristic high-speed train design capable of speeds in excess of 1000 km per hour.  It is known as the "Hyperloop", the brainchild of Elon Musk, a successful entrepreneur and investor in Hyperloop technology.  On Thursday, Maryland officials gave Mr. Musk’s Boring company permission to dig a 10.1-mile tunnel beneath the state-owned portion of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, between the Baltimore city line and Maryland state route 175 in Hanover, according to the Baltimore Sun. Musk wants to build two 35-mile tunnels between Baltimore and Washington, DC.  A non-stop trip would take less than 5 minutes.  Transit times like this give new meaning to the term Expedited Service. 

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Topics: Transportation News, Technology

Amazon Looking into Seamless Control from Order to Delivery

Posted by Land Link on Oct 18, 2017 9:35:28 AM

Amazon.com Inc. is experimenting with a new delivery service intended to make more products available for free two-day delivery and to relieve overcrowding in its warehouses, according to people familiar with the plan.   The new delivery program is being called "Seller Flex" where the company will pick up packages from third-party sellers selling on its platform and deliver the products to consumers.  Amazon accounts for 5 to 10 percent of UPS revenue, according to analyst estimates, while FedEx has said the e-commerce giant accounts for less than 3 percent of its sales. 

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Walmart Making Moves to Bolster Service

Posted by Land Link on Oct 11, 2017 8:55:50 AM

Walmart has acquired Brooklyn-based delivery startup Parcel, the retail giant’s sixth technology startup acquisition in the past 14 months.  This move is just a singular acquisition toward an aggressive common industry goal; catch up with Amazon.  It makes sense.  The best online ordering system means nothing without boots, or in this case, wheels, on the ground.  

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Topics: Logistics Business, Shipping News, Logistics News

Company Wants to Embed RFID Chips in Its Employees

Posted by Land Link on Oct 4, 2017 9:39:54 AM

Three Square Market, (32M) is offering implanted chip technology to all of their employees on August 1st, 2017. 32M is a technology company specializing in RFID technology, touting its application as a vehicle to enhance identity protection.  Employees will be implanted with a RFID chip allowing them to make purchases in their break room micro market, open doors, login to computers, use the copy machine, etc.  This program, offered by 32M, is optional for all employees. The company is expecting over 50 staff members to be voluntarily chipped.  The big picture with this technology is providing convenience to its chip holders for everything they would use a credit, debit or personnel ID card for in the workplace.  Is it the next best thing or another chapter in George Orwell's best seller, 1984?

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Topics: Logistics News, Technology

What Will Freight Transportation Look Like in 2020 and Beyond?

Posted by Land Link on Sep 27, 2017 9:24:18 AM

"Telematics", loosely defined, is described as the branch of information technology that deals with the long-distance transmission of computerized information.  Telematics is a combination of the words telecommunications and informatics. Telematics, in a broad sense, is any integrated use of telecommunications with information and communications technology. It is the technology of sending, receiving and storing information relating to remote objects, like vehicles, via telecommunication devices.  This may be considered as simply some complicated verbiage to describe an overly complicated process that we've been practicing for decades.  The most immediate application of Telemetrics will be the ELD mandate set to take affect December 18, 2017.  In this article we will attempt to outline what to expect, how to prepare and potential liability issues for your organization.

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Topics: Logistics News, Technology

Toys R Us Debt Service Propels the Toy Giant into Bankruptcy

Posted by Land Link on Sep 20, 2017 8:20:22 AM

Toys R Us Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection late on Monday, Sept. 18, as the U.S.'s largest toy retailer couldn't deal with its rising debt load.  The chapter 11 filing suggests Toys R Us may survive to sell again.  Chapter 11 focuses on debt restructuring rather than liquidation.  The main difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy is that under a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing, the debtor's assets are sold off to pay the lenders whereas in Chapter 11, the debtor negotiates with creditors to alter the terms of the loan without having to liquidate assets.  The company said it intended to use these court-supervised proceedings to restructure its outstanding debt and establish a sustainable capital structure, adding that bankruptcy protection will enable it to invest in long-term growth.  The filing comes as the toy giant struggled to compete with online retailers like Amazon, Walmart and Target.  Court documents show the company has its roots in Children's Bargain Town, a baby furniture store opened by Charles Lazarus in Washington in 1948. He subsequently opened the first Toys R Us in 1957 after adding toys and baby products to his original store.

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Hurricane Irma's Potential Effect on Fright Transportation

Posted by Land Link on Sep 13, 2017 8:46:26 AM

A Harvey and Irma one-two-punch is bound to significantly effect freight movement in the Southeast and potentially the rest of the U.S.  Trucking analysts fear widespread industry disruption as Hurricane Irma slams the Eastern Seaboard, especially since the track is headed for freight distribution centers in Georgia in the coming week.  We may not realize the full impact of fewer available trucks and DC bottlenecks for days or weeks to come.  Most trucks that did get stuck in Florida are likely from somewhere other than Florida since it is such a consumption state.  So that equipment taken out of service could have an affect just about anywhere in the country. 

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Topics: Transportation News, Logistics Business, Logistics News