Turbotodd

Ruminations on tech, the digital media, and some golf thrown in for good measure.

Posts Tagged ‘transportation

Rain, Shine, Sleet, Snow, or AI

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Uncle Sam’s getting into the AI game, specifically with the U.S Postal Service.

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, USPS is testing self-driving trucks on a more than 1,000-mile mail run between Phoenix and Dallas.

It’s a two-week pilot, and will use rigs supplied by autonomous trucking firm TuSimple to haul trailers on five round trips between distribution centers.

“The roughly 22-hour trip along three interstate highways is normally serviced by outside trucking companies that use two-driver teams to comply with federal regulations limiting drivers’ hours behind the wheel.”

Pretty simple equation. No humans, low cost, and no hours-of-service restrictions for AI Driver Dude.

So, dude (and dudettes), dissuade your kids from becoming truck drivers. There’s literally going to be no future for them.

Written by turbotodd

May 21, 2019 at 4:54 pm

Keep on Truckin’

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10-4, good buddy.  You got a bear on your back door and your comic book is full.  I’m 10 and on the side.

That’s about all the CB talk I’m good for, but KeepTruckin is good for plenty more.

The developer of both hardware and software that helps truck drivers manage their vehicles and cargo has raised $149 million in Series D funding, with Greenoaks Capital leading the round and including participation from GV, IVP, Index Ventures, and Scale Venture Partners.

According to a report in TechCrunch, this Series D round values KeepTruckin at $1.25B, and the company was founded in 2013 and has garned some 55K unique customers, and deployed its software in hundreds of thousands of vehicles.

“Our technology really improves the life of the driver,” [CEO Shoaib] Makani told TechCrunch. “These are real people doing work that keeps our economy moving. Trucking is really the foundation of the American economy. More than 70 percent of all freight is moved over the road in a truck. This is how we eat, consume and produce; without it, our economy wouldn’t thrive.”

KeepTruckin’s software is intended to bring the antiquated trucking industry into the digital age. Its platform provides electronic logs and fleet management tools, including GPS tracking and driver performance monitoring for fleet managers and dispatchers to track and communicate with their drivers.

“We are competing against paper and pencil,” Makani explained

East bound and down, loaded up and truckin’…into the 21st century.

Written by turbotodd

April 23, 2019 at 9:58 am

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Scooting Across the Bay

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First, an editorial caveat: I’ve been hit twice by folks traveling on scooters while riding my bike near and around Ladybird Lake in Austin.

Fortunately, both times I was able to pop back up, and I won’t let my own personal negative experiences cover my judgment.

Like the 2000-ish problem we had with broadband and the so-called “last mile,” I think scooters (and free-ranging rental bikes) have a real opportunity to help alleviate congestion in major city centers like San Francisco and New York.

But only if there are some rules.

The Verge is now reporting that after more than two months of waiting, San Francisco has announced that only two scooper companies will be allowed to return to that city: Scoot and Skip. 

According to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), both companies will be allowed to operate a maximum of 625 scooters each for six months starting in October. After that, Scoot and Skip may be allowed to increase that number to 2,500 scooters each.

I find it interesting that The Verge notes other big scooter players Bird and Lime may have been done in by their decision to just drop their scooter’s streets without permission.

Sometimes it’s not better to ask for forgiveness later, and when it comes to keeping city streets safe, permission is probably going to continue to be the better option.

Written by turbotodd

August 31, 2018 at 11:02 am

From Here To There

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It’s been a big week for IBM and the field of travel and transportation.

A subject, of course, near and dear to my heart (BTW, I think I’m over my AP jet lag now).

On Monday, at our Impact event in Las Vegas, IBM announced the new Travel and Transportation framework, a combination of IBM software products and IBM industry assets that provide a platform for new transportation solutions.

Interconnected systems allow a single view into business operations, saving time and money by allowing a company to be aware of the location, status and availability of all their equipment and assets.

This new framework uses industry and open standards and identifies key capabilities required by almost every transportation company, including:

  • Reservation System Modernization – Helps to facilitate the modernization of airline and passenger rail reservation and ticketing systems by using a new customer-centric model which supports the imperative to offer innovative and unbundled services to better compete.
  • Asset Optimization – Allows clients to manage capital assets throughout their revenue-producing lifecycle.  The types of assets managed include aircraft, passenger rail rolling stock, locomotives, tracks, and equipment located along the right-of-way such as signals and facilities. 
  • Safety, Security & Surveillance – Supports the use of sensors, RFID, digital video, biometric identification, and wireless devices. These are coupled with analytic tools to monitor operations, identify risks to safety or security such as unexpected events occurring in terminals and along railroad right-of-way. 
  • Multi-Channel Sales and Service – Helps to provide a seamless customer experience across pre-travel sales channels and on-trip touch points by providing the client with a single view of the information known about the customer / traveler.
  • Operations Control Systems – Helps improve operational effectiveness and reduce environmental impact through better planning of schedules, load plans, facilities, crews and equipment.  For railroads, this includes optimizing timetables, assignment of rolling stock and train and station crews.  For airlines, this includes optimizing flight schedules and flight crews.   

Click here to get more information on the IBM Travel and Transportation Framework or for details on how IBM is helping transportation clients and Business Partners to make smarter, faster travel and transport decisions.

Yesterday, IBM announced it would be working with the Finnish Transport Agency to build a single view of road and traffic information in Finland in order to help improve road management.

Using analytics from IBM, the agency is aggregating its view of road conditions, accidents and other road and traffic information, which helps build a safer and more adaptive road system for the citizens of Finland.

Also yesterday, back here in the great state of Texas, IBM and the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) (the largest university-based transportation research agency in the U.S.) have agreed to collaborate on research and development of intelligent transportation projects in Texas and beyond.

That agreement will bring together research scientists and engineers from IBM and TTI researchers, faculty and students, who will work with state and municipal agencies to explore technologies and innovations that will help solve transportation issues in Texas initially, and eventually worldwide.

IBM has engaged with the world’s leading airlines and railroads on projects for more than 50 years, and has already helped several cities around the world make their transportation systems smarter. 

For example, the city of Stockholm is using IBM’s streaming analytics technology to gather real-time information from GPS devices on nearly 1,500 taxi cabs to provide the city and its residents with real-time information on traffic flow, travel times and the best commuting options. 

The service will soon expand to gather data from delivery trucks, traffic sensors, transit systems, pollutions monitors and weather information sources.  IBM is also assisting the cities of Brisbane, London and Singapore to address traffic management and congestion challenges.

Visit the IBM Smarter Planet Website for more information on these and other IBM Smarter Transportation projects.

Written by turbotodd

May 6, 2010 at 4:28 pm

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