Sparkling blue sea

The Journey of My Left Foot (whilst remembering my son)


Sunday 15th May

The sparkling blue sea
Brings a smile to me
For I know you would be
Quite content and happy.

From pain you’re set free
You’ve been given the key.
But we did not foresee
This is now, reality
You’re forever aged thirty.

Life has no guarantee
No promise of immortality
But we thought you’d be
Here for longer, sweetpea.

Love you my Angel.
Blowing kisses to heaven
Across the sparkling sea.








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STB: CSX must report blocked crossings on Chicago rail line

CSX will need to submit monthly reports for the next year that detail situations in which grade crossings are blocked by trains on its line in southwest Chicago and adjacent suburbs, the Surface Transportation Board (STB) ruled last week.

The STB ordered that CSX can’t operate trains into or out of the Chicago terminal over the Elsdon Line unless the line is clear, according to the agency’s decision.

The monthly reports must detail the railroad’s efforts to address malfunctioning gates, the number of crossing blockages that exceed 10 minutes, and situations in which trains are not being cut to avoid blocking crossings and why, according to a press release issued by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office.

In February, Emanuel and the village of Evergreen Park, Ill., filed a petition with the STB asking the agency to consider sanctions against CSX because of an “unacceptably high” number of freight trains blocking crossings. They wanted the board to monitor the railroad’s operations on the Elsdon Line.

When CSX acquired an operating easement on the line from the Grand Trunk Western Railway Co. in 2013, the Class I agreed to route trains on the line only when it was clear.

“Ever since CSX secured the right to operate on this track, residents have told us that trains along the Elsdon Line routinely cause lengthy delays that not only inconvenience residents but threaten public safety by blocking access to area hospitals,” said Emanuel.

The STB ruled that CSX had not been complying with its original agreement and ordered the railroad to do so, as well as issue reports monthly on any blockages on the line.

Take Advantage Of Supply Chain Big Data

Today’s supply chain is no stranger to big data, at least not when it comes to generating it. Think about the millions of transactions passed between trading partners every day that are triggered by the billions of register transactions caused by retail sales. These deluges of data have been both the lifeblood of the supply chain and part of its biggest challenges.

Standard practice for most companies is to retain data for a limited length of time then roll it off into oblivion. Their only reason for holding on to the data at all is to keep it for accounting purposes. Orders and the resulting document trail are used to verify order processing and payment. Once the time frame for refunds and counter-charges has passed, the order information is no longer needed. At least that’s the old view.

The practice was understandable when costs of data storage were high and analytic tools all but nonexistant. But those days are gone.

Similar logic is pervasive when it comes to retail sales transaction data. The detail of every retail transaction amounts to tremendous amounts of data. On the positive side many retailers offer this data in one of several formats – either as raw data or through a 3rd party provider. There are costs to both methods and the normal costs of storage and analytics apply too. So most suppliers don’t bother collecting POS data as they don’t see the value outweighing its cost.

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