Putting Your Supply Chain In The Cloud

Image

If your business is up and running, you probably already have an IT infrastructure, and want to continuously improve that infrastructure. The Cloud could be your answer. Now that the Cloudis here, mainstream IT is figuring out how to best make use of it.

What does the Cloud do for Supply Chain management?  Supply Chain is, by nature, inter-company, so you already the Internet to manage your partnerships. Supply Chain Management must look at the Cloud for communication between businesses. Most business software is only designed to work within single companies, not between companies. Here is my list of things to think about when starting to move your supply chain to the cloud:

Advertisements

Lance Armstrong in IRONMAN at Nice, France

Image

On June 24, 2012 Lance Armstrong is scheduled to take part in his first ever full distance Ironman in Nice France.

This is without a doubt one of the most anticipated events in the long and storied history of the Ironman triathlon.

It`s not so much about how Armstrong almost won his very first race as a pro in Ironman 70.3 Panama, how he struggled to balance nutrition, bike speed and run endurance in Ironman70.3 Texas and Ironman 70.3 St. Croix, or how he put it all together to dominate in Ironman 70.3 Florida and most recently in a record-setting performance in Ironman 70.3 Hawaii on June 3, 2012.

It`s not even so much about how he won the Tour de France seven times before descending into the world of Ironman with all the subtlety of a rampaging herd of Texas Longhorn steers.

What it is truly about is the courage and tenacity that he displays on the playing field of life that was instrumental in his successful battle against cancer when it seemed that all was lost.

See more about Nice, France

2012 US Golf Open

The USGA hosts the 112th edition of the U.S. Open on the Lake Course at Olympic Club in San Francisco, and it’s the fifth time that the historic venue has hosted the national championship.From Jack Fleck‘s improbable upset over Ben Hogan in a playoff in 1955 to Lee Janzen‘s come-from-behind victory, thwarting Payne Stewart (for the second time in six years) in 1998, Olympic Club hasn’t just identified the best golfer, it’s leveled the playing field. Figuratively, and literally.

Olympic Club is a par 70 that can stretch to 7,170 yards. Its greens average only 4,400 square feet. Eight holes will feature new angles off the tees, and seven greens are accompanied by closely mown chipping areas.

Adding to the challenge is the largely universal notion that the first six holes at the Lake Course “offers the hardest start in golf,” according to USGA Executive Director and setup guru, Mike Davis. And that opening doesn’t even include the longest hole in U.S. Open history, a 670-yard behemoth of a par 5 at No. 16.

The weather forecast is extremely favorable. There is a zero chance for rain, and temperatures will top out in the high 60s to low 70s. However, early-morning marine layers can never be ruled out as a threat for delays. Prevailing winds from the west and northwest are expected to serve the primary challenge at a sustained 15 mph.

Could be Luke Donald, Lee Westwood or maybe Tiger Woods? But how about Phil Mickelson or Jason Duffner?

Don’t forget Rory McIlroy or Ricky Fowler

A dark horse, but not that dark, is Graeme McDowellImage

See more about the US Open

Considering SCM Software

Image

Just what is software for Supply Chain Management? To answer that, first let’s see what makes up SCM. Supply Chain Management (SCM) is the combination of art and science that goes into improving the way your company finds the raw components it needs to make a product or service and deliver it to customers.

SCM consists of: (1) Planning – company strategy and metrics; (2) Source – suppliers of goods and services; (3) Make – the manufacturing step; (4) Deliver – logistics; and (5) Return – customer support plus excess/defective products.

Read more: http://ec-bp.com/index.php/advisors/ec-bps-bloggers/595-considering-scm-software?hitcount=0#ixzz1x0WLPC00

Drop-Ship – The Ultimate

Image

Imagine the bicycle delivery person in the picture pedaling through a “pedestrian zone”. His first stop is a small T-Shirt store. He brings their package inside and gets a signature on his hand-held device. Next, he delivers a smaller package to a teenager in a nearby apartment. Again he gets a signature. You have just seen the tail end of a World-wide “drop ship” scenario that is highly dependent upon COLLABORATION.

Let’s walk back up the supply chain and see what we find. Our first observation is that all the  interfaces are electronic. It goes from BECYCLE, the company making the actual delivery;  through DHL Logistics, to a virtual manufacturer, then on to his manufacturing partners, 3pl logistics providers and suppliers. Even the teenager ordered his shirt from the manufacturer’s  on-line store and the T-Shirt store ordered from the same company’s B2B WebSite.

Albany Troy Belt Line

Image

Picture above was the Maiden Lane Bridge in Albany, NY. It plays a part in a recent discussion on the “Belt Line” that provided frequent train service. After a lot of guessing, we finally got the straight scoop from Gordon Davids:

The Albany – Troy Belt Line was jointly operated by the New York Central and the Delaware and Hudson. Contrary to a statement made on another web site and widely quoted, it was not initiated in response to competition from electric
railroads. The service was begun around 1881, according to the 1916 Annual Report of the New York State Public Service Commission.

It appears from that 1916 report that both railroads had reduced the frequency of service in that year, and the Public Service Commission took some exception to that action.

The Belt trains operated in a loop, using the upper level of Albany Union Station, Maiden Lane Bridge, the Troy and Greenbush Railroad (NYCRR) to Troy, the Troy Union Railroad to the Green Island Bridge, the Green Island Branch of
the D&H to WX Tower (Watervliet Jct), and the D&H Saratoga Division to Albany.

The D&H operated its trains on the Belt in a counter-clockwise direction, or running north on the east side of the Hudson River, and the New York Central operated in the reverse direction. According to the PSC, until 1916 there was a
train every 30 minutes between Albany and Troy, for 18 hours per day. I don’t believe that one train could make the loop in one hour, considering time needed for coal and water, so generally each railroad must have provided two sets of
equipment at one time to handle the service. The D&H crew would go on duty at Colonie, deadhead with their train to Albany, run via Rensselaer to Troy and then south on the D&H back to Albany. The NYC crew would start at Rensselaer,
deadhead to Albany Union station, run up the D&H to Troy and then back to Albany on the NYC. The Belt trains also handled some through sleepers and head end cars between Albany, Troy and Rensselaer.

Each railroad granted trackage rights to the other for passenger service only. It wasn’t until the abandonment of the Troy Union Railroad and the T&S Branch that the D&H got trackage rights on the NYC for freight between Albany and Troy
via Rensselaer, and the NYC (or Penn Central) got rights for freight on the D&H from Albany to Green Island.

Here is some other information I found before Gordon clarified it for me;

Trying to find something on the Albany/Troy “Belt Line”. No decent D&H info so I looked at the NY Central side:

1957 NY Central Hudson Mohawk Division ETT
Only one daily train covering the 7.31 miles from Troy to Albany
Train 706 left Troy at 3:35pm
Flagstop at Adams Street at 3:38pm
(leaves Troy Union Railroad and enters Troy & Greenbush)
Flagstop at  Madison Street at 3:40pm
Flagstop at Iron Works at 3:43pm
Flagstop at Rensselaer at 3:49pm
Arrive Albany at 4:00pm

Sunday only  Train 146 ran express and terminated in Rensselaer

1951 ETT was more robust, but included Montreal trains and some express trains.

Public Timetable Form 101 July 1940
Table 60 shows Montreal trains via Rutland (B&M)
Table 61 shows Montreal trains via D&H
There is a note: “Frequent bus and street car service from Troy to Albany”
Table 61A shows the connection at Troy with the B&M to Boston

Nothing here so I went to 1950
Troy is mentioned in tables 8, 9, 12, 13, 55, 56, 60

OK. Nothing so far. I will go in the other direction. I tried 1930 “New York Central Lines” Public Timetable
Troy shows on tables 18 to 25
I finally found it!
Albany and Troy Local Trams
No . ” T h e Belt Line”
Leave Albany t6 00, 56 57. 17 00. T7 30, tS 00, ‘8 30, f 9 00, “9 30. ’10 30,
511 30. t i l 33 ill. *12 80. 130, *2 30. *3 30 14 00, *4 30, +5 05, *5 30. 16 00, ‘6 30, fi 05, “7 33, *8 30. *9 30. *10 30. *1130 PM
Leave Troy tU 30. V 00. t” 30. »7 55, f8 00 tS 30, *9 00, t9 10, “10 00. *11 00 .’.!!
1 2 01. *13 57. * i 05, *S 00. *2 59. *4 00. t l 32. ‘5 00, t5 31, *6 05. 10 30, *7 00,
17 32, *S 00, *8 05. “9 00, *10 00, *11 00 PM.
Time occupied in trip between Albany and Troy, 25 minutes
Sorry, but copying some of this scanned stuff sometimes looses letters/numbers
All these timetables came off of the “Terry Link” site
http://www.canadasouthern.com/caso/ptt/timetables.htm

1933 Public TT says: T a b l e 2 5 a A l b a n y a n d T r o y L o c a l T r a i n s
“The Belt Line”
Leave Albany §5 57, f6 50, f8 05, §8 30, *11 33, *1 25, t5 30.
Leave Troy, *7 30, f8 25, U 0 55, *12 25, *6 00, *8 13.
Time consumed i n t r ip between Albany and Troy, 25 minutes

1935 still there

1936 could not find “Belt Line”

Required Attire for a Remote Workforce

Image

Ever wonder how your telecommuting colleagues really live? Turns out, many of them actually do work in their pajamas. They also tend to love their work-life balance – to the point where they’d take a pay cut to maintain the status quo. This is a “must read” for both remote workers and for their office-bound managers.

Remote workers fall into one or more of these classifications:

  1. Road Warrior (slang) a person who travels extensively on business.
  2. Telecommuter is a term used for corporate employees who work from home offices for at least part of their normal working time, using computers and other telecommunications equipment. They are usually considered as a separate category of worker from owners of home based businesses, consultants or other self-employed entrepreneurs who operate from home.
  3. Home worker who is not necessarily a corporate employee. Could be a consultant or other independent.

We concentrated on the have our own survey results from LinkedIn. Some of our questions are similar to those asked on surveys by CIO Insight and Staples, but some are different. We used several LinkedIn Groups involved with EDI,  Supply Chain, IT related and a “neutral” Group (university alumni). The questions (polls) we asked were:

Abandonment of Train Service to Troy, New York

Image

The picture above is the Green Island Bridge between Green Island and Troy

Trains in Troy operated over the Troy Union Railroad (TURR)
Congestion in Troy, New York led to the formation of the Troy Union Railroad in 1851, owned jointly by four roads. It opened in 1854. One of the lines was eventually bought by the D&H RR (Rensselaer & Saratoga RR), two were merged into the New York Central RR (Troy & Schenectady RR and the Troy & Greenbush RR),
and the fourth became part of the Boston & Maine RR (Troy & Boston RR).

In other major cities, early 1900’s grade crossing elimination programs rebuilt the right-of-way above or below the streets. Similar plans were drawn up for Troy, but never were built. Numerous streets required a gate guard, to flag the crossing or drop the gates. The track ran part of the way in the pavement of Sixth Avenue, and steam road locomotives inched their way past parked cars. This looked like industrial trackage but was a passenger main.

Around 1959 D&H and NYC wanted to run the Boston & Maine into Albany, but they couldn’t make an agreement with the operating brotherhoods to allow B&M crews to run to Albany. It wouldn’t work out if a D&H crew had to take the train over that distance. The B&M wasn’t about to put any more money into maintaining that service west of Fitchburg, and this was another good reason for them to dump it. Either way, the B&M would have had to either run via Troy Union Railroad to the NYC at Madison Street or to the D&H via the Green Island Bridge, and they would have still needed most of the TURR with all of its crossings, and the Green Island Bridge. A route via Mechanicville would not have worked, either. All three railroads wanted to be shed of the entire TURR, not only the station, and the best way to get regulatory approval was to let the expenses pile up and then dump the whole thing.

Efforts to discontinue trains to downtown Troy, abandon the Troy Union Railroad, and cut the high costs to New York Central, Delaware & Hudson and Boston & Maine were hampered by the “Rutland Milk“. The Rutland Milk took a winding route through northern NY State and Vermont, then was delivered to the NY Central Harlem Division at Chatham for delivery to NY City. The last run over the Rutland‘s “Corkscrew” division to Chatham was in May, 1953 (they had no other business on that line). After the “corkscrew” was shut down, Rutland Milk ran via B&M & NYC using trackage rights from Troy and Rensselaer to Chatham. The Rutland had no ownership in the Troy Union Railroad – they operated as B&M trains between White Creek and Troy. In 1959-1960, tracks in downtown Troy were torn up except one for the “Rutland Milk” . This track came out in 1964, after abandonment of the Rutland.
The tunnel for the tracks was between Congress and Ferry Streets.

Join a group devoted to the Troy & Schenectady Railroad  http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/T_SRR/

The Troy and Schenectady Railroad: What If It Still Existed Today? http://www.ominousweather.com/TroySchenectadyFantasy.html

Troy and Schenectady Railroad once crossed an Interstate Highway

Image

The former Troy & Schenectady line was still operating when the Northway (I-87) was built (1960’s) and there still was a grade crossing on the Northway a short distance south of the “Twin Bridges” over the Mohawk River (this was probably one of only a very few grade crossings on an Interstate Highway in the United States). It wasn’t there long, as the line was cut back within a couple of years to an industrial site just east of Route 9. You can still see where the line passed under Route 9 perhaps a mile north of Boght Corners.

During the period that the line crossed Interstate 87 (ETT has a typo “89”) at Dunsbach Ferry, the following instruction appeared in the Employee Time Table under “special instruction 103 public crossings at grade: Manually controlled traffic signals:” “Trains or engine must stop in rear of stop sign and a member of crew must operate pushbuttons in manual control box. After traffic signals have been operating for at least twenty seconds train or engine may proceed over crossing, signals must be restored to normal position after movement over highway has been completed.”

See more about the T&S Railroad

UPDATE in 2012:

Railroad and trolley historian and author  Gino DiCarlo has done some research and actually found pictures of this crossing.

See his article on “CROSSING THE NORTHWAY

 

Update June 3, 2012 from Gordon Davids:

The T&S Branch highway grade crossing was in place and active on opening day of I-87 in 1959. Traffic signals hung over the highway, and cross bucks were on each side of the road.

The state engineers told us at the time that the railroad was up for abandonment, and the state wasn’t about to spend the money necessary for a grade separation. They got a waiver from the Public Roads Administration (pre-FHWA) to permit the crossing for a limited period. I think they had to extend the waiver a few times.

I looked on Google maps street view today, and saw an aluminum pole alongside the northbound highway and an aluminum instrument case still in place just south of it. I’m sure that they were part of the highway signal system that protected the crossing.

Find out about Achievements and Fairpromise

 

World's Greatest Blogger