Combining street-level maps with database management tools and over 100-million business and residential telephone listings, XMap Business from DeLorme can create routes, customized directions, and other geographic tools for managing a fleet.
Available on CD-ROM and DVD-ROM for Windows 95/98 or NT, the program covers the entire U.S. and retails for under $100.
XMap will import data for map display from ACT, Goldmine, Access, Excel, Visual FoxPro, and other popular contact management and database programs as well as search supplied telephone listings by name, town, zip code, or area code.
All data can be used to create route or territory maps, including routes and directions between multiple addresses. The maps can be annotated with text, MapNotes, and custom symbols. MapFolio allows users to save map views, draw layers, routes, and datasets for later use.
The software also enables map images to be displayed on business, institutional, or personal Web sites.
The maps can also be used with a laptop and GPS receiver for real-time directors or downloaded to a handheld Palm or Windows CE unit.
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Surface Systems Inc. has created a weather-information Web site (TruckerWeather.com) just for the trucking industry. Providing weather forecasts and road condition information for U.S. highways, the new site is staffed by company meteorologists 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
The subscription-based service provides both text and map forecasts for 12-, 24-, 36-, and 48-hr. periods for the entire country. Detailed state forecasts for the same periods are also provided, as are Interstate road closure and construction reports. A free demonstration of TruckerWeather is available at the site. 295
WPI Husky Technology, a U.K.-based maker of ruggedized mobile computing devices, has been acquired by Itronix Corp., a maker of wireless mobile devices headquartered in Spokane, Wash.
The first new product from the newly merged operations is a wireless version of Husky's Fex21 handheld PC that is compatible with all U.S. and European wireless data networks.
According to Itronix the Fex21 has been fitted with integrated, interchangeable radio modules that can be swapped by field technicians on-site to communicate over BellSouth Wireless, ARDIS, CDPD, and GSM networks. The modules are also designed to support the addition of future technologies. The modules are waterproof and incorporate an integral, ruggedized antenna system.
At the same time, Itronix has announced that it will supply thin-client applications for the Husky Fex21. Those applications are housed in a company's network and accessed by the handheld device via an Intranet or Internet connection.
At a press conference during the recent meeting of The Maintenance Council in Nashville, Peregrine Systems Inc. announced the ability to integrate its FleetAnywhere Internet-enabled, scalable fleet maintenance-management software and Qualcomm's OmniTRACS mobile information-management system.
According to Meg Davis, Peregrine senior product marketing manager, the integration will work both ways: allowing information to be transmitted either from an OmniTRACS to a FleetAnywhere system or vice-versa.
Davis said the integration can be achieved through an optional, extra-cost add-on module to FleetAnywhere systems. She noted this is the first time the Qualcomm System has been integrated into a fleet-maintenance system.
The key advantage of the integration for users, Davis stated, is gaining another level of vehicle management, including vehicle location, route planing and route status, and enhanced Qualcomm CallCenter functionality.
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Ryder System Inc. will purchase up to 10,000 OmniTRACS systems from QUALCOMM for longhaul vehicles in its Dedicated Contract Carriage (DCC) business. Installation of the satellite-based communications and fleet management systems has already begun, according to company officials. The DCC operation specializes in just-in-time and time-specific deliveries.
QUALCOMM and Ryder say they also plan on working together to develop additional information technology solutions for Ryder's fleet management, transportation, and supply-chain needs to enhance performance and cost efficiencies. - S.K.
Corp. and XM Satellite Radio reached a preliminary agreement to jointly develop new integrated wireless information and entertainment services that will be compatible with Freightliner's Truck Productivity Computer.
Freightliner will distribute, market, and merchandize XM Satellite Radio through its fleet relationships, dealer organization, and network of 160 TravelCenters of America retail outlets.
XM radios will be offered in the OEM's Freightliner and Sterling trucks, American LaFrance fire equipment, and Thomas Built buses beginning in 2001.
Managers investigating fleet maintenance software can log on to www.truckfleet.com for an online interactive demonstration of Arsenault Assocs.' Dossier32 program. The site has been designed to give fleets a realistic look at the typical functions performed by a modern fleet maintenance program, according to the company.
The site allows fleet managers to run a fully functioning version of the maintenance program in real time using preloaded equipment data. Visitors can also add information on up to two additional vehicles and immediately begin producing customized reports.
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At a press conference during the March meeting of The Maintenance Council in Nashville, FieldWorks Inc. introduced its expanded Galaxy line of onboard, service bay, and program management products for fleets and OEMs.
The line now includes the Galaxy Service Bay Tool, an all-in-one diagnostic and data-acquisition tool, and the Galaxy Onboard System, an in-vehicle logistics and maintenance system. The latter can be installed as original, "dash-embedded" equipment or retrofitted as a mounted installation.
FieldWorks also announced it has recently inked agreements to supply products to several major fleet and OEM customers, including Ryder System, Penske Truck Leasing, Freightliner,International, , and Cummins.
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HighwayMaster Communications, Dallas, has named David Bagley vp-network operations, Bobby Lambert vp-information technology, and Ken Vandagriff vp-customer operations. HighwayMaster provides wireless mobile communications, fleet management, and mobile asset-tracking solutions to the commercial trucking, and service-vehicle industries.
Free fuel purchase optimization service is available at www.mile.com, the Prophesy Transportation Software Web site that also offers free commercial routing and mileage services. The new FuelLogic feature recommends fueling stops along suggested routes based on price and location.
Profit Tools has released a fuel surcharge upgrade for their fleet management software system. The new feature adds a fuel surcharge to any invoice with a single click and automatically completes all pertinent data fields, according to the company. There is no charge for the upgrade for current users of the Profit Tools system. 290
Fleets can create and process customized equipment leases online at lease2save.com. Other online features include tools for comparing a variety of financing options and for building customized lease proposals and payment schedules. It also hosts an online forum to connect businesses with lending institutions. 292
XATA Corp. has announced a Canadian distribution agreement for its onboard computer system with Canadian Satellite Communications (Cancom), a provider of satellite-based wireless services.
PowerSuite, the enterprise fleet management operations system from TMW Systems Inc., now has a seamless interface to ALK's PC*Miler/Streets 2000 program. The interface allows dispatchers to move directly from dispatch screens to street-level maps with a single click, eliminating the need to key in addresses. It also gives dispatchers quick access to turn-by-turn driving directions, routing, and stop optimization features. 291
Cummins Engine Co. has unveiled a new innovation in its QuickServe initiative for customer support. The QuickCheck system operates in conjunction with a Palm handheld device to read and store SAE J1587 engine data quickly and conveniently from any electronic engine.
"QuickCheck," notes Mike Champlin, business manager, information and electronics, at Cummins, "fulfills the QuickServe promise to deliver support whenever and wherever it's needed by our customers worldwide." Priced below $250, it's affordable to sales reps, owner/operators, maintenance technicians, and fleets. It fits comfortably in a pocket or palm, so it's more practical than a laptop computer.
The QuickCheck system consists of a custom datalink adapter, an interface cable and connector, and the diagnostic software application. The adapter easily snaps onto a Palm handheld device and can then communicate through the equipment's six- or nine-pin J1587 datalink connector. Cummins' QuickCheck software installs like any other program for a Palm reader.
Once the QuickCheck datalink adapter is plugged into the appropriate vehicle harness, engine data can be viewed in real time or saved to be downloaded later into a personal computer. A range of functions can be checked with the Parameter Screen, including engine speed, coolant temperature, oil pressure, engine load, and output torque. When the Fault Screen is chosen, QuickCheck alerts the user to any problems.
Using the system's Trip Screen, operators can download engine data for cumulative trip overview and view data like maximum speed, cruise set, idle hours, vehicle hours, PTO hours, and fuel used. In addition, data can be uploaded into a PC-based record of engine use and performance. For fleet managers collecting data on a number of vehicles, the system can store multiple readouts to download for comparison later. Within the next 12 months, Cummins QuickCheck will be available for SAE J1939 engine data retrieval as well.
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Arrow Truck Sales Inc. has introduced an online used-truck service. The company says it provides a real-time, cost-effective exchange. Dubbed MyTruckConnection.com, the service will be offered to certified used-truck dealers.