Five Ways Big Data, Analytics Are Transforming the Trucking Industry

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Five Ways Big Data, Analytics Are Transforming the Trucking Industry

Fleets are taking advantage of big data and the increased reporting frequency of telematics devices to achieve safer, more efficient and productive driving.

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Mobile Notifications

Using an open-architecture remote diagnostics system, truck drivers and fleet managers can receive mobile notifications about pending performance issues. The ability to predict issues before they happen helps avoid unplanned downtime. Notifications can be delivered via computers, email, cell phones and more, making it easier for drivers and fleet managers to receive and act on critical updates.

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Over-the-Air Engine Reprogramming

Much like mobile phones, today's engines benefit from frequent software updates and recalibrations, and will soon be able to receive these updates remotely via over-the-air reprogramming. Benefits like improved fuel economy can thus be achieved without having to schedule multiple service visits. Over-the-air reprogramming can potentially be used to recalibrate engines for new usage patterns, such as mountainous terrains or heavier loads, to optimize vehicle efficiency.

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Truck Health Reports

Open-architecture remote diagnostics systems that work with a truck's existing telematics systems pull diagnostic-related data from vehicles to create vehicle health reports. Using these reports to capture insights into the operational health of the vehicle, fleet managers can understand the severity of vehicle issues and identify the appropriate corrective actions, ultimately leading to increased uptime. By gaining advance visibility to potential maintenance issues, fleets can also schedule maintenance during planned downtime, avoiding service visits while the truck is scheduled to be in use.

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Environment Tracking

Truck drivers' on-time delivery is enhanced when mobile data is used to track emerging traffic and weather patterns, approaching truck stops, hotel locations and more. Real-time access to this information enables drivers to cut down on time spent fighting traffic, braving hazardous weather or searching for lodging. It can also speed drivers' access to the right maintenance or repair facility for their needs, thus contributing directly to improved uptime.

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Fuel Economy

Analysis of vehicle data can pinpoint driver behaviors that reduce fuel efficiency, such as excessive idle time, harsh braking or rapid acceleration. Fleets will also be more empowered to select the right product features and other specifications needed to optimize their vehicles' fuel economy. Tailored vehicle specifications will increasingly be relied on to address truckers' emphasis on fuel economy, as well as other user needs.

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Debunking Open-Source Database Myths

Open-source database technology has gained a strong foothold in the data center. Database ranking Website DB-Engines shows a nearly 50-50 split of commercial versus open-source databases. According to a recent report from Gartner, "Information leaders who opt for an OSDBMS [open-source DBMS] licensing model can yield much lower costs than using a commercial model." The community of end users has grown considerably so the cost of finding expertise has come down in recent years. Also, the relational database Postgres has the native capabilities to handle structured data and additional NoSQL functionality to manage unstructured and semi-structured data within the single database management system. Postgres was also developed to be expandable and easily incorporate new data types, indexing schemes and languages without compromising other features of the database. Still, the IT industry harbors...
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