Orian= the new EDD???

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by Backlasher, Dec 4, 2010.

  1. Backlasher

    Backlasher Stronger, Faster, Browner

    I've heard of a new program in developement called "ORIAN".
    It's like EDD accept it's more developed in that it sets up a smart trace (my words) based on actual stops on your route that day and not just set on a baseline loop system that EDD uses. It works in sink with GPS navigation and is suppossed to be a much more refined trace.
    I'm curious, how well is it developed? Is it as it was told to me? I'd like to here what others might know about it, especially thoughs that are possably in the programming end of it.

    Basically an GPS implented trace that actually works to driver benifit and not just for tracking our location.
    It's sound like a great thing for us cover driver if we run blind on a route.
  2. over9five

    over9five Moderator Staff Member

    Even better! Someone (P-Man?) said that if you break for an oncall or something, it will re-order your remaining deliveries to be in the best order from there.
  3. lvgolfer962

    lvgolfer962 Member

    unless it puts you on the right side of the street more than 75% of the time, who cares.
  4. some1else

    some1else Active Member

    When you have 450 pieces crammed into a 1200 will it retrace based on which stops the loader happened to put near the doors?
  5. brownmonster

    brownmonster Man of Great Wisdom

    Much like PAS/EDD way too much invested for little gain. I run my route based on closing times, air commits, pick up commits, closed for lunch etc. No computer program can match the daily adjustments.
  6. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member

    I have been hearing about ORION for a few years and they continue to refine the technology. I heard that they are testing it and about 300 drivers are using it today.

    I have seen a few presentations on it. While its very sophisticated, it doesn't do everything. At least not at the beginning.

    Re-order after OCA events.... They said not in the initial release, but that will come.
    GPS navigation... Same thing. Not initially, but it will come.

    I've spoken with people that have used it and seen it first hand. Its good but not perfect.

    Like a lot of things, I think it can be great.... or horrible if improperly iplemented.

    Personally, I really like it and am looking forward to it coming out. I think it will change a lot of things.
  7. lvgolfer962

    lvgolfer962 Member

    amen brother. they jammed 350 into the spilt car(p600) i was running yesterday, i had to run of what was jammed up the middle before i could even think about running the route. and the to top it off the spa labels had 2 diffident space numbers with non corresponding shelf/spa numbers.

    i had a fun day
  8. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member

    While I'm sure you are a master at what you do....

    Gary Kasparov, World Champion Chess Player said:

    "Chess is far too complex to be definitively solved with any technology we can conceive of today."

    After losing to Deep Blue, he said:

    "Though I would have liked my chances in a rematch in 1998 if I were better prepared, it was clear then that computer superiority over humans in chess had always been just a matter of time."

    Never say never.
  9. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    Its an interesting analogy, albiet a flawed one.

    There are no variables in chess. The parameters never change, and the rules are a constant. Deep Blue beat Kasparov because advances in computer technology allowed it to simply overwhelm him using brute-force mathematics. Deep Blue was able to reduce the game to a series of billions of mathematical equations. It had no vision, it had no intuition, and it lacked the ability to "play the man instead of the board." It simply crushed him using raw computational power.

    A UPS delivery route isnt an 8x8 chessboard. There is no conceivable way that a computer program will be ever be able to outperform an experienced human brain when it comes to the infinite number of variables that comprise the workday of a driver.
  10. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    I can gurantee you that it will be improperly implemented.

    It will already have been decided ahead of time how much the new program "should" save the driver and the dispatch will be adjusted accordingly, whether that new expectation has any basis in reality or not.

    The success of the new program will be measured by some arbitrary metric and the management team involved will be forced to generate that metric by any means necessary...regardless of the consequences in terms of service, safety, or plain common sense.

    Those tasked with implementing the new program will not be given anything close to the time or resources needed to do so properly. The program will degenerate into a series of quick-fixes, improvisations, and Band-aids piled on top of Band-aids. The underlying problems will never be solved because the management team will be forced to spend 175% of its available time and energy trying to prop the program up so that those above them can pretend that it is working and justify its expense.

    Sorry to be so cynical, but I have been here for 24 yrs and I have seen this movie before.
  11. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member


    Actually, its a bad analogy, but for a much different reason. The point of the analogy was just to say never rule things out....

    The delivery problem is not unique:

    The Travelling Salesman Problem (TSP) is an NP-hard problem in combinatorial optimization studied in operations research and theoretical computer science. Given a list of cities and their pairwise distances, the task is to find a shortest possible tour that visits each city exactly once.
    The problem was first formulated as a mathematical problem in 1930 and is one of the most intensively studied problems in optimization. It is used as a benchmark for many optimization methods. Even though the problem is computationally difficult, a large number of heuristics and exact methods are known, so that some instances with tens of thousands of cities can be solved.

    Remember, 300 drivers are using this today.... Never say never.
  12. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    I would have no problem with the Orion program if it merely suggested the best way that I should run my area. I would have a problem if the program dictated the way that I run my area. As sober and others have indicated, there are far too many variables in the average driver's day for a computer program to account for. For example, my EDD has me delivering one of my residential sections in the early afternoon. There is a school in that area that has asked me not to deliver there between 2:15 and 2:45. This is usually not an issue but if I am running late I will break off to deliver this school early per their request.

    I will be curious if and when this comes to my center. We are still waiting on Telematics.
  13. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member

    I have seen the movie before too. While I will not guaranty its proper implementation, it will not go just as you say. It will be much different, and this I know...

    There will be a target, but not an arbitrary one. The target may be wrong if those using the system do not do their job.

    Management will NOT be told to generate that metric by any means possible. It will be by following THEIR plan. If the plan is bad, then the result will be bad. No arbitrary rules. The plan is purely local. Not corporately directed.

    The team may not be given the time to do it right, just as you said. If that happens, the implementation will be long and slow. The system will then be abandoned.....

    Your cynisism is warranted. Your prediction of conpiracy, coverup, and arbitrary approaches is not.

    Again, 300 drivers are using this now. While I do not know a tremendous amount about this program or its plans, I know much more than others here...

    I'm glad UPS is trying to use technology to improve operations. I think it will be hard and its chance of success are not certain for the reasons you mention.

    This system has a single goal. Reduce miles (and the time associated with those miles) Seems like a perfect example of working smarter not harder.
  14. pretzel_man

    pretzel_man Well-Known Member

    Sorry. Mistake
  15. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    There is more to successfully running a delivery route than simply traveling the shortest possible distance between 2 (or 50, or 140) points.

    And the fact that 300 drivers are "using it" doesnt mean that they are performing their jobs more efficiently because of it.

    We have been on PAS/EDD for about 5 years now, and I can state with certainty that, due to flaws in its implementation, it is only being used at about 50% of its true potential.

    Rather than trying to implement an entirely new program, perhaps we should consider getting maximum value out of the one we already have.
  16. some1else

    some1else Active Member

    Pretzel about the mileage issue.

    Miles cost (alot of) $
    Drivers are rewarded for upping mileage (allowances, "making 8", bonus etc)

    It always confused me but i woukd imagine if there was a way to disincentize mileage there would be a huge savings
  17. Jones

    Jones fILE A GRIEVE! Staff Member

    Making bonus for running less miles, that's an interesting idea with some possibilities. Although I could see where it might lead to an increase in indirect deliveries.
  18. browniehound

    browniehound Well-Known Member

    I'm interested in seeing this Orion system. Let me know if I'm understanding this right, P-man. For instance if my last NDA is a shag will the system re-orginize the trace so that I do the entire area while I am there? Its what I do now and thinks its the logical way to go.

    What sticks out to me is that the packages can't reorganize themselves. In other words, while I would love to complete the entire section with the shag NDA, sometimes its impossible because the truck is full. This means we are going to be delivering the packages out of sequence and this creates many headaches on its own. Wasn't this a main benefit of EDD in the first place?

    I would guess much time would be wasted searching through the 5000 section of a packed truck for 25 house calls. You know there will always be one missing and you can't really sort the section because all the shelves are full. Has this been considered?
  19. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    There is nothing wrong with using technology to improve operations as long as it is done with logic, common sense, and the humility to admit when something just isnt working....along with the willingness to bring expectations into alignment with reality.

    Unfortunately, these qualities (logic, common sense, humility and willingess) are rare commodities in the metric-driven UPS corporate culture of today.

    Reducing miles is a perfect example. In and of itself, reducing miles is a worthy goal...as long as it is pursued with the knowledge that the shortest distance between two points isnt always the fastest.

    I have a "road" on my route that is 2 miles long and is little better than a steep goat trail with gravel on it. It is rutted and potholed to the point where traveling at a speed greater than 10MPH will cause every package on my shelves to be thrown onto the floor. Depending upon the location of the stops (if any) on this road, it can often be quicker (and safer) for me to make a 2.6 mile detour around it using a paved and well-lit road with a 45 MPH speed limit. Shorter doesnt equal faster.

    I know nothing about the new Orion program. I have no reason to doubt its potential...as long as it is still used as a guide rather than a requirement. My gut tells me that we will make the same mistakes with it that we did with PAS/EDD and Telematics......which means that it will be implemented "on the cheap" and promptly buried in a steaming pile of micro-management, conflicting expectations, and arbitrary metrics.

    I hope I'm wrong. I dont think I will be.
  20. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    It hasnt been considered because in IE world, the trucks are never "packed". In IE world, every load is a walk-through and every package is neatly lined up in a row on the shelf with a visible PAL label.