Supply-chain side assistance

  • US 10,445,799 B2
  • Filed: 03/24/2016
  • Issued: 10/15/2019
  • Est. Priority Date: 09/30/2004
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. In a supply-chain for supplying items from a source to final delivery, a computer-implemented method for enhancing the provision of supply-chain assistance, comprising:

  • providing a plurality of locations and conveyances, wherein each location and conveyance has its own independent domain and a computer system in communication with a network and operably coupled to one or more sensors configured to provide signals indicative of aspects of items;

    receiving two types of signals from sensors associated with each location or conveyance indicative of the aspects of items or location of the items on a premises of the location;

    using the two types of signals along with product codes and identification technology comprising an electronically transmitted designator to identify items and when items are present in the location or conveyance, and storing associated information including when a particular item was present and storing conditions associated with its presence, wherein the conditions comprise temperature, vibration, or shock limitations, and further wherein a history is stored, at the locations or conveyances, comprising the identification of items, when the items are present in the location or conveyance, and the associated information;

    receiving a supply chain assistance request with respect to a particular item from a user;

    identifying the particular item having a presence within a geographic locale in response to a sensor signal indicative of an aspect of the particular item, wherein the presence of the item is detected in an absence of a received user input;

    in response to receiving the supply chain assistance request, obtaining over a network a first instance of a supply-chain assistance, providing a first history of the particular item at a first one of the plurality of locations or conveyances during a presence in the supply chain, and corresponding to the identified item from a first one of the domains;

    in response to receiving the supply chain assistance request, obtaining a second instance of a supply-chain assistance, providing a second history of the particular item at a second one of the plurality of locations or conveyances during a presence in the supply chain, and corresponding to the identified item from a second one of the domains; and

    aggregating the first supply-chain assistance and the second supply-chain assistance into a user interface for the requesting user.

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