GENERAL INFORMATION/LAYOUT

This help page is for both the Load List and the Truck-List pages, so the following is what appears on each page and what it does. Some of this information is obvious and some is not. It is also to help for people who may know little about web sites and browsers and how they generally work or are not computer savvy, so please ignore the obvious and take what helps. Please note that non-registered users can still use the normal search and the radius search together as a combined search, but the results are erratic and it is not certain that the search criteria will be saved. However, in order for everything to work as intended, it is highly recommended that you create a username and password.

First, some information believed to be important about browsers, just in case you don't know. Internet Explorer 8.0 and probably those before it, as well as Firefox 3.0 allow you to instantly go to the BOTTOM of a page or the TOP of a page by pressing the END key and the HOME key, respectively. In addition, both support CTRL-F, which will open up a "find" function box in the IE header and the bottom of Firefox. This will allow you to type some string of characters and it will find them on the page. IE 8.0 highlights in yellow every occurrence. Firefox does not. All of these functions will be helpful if you had been, for example, looking at a load originating in a particular city and left the page to post a load. CTRL-F allows you to find that load very quickly without requiring a refresh of the page. The Page-Up and Page-Down buttons work as expected, also.

Both the load-list page (List/Manage Loads - Loads->Find loads) and the truck-list page (List/Manage Trucks - Trucks->Find trucks) are designed to be the place where you can go to see and work with all loads and trucks in the respective databases, AND have the ability to "filter" or search (i.e., determine for yourself) what loads are displayed.

In general, the sidebars are used to provide buttons and features that facilitate and add to the purpose of the pages, which hopefully helps you manage and process the data displayed in the middle section, which is where entries for trucks and loads will be displayed. At the top of the list above the field headings of the data, how many database entries were found based on your search criteria is displayed in red and at the bottom of the list is how many entries are currently displayed (use the End key). The only time this number will not be the same is when the maximum of 1000 loads has been reached. The site will not list more than 1000 database entries because much more than that will likely crash your browser.

The first line in the middle section you see is obviously the title of the page. The next line tells you that [the background of] loads will be colored RED or GREEN based on how recently they have been added to the database. In the Load List, the next line tells you to click on Daisy Chain of Reloads™ for help about it. That feature is very powerful and helpful. Clicking there pops up the help screen specifically for that feature.

In "List Mode", after that is the headings for the load/truck data that will be listed under it. In "Manage" mode", there are two buttons before the headings, labeled "Check All" (initially; this changes to "Uncheck All" once clicked, and vice versa) and "Delete". These buttons will be explained more when we get the the checkboxes to be "checked".

The Load List displays three lines per load entry and the Truck List displays two. It is obvious where one entry ends and another starts. The heading lines are indented one character per line and the data lines follow this pattern, with the exception of the last line of load entries.

In the headings boxes and to the right of the actual headings are "status" words in yellow. In general, they tell you what the list of database entries displayed is. For example, the first time, and every time, you come to the Truck List without having done some kind of search during that session, they will say "List - ALL TRUCKS". This means two things: that you are in "List" mode, as opposed to "Manage" mode, and that the list of entries displayed is a list of every truck entry in the database, up to 1000 entries. For loads, a "state" is chosen at random and all loads in the database up to 1000 originating in that state are displayed. Please note that Canadian provinces are considered states and that the Mexican states are also states. The status words will be, for example, on one line each of the three lines of the load headings, "List Mode", "Random state", and "Illinois", reminding you that you are in "List" mode and that the list of loads displayed are all loads originating in Illinois. In both the load and truck lists, this "status" additionally tells you, by implication, that there are no searches active that are limiting or refining what is displayed. When you perform a "search", status messages will change to very briefly describe the kind of search(es) that are active. More information about this part of the screen will be explained in the sidebar explanations below.

Regarding the displayed data, you have already seen that, in the load list in list mode, there is a link to the right of each entry, "Reloads". This link activates the Daisy Chain of Reloads™ feature mentioned above. It is strongly recommended that you understand what this feature does, because it can be of great help to you. You click the Reloads link at the end of the database entry you are interested in and it will take you to the Daisy Chain Page that displays all the reloads in and around the destination city of the load you chose.

If the Contact Name is a link (blue and underlined), clicking it will bring up an email using your email system, addressed to the contact person, and pre-filled with the load or truck information of the entry you chose, into which you can add whatever you want to ask, such as start negotiations for carrying that load. If the Contact Name is not a link, then that person did not supply an email address to which to send or prefers not to receive email regarding this load.

If the Company Name is a link (blue and underlined), clicking it will take you to a screen that shows you the company information, such as full name, address, phone and FMCSA docket prefix and number ("MC number"), and gives you a button to click in order to obtain the credit/risk score for that company for $1.00 and a button to obtain a full credit report for $7.95, if you want it. There is another help screen explaining this in a little more detail on both the Load List and the Truck List, which includes a sample report you can see before you make your decision.

The "Content/Notes" field on load entries is worthy of comment. There are 15 characters maximum displayed in any entry, but the user posting that load can enter 30 characters. Therefore, if that field is 15 characters or less, then that data will be displayed in the load entry. If the data is more than 15 characters, then the text "ViewContentNote" will be displayed in the entry in italics and underlined and, when the mouse pointer is "hovered" over this text, the actual data of the field will be displayed in a small pop-up window.

In addition, both the "Content/Notes", the "Loading Type" and the Pay Advance fields are optional when manually posting a load and when electronically-posted loads are received, and will be displayed as two dashes ("--") if nothing is provided by the posting user.



LEFT SIDEBAR: LOAD/TRUCK SEARCH

In the left sidebar for the Truck List, you will find a button on the top labeled "Display All Trucks". It does exactly that. The load list has no such button because there are generally so many loads that it is not practical to take up the computer resources to list more than a certain number of load entries, and having thousands of loads to scroll through is not really helpful. Therefore, the maximum number of load entries that will ever be displayed is 1000. Otherwise, you find either the "Load Search" or the "Truck Search" form. The first thing below these titles is a button labeled "Clear Load Search" on the load-list page and "Clear Truck Search" on the truck-list page. Before the next button in the left sidebar is explained, let's explain the reason it is there. The forms below the titles allow you to search the databases to significantly narrow down the list displayed, to the point of only one entry, if you like. The "Clear" buttons will clear out all data you may have entered in the boxes of the forms. The results of this is either to return to the list of all trucks or to a list of a state's entries on the load-list page, or, if a Radius Search is in effect (see the explanation for the Right Sidebar below), the trucks/loads found by only that search will be displayed.

Each search "form" contains some instruction and several boxes below the title. These boxes represent most of the "fields" of the displayed data for each entry. You can fill in one, some or all of these boxes and then click on the "Search Loads"/"Search Trucks" button at the bottom of the form, which will require you to scroll down to see. What you enter in these boxes will then be compared to the respective fields of each entry in the database and only those entries that match what you entered will be displayed. In addition, the yellow status message in the headings box will change. On the load-list page, the top line will read "List-LOAD SEARCH:" (Pleaes note that "List-" will be "Manage-" if in manage mode). The next line down will display a shortened name of the first box of the search form in which you entered something (Eg. "Last Date") and the third line will be the value you entered in that box with dots to indicate that this is not necessarily everything you entered in the form. On the truck-list page there are only two heading lines to work with, so the first line of the status message is "List-TRUCK SEARCH:" and the second line contains the shortened field name and the value you entered separated by a dash. This information is intended to let you know at all times what the displayed entries represent.

For search-form boxes that do not contain a list from which you "select" one, generally you can enter any number of characters to match something you are looking for. For example, entering only a "c" in the Originating/Pick-up City search field and clicking the "Seach Loads"/"Search Trucks" button will result in the display of all loads/trucks with Originating/Pick-up cities that start with "C".

Exceptions to this type of matching in non-selecting fields are the date fields in both searches and the Pay Amount and Content/Notes fields in the Load Search. The date search fields, if both are entered, match a load/truck if either search date is within the range of dates of the load's/truck's Available Dates, including those dates. The Pay amount differs from the general matching what is entered only in that, if a plus sign ("+") is entered as the last character of the amount, for example, $600+, then the loads displayed will be those that have a Pay Amount field of $600 or a greater amount. Otherwise, exact matching of whatever number of characters are entered. Whatever is entered into the Content/Notes field is searched for within each load's corresponding field. If found anywhere in that load's field, it's a match.

All the fields in both the load and truck searches are used to match database entries. For example, if $600+ is typed into the Load-Search Pay Amount box and the letter "c" typed into the the Originating-City box, the results will be the display of all load database entries containing an Originating City that starts with "C" AND have a Pay Amount of $600 or more.

This can be very useful, especially since you have all pertinent fields that make up a database entry available to you plus one. As an example of what can be done, you can narrow a display to only entries that are available on a certain date, by a certain company, originating in a particular city (or cities starting with a particular letter or sequence of letters), the destination of which is another specific city for a particular equipment type. Please note that there must be entries in the database that match all these criteria for this type of detailed search to find anything. Of course, if no entries are found to match what you have searched for, the message containing the number of loads displayed will be zero.

The values entered in both forms will remain there until you clear them or replace them, as long as you are are logged into the site and no matter where you go within the site, except to Manage My Loads if you are in list mode or to list mode if you are in manage mode. You can leave the list/manage page, go to post a load or get a Daisy Chain listing for several loads, return to the list/manage page and have displayed for you exactly the list of loads as when you left the page, barring additions and removals from the database during the time away.

One note about searching for truck/trailer types. At the top of the possible truck/trailer types in the search forms are several options, all starting with the word "All" and some equipment type. These are available if you wish to see all similar types, such as flatbed and stepdecks at the same time. Other than these special "types", searches for a particular truck/trailer type will result in the display of only entries that are for that one type.

The Trip Planner™ has similar options in its corresponding field, but those options, instead of starting with "All", end with "(any)", like "Flatbed (any)". However, the Daisy Chain of Reloads™ takes the truck/equipment type from the load on which the "Reloads" link was clicked and will find load entries with types similar to that truck/equipment type rather than specifically the one type of that load data.



RIGHT SIDEBAR: RADIUS SEARCH AND DISTANCE BETWEEN CITIES

The right sidebar in the Load-List contains three buttons within the "Radius Search" form which are counterparts to the clear-search button. The Truck List has only one of these buttons because the Truck List allows only a Pick-up-city radius. For the Load-List, these buttons clear some or all of only that form and in exactly the same way its counterpart in the left sidebar clears the Load Search form.

The Radius Search contains six input boxes. By itself, this feature allows you to enter two sets of city, state and radius, one for an originating city and one for a destination city. Submitting this form filled in so will change the entries displayed in the middle of the screen to only those that are within the originating-city radius miles away from the origination city AND the destination-city radius miles away from the destination city. Of course, you have the option of entering only an originating city, state and radius or the same for a destination city, or both.

This is useful for many reasons, but especially if you happen to just drop off a load in Dallas, TX, for example, and you want to go home but do not have a reload scheduled (see the Trip Planner to avoid such a situation, the form for it is on the Home page; read about it in the Site Description). You would enter "Dallas" in Originating City of the Radius Search, choose "Texas" in the state box, and enter say, 100 (miles) in the Radius box and click the "Search Loads" button at the bottom of the form.

The display will be refreshed and only the load database entries with an originating city that is within 100 miles of Dallas, TX, will be displayed and, hopefully, one that you can carry homeward. The entries found within that radius of Dallas will displayed.

It would be even more advisable to enter, in addition to Dallas, TX as the originating city, to enter the your home base city as the desination city. This would display ONLY database entries originating within 100 miles of Dallas, TX, and which are also destined for within 100 miles from your home base. This means that you can do a radius search for loads so many miles around an originating city of those loads and the same for the destination city of those loads AT THE SAME TIME. The loads that will be displayed represent a straight-shot trip (with probably deadhead miles) from your Originating City or within the entered radius from it directly to or within the entered radius from Destination City

The entries are sorted and displayed with the load containing the originating city that is the closest to Dallas, TX, at the top of the list. The number of miles away from Dallas is displayed in parentheses immediately following the Originating State in each entry. If the Destination City fields were used also or instead, the number of miles would be displayed after the Destination State, and after both states if the entire Radius-Search form were filled in and entries were found.

The load-list page also has a little utility form to calculate and display the distance between two cities just below the Radius Search form in the right sidebar. The results of submitting the form are displayed at the top of the Load-List in red. Submitting this form does not affect the search criteria for the loads that are displayed at that time.

On the load-list page the yellow status message in the headings box will display "List-RADIUS SRCH:" on the first line, the city name, comma, and the number of miles entered via the Radius box on the second line and the city entered via the form on the third line. On the Truck-List page the first line will be the same. The second line will display the city entered in the radius form and the radius separated by a dash.

Now, if you thought the search in the left sidebar might be useful and the Radius Search in the right sidebar is OK, too, get a "load" of this. The two search forms in the two sidebars work together! Using the last hypothetical situation for the Load Search when you were stuck in Dallas, you have entered Dallas, Texas and 100 in the Originating-City fields only, resulting in the display of only the database entries that are in the database and within that radius from Dallas. Now, if you were to choose "Last 30 Minutes" from the drop-down menu of the "Loads added/updated in" field in the Load Search in the left sidebar, and submit the form, that search criterion and what you have already entered in the Radius Search on the right will be used to display only the loads in the database that are within 100 miles from Dallas AND have been entered on the site within the last 30 minutes! I hope you can see the possibilities, given that all those fields in the Load Search form can be used in conjunction with the Radius Search form. Very powerful.

When you do this, the yellow status message on the load list page in the headings box will display "COMBO SRCH:" on the first line, "LS:" (for "Load Search") and the possibly-shortened name of the field entered there on the second line and, on the third line,"RS:" (for "Radius Search") plus the city, comma, and either "Orig" or "Dest", depending on the "Find Loads" box value. On the Truck-List page the first line will be the same. The second line will display the first field name in which a value was entered within the left-sidebar search form and the city entered in the radius form, separated by a dash.

The values entered in both forms will remain there until you clear them one way or another as long as you are logged into the site and no matter where you go within the site, just as mentioned above at the end of left-sidebar contents. The Load List provides you buttons to clear only the Originating-City fields, only the Destination-City fields, or all fields of the form.

Below the Radius Search (load-list page only) is the Distance Between Cities feature. If you are looking at a particular load or just curious and want to know how far away from each other two cities are, you can use this feature to find out. The result is displayed at the top of the page, leaving you with the same list of loads that were displayed prior to using this feature.



MANAGING LOAD AND TRUCK ENTRIES

These pages are not only to be used for just displaying the data any way you want. If you choose "Manage My Loads" or "Manage My Trucks" from the navigation-buttons' drop-down menus in the header of each page, you will be taken to this same page, but you will be in "manage" mode, meaning that you can edit, delete and match loads/trucks to any of the entries posted by your username, which will be the only entries displayed. Hence, the page titles of "List/Manage Loads" and "List/Manage Trucks". In manage mode, all searches from the use of either search form function in exactly the same way, but are limited to just your loads, rather than all in the database.

There will be a "Edit" link, a "Match Trucks" link in the load list or "Match Loads" link in the truck list, and the checkbox mentioned above with "Delete" after it, all to the right of each entry, just like the "Reloads" button from List mode. Clicking the "Edit" button will send you to a page almost identical to the "Post A Load" page, allowing you to change any of the information in the entry, with the exception of contact information exactly like the "Post A Load" page does. Checking the "Delete" checkbox will flag that entry for being deleted, which you can do by clicking on the "Delete" button near the top of the page and mentioned above. The "Match..." button will leave the List/Manage page and take you to the other type of list (to loads from trucks and vice versa), which will already be displaying when you get there all entries that are in the respective database and that match the truck/equipment type of the entry you clicked on and a radius search in place for 100 miles around the Originating/Pick-up City.