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90 DEFINITION OF TERMS Architecture. An architecture is the organizational structure of a system, identifying its com- ponents, their interfaces, and a concept of execution among them. Bill of lading. A bill of lading is a receipt given by a carrier to the shipper acknowledging receipt of the goods to be transported. Business process model. A business process model is a representation of processes. A variety of tools and techniques may be used depending on the specific need, including flow charts, Gantt charts, project evaluation and review technique (PERT) charts, integration definition (IDEF) methods, and business process modeling notation (BPMN). Commodity. Different definitions exist. A common definition is that commodity is a product that can be bought and sold. Another commonly used definition is that a commodity is a prod- uct for which there is demand but is supplied without differentiation. Conceptual model. A conceptual data model is a representation of concepts and their relation- ships. As such, conceptual data models provide a mapping of relationships and rules (e.g., haz- ardous materials can only be routed on certain corridors) that facilitate the understanding and implementation of logical and physical data models. Container. A container is a device that holds or encloses objects to facilitate their movement. A specific type of container is a shipping container. Data architecture. Data architecture is the manner and process to organize and integrate data components. Data architectures usually include one or more of the following elements: business process model, conceptual model, logical model, physical model, and data dictionary. Data dictionary. A data dictionary is a listing that contains definitions, characteristics, and other properties of entities, attributes, and other data elements. An alternative (or complement) to a data dictionary is a metadata document. Data model. A data model is an abstract representation of data characteristics and relationships. Examples of data models include business process models, conceptual data models, logical data models, and physical data models. Database. A database is a structured collection of records stored in a computer system. The structure of the records is documented by using physical data models. Framework. A framework is a basic conceptual structure to address, analyze, and solve com- plex problems. By comparison, a software framework is a re-usable component of a software application. Invoice. An invoice is an itemized list of goods with an account of the amount due to the seller. Item. An item (or product) is an object included in a shipment. Logical model. A logical data model is a representation of data characteristics and relationships at a level that is independent of any physical implementation. Manifest. A manifest is a document that lists the contents in a shipment. Metadata. Metadata (or "data about data") are generalizations of data dictionaries that contain structured information about data. Metadata documents are structured, normally following agreed upon standards, to facilitate information retrieval, use, and management. Examples of metadata standards at the federal level are CSDGM, which is maintained by FGDC, and METS, which is maintained by the Library of Congress. CSDGM became mandatory for federal agencies
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91 in January 1995. Nationwide, state and local agencies are increasingly adopting and using CSDGM, partly because of the availability of user-friendly CSDGM editors such as those included in commonly used GIS applications. Mode of transportation. A mode of transportation is a term that describes a functional combi- nation of vehicles, containers, transportation network, and traffic control. Different modes of transportation involve different combinations of vehicles, containers, transportation network, and traffic control. Common modes of freight transportation in the United States are air, rail, truck, pipeline, and water. Each of these modes of transportation can include subtypes. Motor carrier. A motor carrier is an entity or an individual in the business of transporting goods by truck. Physical model. A physical data model is a representation of data characteristics and relation- ships that depends on the specific physical platform chosen for its implementation. In the con- text of a national freight data architecture, physical models might be developed to illustrate sam- ple applications of the logical model. Product. See Item. Purchase order. A purchase order is a document that conveys the intent to purchase items. Shipment. A shipment is an identifiable collection of items or goods to be transported. Shipper. A shipper is the sender of a shipment. Specification. A specification is a set of requirements that a process, product, or service must meet. Common types of specifications in highway construction include method specifications, performance-based specifications, and performance-related specifications. Common types of specifications used for software applications include functional specifications and software requirement specifications. Standard. A standard is an established reference norm or requirement, usually developed through a collective discussion and approval process. Standards can be developed by single organizations, trade groups, and standards organizations. Data standards are usually established by consensus and are approved by an accredited standards development organization. System. A system is an integrated composite of people, products, and processes, which provide a capability to satisfy a stated need or objective. Traffic control system. A traffic control system is the set of systems, protocols, and procedures that facilitate the safe movement of vehicles on a transportation network. Transportation network. A transportation network is the set of physical elements where a vehi- cle moves and freight can be stored and/or processed. Examples of transportation network com- ponents include terminals, highway and rail segments, waterways, intersections, inspection facil- ities, rail classification yards, ports, land ports of entry warehousing facilities, cross dock facilities, and intermodal facilities. Vehicle. A vehicle is a means of conveyance. A vehicle gives a container locomotion and mobil- ity along a specific path. Depending on its physical characteristics, a vehicle could also provide containment. Waybill. A waybill is a document issued by a carrier describing the origin, destination, route, and other relevant characteristics of the shipment.