Transportation As Its Been

So long as we’ve had goods to move, we’ve had transportation. But, before we can understand the importance of transportation and shipping, we have to understand a little bit of what it is and where it has come from. There are a lot of elements that go into transportation when looking at it from a macro scale. There is the transportation broker, the types of load boards, tl shipments, broker systems, transportation broker software and so many other less technical things. It is a wide ranging and intricate global system that we have set up but it has a few basic components that need to be critically understood. Let’s start a little farther back, however, and look at the history of transportation as it has developed in the past couple centuries. Before the advent of the age of exploration, transportation was limited mainly to two forms of power. One was exclusively human power. You had to get people to move whatever they could with their own bodies and spirits and wills. The second type of transportation power was, of course, animal power. This was the main source of power for most societies and it worked well enough. It wasn’t nearly as efficient as the major external engine powered machines we have today but those would not come along for another couple centuries. The broker systems, digital systems, economic systems and all of the other systems we would use to make our modern society what it is today simply did not exist yet. Instead, people moved what they could through the use of whatever domesticated animals they had available. Horses, where possible. Camels, cattle, whatever it was. It depended on the local culture and available animal resources, however. The only exception to this rule might be the region of Oceania and the Pacific Islands where transportation was, by necessity, primarily boat based even from the outset. Most land locked regions, however, relied on whatever large pack animals could carry their goods from one place to another. Perhaps the most famous example of a road that facilitated mass transportation for a good part of history was the Silk Road which helped support trade from Asia Minor to Europe to greater Asia and Africa. Traders would often use this road by traveling from distant place to distant place using, yes you guessed it, huge caravans of horses and camels that could transport their goods. The only issue was that large caravans were often targets of bandits who would steal these goods where they could. In the wilds between cities and towns, there simply was no good law enforcement body that could prevent raids.
Broker systems, Transportation and the Future
So how and when did this change? Well, sometime around the start of the sixteenth century, Europe and China began to send out huge ships specifically for the purpose of finding new places and seeing what resources they could take. It wasn’t exactly the most ethical source of transportation but it did happen to show these countries that the true future of trade was in literal shipping. For the next three centuries, many countries across the world invested in better and better ships that could move goods efficiently over long distances. Efficiently is a relative term, of course, compared to our day and age but it really was quite a revolution in the speed of transportation in those days. Whereas overland travel was dangerous and a pretty big risk for everyone, travelers and investors alike, shipping was safer and much quicker. The only risk was piracy which became a pretty moderate problem but never quite the scourge that overland bandits had been. The ocean was simply so large that the chances of just running into someone was pretty slim. For the age of exploration and then the classical period known as the Enlightenment that came afterward, shipping was huge but then the industrial revolution arrived and things really kicked off. Engines meant steamships and eventually cars and planes while faster travel meant that more and more goods could be transported without risk. Today, with our broker systems, the internet and other digital commodities and trade agreements, transportation and shipping have never been safer and easier. Who knows what the future might bring next?

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