Category Archives: Uncategorized

Maximizing the Path Through a Triangle

A coworker recently introduced me to Project Euler, a website featuring mathematical problems intended to be solved with computer programs. The beginning problems are a warm-up and most can be solved by brute-force algorithms. The problems become more complicated as … Continue reading

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Ant Colony Optimization – Coded and Testing

A few months ago I wrote a post about my interest in Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) and my goal to add it to my metaheuristic bag of tricks. I finally was able to code up a version of an ACO … Continue reading

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Piecewise Linear Objective Functions in Mathematical Models

Sometimes when formulating a LP or MIP, you run into the scenario where it is better to have several small occurrences of a bad event (or good event) rather than a single, larger occurrence. Consider a basic machine scheduling problem … Continue reading

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User Experience and Optimization

As an Optimization Consultant, I spend most of my days working with clients and trying to build models and systems to meet their needs. In general, these are operational systems that run on command and the user sees the results … Continue reading

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Additional Constraints Can Sometimes Help Performance

In linear and mixed integer programming, constraints often have a bad reputation. If a model is a family, then the constraints are the parents – making sure everyone does their homework, brushes their teeth, and in general obeys the rules. … Continue reading

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Ant Colony Optimization – Optimizing the Search for Food

When I saw that the latest Informs blogging challenge was OR and food, I immediately thought of the diet problem and minimizing grocery bills while maximizing nutrition (a knapsack problem, perhaps). But I also thought about Ant Colony Optimization which … Continue reading

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My New Year Resolution – Take a Second Look

In thinking about new year resolutions and how I can improve my model building in 2012, I looked back on some of the ways I made big improvements to models I developed this past year. I spent the majority of … Continue reading

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