ExtendSim AT

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Overview

ExtendSim AT supports the needs of midsize and larger companies, simplifying the modeling of complex processes and can scale as your company grows. An integral part of Lean, Six Sigma, Risk and Throughput Analysis, Big Data, and Capacity Planning projects, ExtendSim AT is designed for simulating, analyzing, and optimizing systems.

The AT package adds a robust message-based discrete event architecture plus discrete rate technology for intuitive modeling. Use it to track and analyze the behavior of physical or logical entities when events cause them to change state or move through a system. Here are just a few of its features:

Priorities, preemption, reneging, jockeying, blocking, and balking

Customizable attributes and rule-based routing

Batch and unbatch items for processing

Statistical analysis with confidence intervals

Warm-up periods with statistical clearing

Shifts for controlling resources and activities

Resource pools for optimizing constraints

Customizable queuing algorithms

Item templates for fast model building

Scenario Management

Design and run experiments on models.

Scenario ManagerExplore projected outcomes as the Scenario Manager varies model inputs. Results change as the input changes; thus, run multiple experiments with the same model.

The ExtendSim Scenario Manager gives the MOST COMPLETE understanding of how a model reacts to different factors.

To facilitate analysis, all data is stored in an ExtendSim database. Data and results can then be easily exported to JMP or Excel for further analysis.

Essentially, the ExtendSim Scenario Manager keeps track of multiple what-if models, all based on the same model. It does this by assigning a named scenario to each combination of variables you choose to examine. For example, create best-, worst-, and typical-case assumptions for input values. Then recall each of these scenarios to see how the model behaves under different conditions. For comparative analysis, recall scenarios in combination, such as best-case sales and worst-case costs.

The ExtendSim Scenario Manager offers a highly flexible framework for experimentation and analysis:

Define factors (inputs) and responses (results) for any number of scenarios. Inputs and results can be dialog variables, databases, database tables, database fields, records, or any combination of these.

All scenarios are automatically run multiple times and responses are recorded in an internal database.

A report is generated showing the average, standard deviation, variance, maximum, minimum, and confidence interval for each response and scenario. Each line in the report represents a single scenario that has been run multiple times.

Any number of scenarios can be generated. The individual responses from each scenario are available at the click of a button at any time.

The Scenario Manager has a built-in interface to the JMP statistical software from SAS. Through this interface, JMP's design of experiments engine can generate the scenarios. The responses can also be exported to JMP for advanced analysis.

Advanced Resource Management (ARM)

Maximize resource utilization.

Resoure Management in ExtendSimWhenever supply and demand is an issue, management of resources is essential. Advanced Resource Management (ARM) in ExtendSim is an integrated system for organizing resources, distinguishing between them, and allocating them throughout a model. ARM provides a convenient and straightforward way to define complex resource requirements for items and a flexible set of rules for how resources get allocated to them. Plus, it provides automated methods for quickly changing resource information and generating statistical reports.

The ExtendSim ARM system's organization and allocation architecture is fueled by an ExtendSim database that represents, manages, and tracks the states and properties of resources, pools, groups, and allocation and release rules. Six blocks on the ExtendSim roster form the ExtendSim Advanced Resource Management team. At the heart of the ARM is the Resource Manager providing a convenient dialog-based interface to:

Create, modify, manage, and delete resources.

Use pre-defined resource properties, or create custom properties, to distinguish resources and track their status.

Associate individual resources with a particular resource pool; nest pools within pools.

Define resource groups consisting of resources from one or more pools; assign properties to groups

Create complex resource requirements using filtering conditions, quantity expressions, and nested AND/OR logic.

Declare custom resource allocation policies based on item properties

Use pre-defined resource release rules or create custom rules for resource requirements.

Automatically log resource allocations, releases, and status transitions to the internal database.

Discrete Rate Constructs

Rate-based functionality for modeling bulk systems, such as packaging lines, chemical processes, or network traffic. Use it to specify rates of flow for any high volume or high speed system, then delay and route the flow using attributes, constraints, and rules.

Excel Add-In

ExtendSim AT includes an Add-In for Excel that allows you to completely specify a new ExtendSim database in Excel, including parent/child relationships, cell randomization, named distributions, and more, then export the database for use in ExtendSim models.

Query Equation Capability

Query Equation capability for ranking database records is indispensable when a database holds information that is required for making decisions in a model. For example, use this sophisticated tool to search a database table for the best record.

Plus more advanced modeling features:

Plus all the core features from ExtendSim CP - databases, data linking, hierarchy, interactivity, and so forth.

Import fitted distributions directly from the included Stat::Fit distribution fitting package from Geer Mountain Software


Testimonial

"I looked closely at the ExtendSim discrete rate blocks and documentation. I find this to be a phenomenal piece of development. I don't think it is an exaggeration to say that the discrete rate block set is the best extension of the ExtendSim environment ever released by anyone and it is exciting to think about utilizing this capability in future models for my clients.

The ExtendSim Rate library is such a complete (approaching perfect) implementation that I feel compelled to be detailed in my review. It simply meets and exceeds all of (my) expected standards of ExtendSim blocks . . .

The architecture is truly elegant. From residence blocks defining rate sections, unit groups and unit conversion, basic (reasonable) flow rules that clearly define movement and recalculation, and of course the use of LP. I think you will find many users quickly grasping how cool this is and will be building it into models just because it is cool. The architectural vision behind this capability is just amazing. I love software elegance. I wish I could figure out how to do it in my custom blocks, and I have a deep respect for those who can actually pull it off.

It appears that all user levels of ExtendSim will be able to leverage it. A basic rate-based model can be built with only a minimal, intuitive understanding of the blocks, but there appears to be no limit to the depth/complexity/detail of a system that can be built in this construct (see elegance above). I think user diversity is one of the best measures for whether a block set is successful (useful) and discrete rate clearly meets this standard.

Even the icon animation is thoughtful in detail and usefulness. Thank you for not minimizing this in the development.

My congratulations to Cecile and the rest of the ITI group for understanding the need and executing the capability absolutely right."

From Jim Dailey of James Dailey & Associates