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The SimQuick software and booklet have been updated in several ways in this 3rd edition. Here are the key updates:
- Due to improvements in the SimQuick software and the steady advance of computer hardware, SimQuick runs considerably more quickly than when the 2nd edition appeared. This allows more simulations to be performed in a reasonable amount of time, which leads to more accurate results. Hence, more simulations are allowed and recommended in the examples/exercises.
- A new feature called Scenarios has been added. This feature allows you to easily test, at one time, multiple variations on a given model and then compare the results in one worksheet. This feature is described in the new Appendix 3 with examples from the text.
- Another new feature called Changing Distributions allows a statistical distribution to change during the course of a simulation. With this, you can model, for example, customer arrival rates that increase and decrease during the span of a simulated day. This feature is illustrated in Example/Exercise 10, which is new to this edition.
- Models can now allow Work Stations, Entrances, and Exits to be “available” or “unavailable” during a simulation. With this feature you can more easily experiment with the number of workers or machines that are available during a simulation. This feature can also be combined with Changing Distributions to allow a worker or machine, for example, to be available during only some time periods during a simulation. This feature is illustrated in the newly added Examples/Exercises 9 and 10.
- With a new feature called Buffer Tracking you can display how inventory levels (of people or products) vary during a simulation. This allows you, for example, to pinpoint where and when bottlenecks occur, which allows, for example, more accurate adjustments of staffing levels or numbers of machines. This feature is introduced in the newly added Example/Exercise 8 and elaborated in Example/Exercise 10.
- Data entry has been simplified and streamlined with the introduction of pull-down lists within most cells of the data entry tables.
- The discussion of how to perform statistical analyses of SimQuick output (in Appendix 2) has been updated and streamlined by making use of Excel’s built in statistical functions.
- You now have the option to specify a “seed” before starting a run of simulations. By doing this the same sequence of random numbers can be generated each time a group of simulations is run. (However, please note that the sequences are chosen differently on PCs and Apple machines.)