Decision Support System

Modeling multi-criteria tasks to choose the optimal solutions.

Objective

TreeAge has been developing software supported decision-making for more than 20 years. The software creates and analyzes models to assist users in choosing the best solutions and strategies. TreeAge products are used by more than 15,000 end users in such diverse fields as health insurance, pharmacoeconomics, geological exploration, as well as being used for risk minimization in legal proceedings, investment analysis, and similar areas.

One of the goals set by TreeAge was to reach a broader target audience by making the product available across a wider range of operating systems.

Solution

We ported the existing application that was written in C++ for Windows to Eclipse RCP. This made the solution available to Mac OS X and Linux users without having to create and maintain separate code branches for each operating system.

The new platform finally allowed the use of 64-bit memory access, which enabled computing massive models with a large number of nodes directly in RAM at a reasonable speed. This led to a 50-fold increase in performance for large models.

The transition to Eclipse RCP also allowed the users to install updates directly from the application menu without needing to visit TreeAge's website to download updates.

This software solution provides a wide range of features for modeling and decision-making.

Model types

  • Decision trees
  • Markov models
  • State diagrams
  • Influence diagrams
  • Discrete event simulation

Available methods of computing and analysis

  • Probabilistic analysis (Monte Carlo calculations)
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Cost-effectiveness analysis
  • Markov analysis
  • Rough choice of optimal strategies

Technology
Java
Eclipse RCP
OSGi
Equinox
H2 Database
Jython
Eclipse GMF
Eclipse Modeling Framework
Eclipse GEF
BIRT
VBA
Apache POI
izPack
Launch4j
ProGuard
P2
MySQL
Spring Framework
Twitter Bootstrap
NodeJS
React
Apache POI
We have been greatly impressed with Axmor's technical expertise, both in technical research and design, as well as programming.
System Features Overview
1

The user can define variables in the model and filter analysis results using expressions written in the built-in pseudo-language.

2

Formulas and expressions written in Python can also be used in models.

3

Twenty-three types of built-in distributions. It is also possible to define arbitrary distributions as key-value tables.

4

Dozens of graphical and tabular reports for presenting the results of analysis (based on BIRT).

5

Distributed computing: each machine having the application installed can be used as a slave to compute a part of some large model analysis job running on the master machine.

6

Deep integration with MS Excel: export of graphical and table reports; input data sets can be defined in Excel files; Excel can be used as an external engine for model computations.

7

The open API provides access to various functions of the system from your Java or VBA applications.

Support and Development
Since the release of the Eclipse RCP version, the system has been developed exclusively on this platform. We have been supporting and upgrading the system for over five years, constantly adding new features and improving existing ones. For example, in the 2014 version the calculation speed was increased to more than double that of the previous year. This was achieved by restructuring calls to the internal database and optimizing data processing. Enhancements made to the visualization of the subsystem significantly improved the performance of rendering and visual editing for large models with multiple node clones.

In addition to the client application itself, we designed and helped our client to deploy a system for managing product licenses and logging client-side usage patterns. As a result, it became possible to clearly determine the actions and features most demanded by the users as well as the platforms and operating systems most often used. This helps us in planning future development of the product.
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