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The Art of Computer Modeling for Business Analytics by Gerald Feigin

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CHAPTER 1

Introduction

1.1 What Is a Computer Model?

A simple question that deserves a simple answer. My answer is that a computer model is three essential things: a mathematical model and solution approach, an implementation of this model in software, and the data necessary to instantiate the model so as to make it of practical value.

A computer model starts out as a mathematical idea, a way of framing a real-world problem in terms of mathematical objects that we can manipulate to obtain results. A queueing model is a good example. The dynamics of how queues are formed and evolve in any real-world situation are highly complex. Take, for example, a traffic jam on a highway or the queue at an airport check-in counter. But if we abstract the notion ...

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