ROI : Return On Investment

CUBEWISE : IBM TM1 / Planning Analytics Business Partner

IBM Planning Analytics powered by TM1 is a business performance management software . In 2020, Cubewise asked me to imagine a puzzle and there would be a prize for the winner. Let me share this story.

Aim : Show that within the Artificial Intelligence buzz Machine Learning is not everything. Optimization matters.

Should big / medium / small corporation have their own optimization team, have their optimization guys spread in (Line of Business) LOB, merged with data scientists or out in optimization firms?


In Freakonomics Stephen J. Dubner/ Freakonomics Radio ( ), Steve Levitt said : “Any economist who tells you that firms are profit-maximizing has not ever worked with firms.” This sentence is a bit extreme so let’s start with that.

All firms have some optimization in mind, maximize profit, reduce cost, improve margin, minimize harm, minimize CO2 emission, maximize efficiency … And Optimization has been used to do…

Command line to call OPL CPLEX model in IBM Cloud Watson Machine Learning / Serverless optimization / Cloudbursting optimization

Optimization is simply doing more with less.

CPLEX is the IBM Optimization tool and OPL is a high level modeling language within CPLEX.

In this article we will see how we can very simply use command line (CLI) and OPL and have CPLEX optimization run in the cloud.

Calling optimization in the cloud and through command line means that on any machine you can call optimization on any machine without installing anything but Python, which means that you can benefit from cloud elasticity and serverless optimization and you can even start for free!

This also means if you are already…

bar chart
Languages bar chart generated from OPL CPLEX through a python call

Part 1 is now in 23 human languages, 23 like the number of chromosomes we humans all have and now it’s time to give more options with computer languages.

IBM ILOG CPLEX Optimization Studio is a prescriptive analytics solution that enables rapid development and deployment of decision optimization models using mathematical and constraint programming.

In that previous post, I gave two examples with the most popular languages for CPLEX : OPL and Python, an algebraic modeling language (AML), and a general programming language (GPL)

Here, I will show many more computer options than OPL and Python docplex (which are the…

Last week I was in Montpellier (South of France) for the ROADEF conference. (French Operations Research Society). I attended many interesting talks and met also friendly customers and colleagues.

Montpellier in France

I gave a small presentation about Operations Research and puzzles where I tried to challenge the audience with some puzzle and some opinion.

In particular, I explained that in puzzles like in business problems, both linear programming and constraint programming within IBM CPLEX / Decision Optimization can help.

IBM Ponder This Challenge is a monthly puzzle IBM Research started in May 1998. Puzzles are not only games but are also very useful for getting better at modeling business problems. They turn human sentences into nice equations and allow us to solve them. The current IBM puzzle master is Oded Margalit from IBM Research Israel in 2020 and I managed to get a selfie with him in Paris.

Two people wearing glasses on a street looking at a camera
selfie with IBM Puzzle Master, he is the guy on the right

Optimization : simply do more with less, zoo, buses and kids

All companies and businesses need to make decisions. Good managers quickly make good decisions. Common sense states that with good data, simple problems lead to simple solutions.

Common sense is wrong.

Let me show that with a tiny example that my maths teacher gave us when I was 14. This is tiny albeit very similar to common business problems.

300 kids need to travel to the London zoo.The school may rent 40 seats and 30 seats buses for $500 and $400 . How many buses of each size do you use to minimize cost?

For many people, the answer is…

Alex Fleischer

Optimization Expert at IBM Europe. His expertise is in computer science, mathematics, artificial intelligence and Optimization. Sup Aéro graduate 1996.

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