February 2021

Fantasy sports: Pick the best team

22 February 2021 (1,928 words)

Fantasy sports

"Fantasy sports" is a popular pastime. Like in many real sports, the performance of a fantasy sports team may be determined by relatively small margins. The selection of a slightly better team can lead to substantially better performance.

To help achieve better team performance, we explore a team selection optimization model built in Excel and solved with OpenSolver.


One-dimensional packing: Wire cutting

15 February 2021 (2,086 words)

Wire cutting

"Wire cutting" is a common type of production problem. That is, given available stock of wire (or other one-dimensional stock material) and a list of pieces required, what is the best way to cut the stock to fulfil the requirements while minimizing waste?

The benefits from improved cutting can be substantial, while poor cutting choices can be expensive. To illustrate how an optimization model can help us make the decision, in this article we design, build, and solve a wire cutting problem using OpenSolver.


Production mix via graphical LP

8 February 2021 (2,385 words)

Production mix

"Production mix" planning is a common business problem. That is, given available resources, what mix of products should we make to maximize profit?

With potentially many trade-offs between production choices and available resources, deciding on the best volume for each product can be a complex decision. The gains from making a better decision can be substantial, leading to improved profit and more efficient use of resources.


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