Data Analysis & Simulation

Archive for December, 2008

How To Speed Up The Distribution Fitting Process?

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

Since fitting probability distributions to large data sets can be a time-consuming task, we are currently researching the possibility of using multi-core processors to make EasyFit work faster. During the past several years, major processor manufacturers have been promoting the multi-core technology on the desktop processors market. Multiple cores in a single chip allow for better performance/price ratio on a range of tasks, however, existing software needs to be updated accordingly to take full advantage of this type of hardware.

We have modified the original distribution fitting algorithm to utilize all cores available on a system, and used it to fit distributions to a simulated set of 200,000 data points. In a series of tests on an Intel dual-core processor, the new algorithm executed almost twice as fast, yielding up to 90% performance increase, compared to the version currently used in EasyFit. These are very good results, and we will definitely be including this feature into the next release of EasyFit.

On a related note, last week we were contacted by a customer regarding our upcoming Simulation & Probabilistic Analysis SDK. They need to analyze large volumes of data, and from their description of the problem we estimated that the typical analysis would take up to 20 hours on a modern PC. With the new distribution fitting algorithm, it can take less than 12 hours on a dual-core CPU, or even less on quad-core processors popular in the server space. In a decision making environment where several hours can mean the difference between profit and loss, this is a very important improvement.

Need To Deal With Risk and Uncertainty in Your Software Applications?

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008

Lately we have received a couple messages from customers asking if it’s possible to use the Monte Carlo simulation and distribution fitting features of EasyFit in their own software applications. The short answer is yes, but these features are limited to calculating some distribution functions in Excel VBA. There’s currently no way to run simulations, fit distributions to data, perform goodness of fit tests, or use distribution functions from C#, C++, VB.NET, and other programming languages.

To fill the gap, we are considering to create a Simulation & Probabilistic Analysis Software Development Kit (SPA SDK) for software developers who need to deal with risk & uncertainty in their applications, but don’t have time or expertise to design and implement the required features on their own. We already have in place the tried and true technology that’s a basis for our distribution fitting products EasyFit and EasyFitXL, so creating an SDK would be possible in a short period of time.

Since we have had only a few requests for an SDK, we would like to know whether you would be interested in such kind of product. Below is our vision for the SDK – you are welcome to express any thoughts or specific requirements you might have. Please feel free to contact us and we will take your input seriously.

Update: The free beta version of the SDK is now available for download – please click here for details.

What is a Simulation & Probabilistic Analysis Software Development Kit (SPA SDK) ? (more…)

Distribution Fitting Help Available Online

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

EasyFit ships with a comprehensive help file providing detailed information on all aspects of fitting distributions to data and interpreting the analysis results. For instance, it includes the description of supported distributions, goodness of fit tests, and output graphs.

If you are considering to try EasyFit but not sure if it has a particular feature you need, you can refer to the EasyFit help online which we have made available on our website for your convenience. Of course, you are still welcome to contact us for any questions regarding EasyFit or fitting distributions in general.

Ordering Our Distribution Fitting Software on a CD

Friday, December 5th, 2008

From now on, our distribution fitting software EasyFit can be ordered on a CD, in addition to the download version. The motivation for adding this feature was that in some countries it is required for accounting purposes. Most times you won’t need a CD since EasyFit is available for immediate download from our website, but if you do need it, you might find this feature useful.

The CD will be produced exclusively for you, and will include the EasyFit installation package along with your personal license key and registration details in a separate file.

The CD is priced at $14.95, including shipping. To receive a CD, check the option “Order this product on a CD” and make sure you specify a valid postal address when filling in the order form. Once your order is processed, you will immediately receive your license key via email (so you can start using EasyFit right away), and the CD will be shipped to you in a few days.

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