Announcing What’sBest! 18 : New Features 

 

General:

  •  Improved support for SUMIF functions
  •  Resolved a memory issue with large Stochastic programs

 

“Exotic” Excel Functions Support:

  • Assume Linear Option: allows use of any Excel function as long as the resulting optimization model is linear in the Adjustable cells. What’sBest! tests if this is true.
  • Binary Black Box Option: allows use of any Excel function as long as all the Adjustable cells are binary and the model includes no constraints. Linearity is not required.
  • Improved detection and reporting of unsupported formulae

 

Performance Improvements:

  • Significantly better handling of “infinite” Excel ranges, where user specifies an unnecessarily large range, e.g., an entire column.

 

Linear and Integer Solver Improvements:

  • Improved heuristics for general integer programs
  • Average performance improvement of 2-3% on our standard test set

 

Nonlinear and Global Solver Improvements:

  • Faster (order of magnitude) solution of linear fractional programs (ratio objectives)
  • Improved bound tightening process in preprocessing of nonlinear models
  • Auxiliary variables generated automatically to improve performance with complicated expressions
  • Support for additional useful but “problematic” functions: Power utility function (x^g-1)/g and the exponential ratio function (exp(g) – 1)/g, are important in some situations modeling consumer behavior. The solver can now robustly avoid the numerical problems that would otherwise occur when g approaches 0.

 

Linearization Improvements:

  • More expressions can be automatically linearized, so you can now use a fast linear solver where otherwise a much slower (30x?) nonlinear solver might be required.
  • Advanced linearization of QP and Conic models
  • Improved linearization of certain IF expressions.
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