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Hello,


I am interested in having routing information read into a model from an Excel spreadsheet. The basic problem is that I have several entity types that must be processed at one of many servers. There are capability restrictions (i.e. EntityA can only be processed at Server1, EntityB can be processed at Servers1, 2, 3, etc). I have a “capability matrix” as input data that is a table in Excel showing where each entity type can be processed. In the Simio model, I am using a transfer node to route each entity to an available (and capable) Server by using the “Select from list” entity destination.


My customer is interested in analyzing the impacts of changing capabilities of the servers. Currently, all other inputs to the model are fed in using bound Excel files. However, the routing logic requires lists, which I have to manually create and/or edit. I would like to have these bound to a data table, or somehow reflect the data in the master input Excel file.


Thoughts?


Thanks,


Adam

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I have not looked too deeply at this specific problem for a while (there may be some obvious gotchas I have forgotten), however... have you looked at the Write step, and the bind excel sheet to table?


You can bind excel sheets to tables, which will solve the feeding problem, and you can write out to csv files and use macros in the main spreadsheet to suck in that data.


I have gone off excel sheet DRIVEN models though. The capability within Simio was just not there in making it easier for users. It is painful having to explain to end-users of models that they need to fix the absolute path references to the sheets... and that they must manually import the data into the tables if it caches incorrectly... etc.


I only use excel for examining the results now, and for the rest I use experiments via the API and a written custom application.

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Yeah, running models from bound Excel files is not seamless. However, even that doesn't do what I'm after (unless I'm missing something). I would need a way to get data from the table (bound to an excel/csv file) into a list. Alternatively, I need a way to get the transfer node (or routing group) to select locations from a table.

 

I only use excel for examining the results now, and for the rest I use experiments via the API and a written custom application.

 

Would you mind summaraizing your workflow for using the API for input data? Do you build the model in the GUI and create properties for all your input data? What is your typical input data like? Just curious if I could use a similar approach...


Thanks!


Adam

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I haven't done routing using tables, but I have definitely done server based decisions where each server had a row in the table. And things from server properties to parameters used within the server logic were also in the same row. The search step in conjunction with logic that tells you what the parent object you are in is.... works wonders. It is a staple form of modelling for me now. It is far easier to control parameter values from a table, than via the UI.


As to the usage of the API... as you might guess... the API is not advanced enough to create or even edit models. All of the model development is done via the GUI, and a single experiment is created (with relevant properties to drive it), as experiments can't be created via the API either.


The API is then solely invoked to change the parameters in the experiment, and run the experiment. The CSVs written out from the experiment are then sucked into the program, and processed and displayed in graphs or available to be spat out into pre-made excel sheets.


This reduces the requirement of running a model from needing knowledge of excel + simio (quite a bit of knowledge is required here), to solely needing to run the one custom app and understanding what all the parameters you change do (API can't pull out definition descriptions). The custom app obviously uses the Simio API, but at no time requires the user to open the Simio GUI or touch the model directly.


It won't mean much, but attached are a few screenshots of what kind of data we put in and get out using the custom tool. As you can see, you can add multiple scenarios in, and do the same kind of scenario comparison, and even look at what is happening Gannt chart wise.

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2012-11-13_15-45-17.png.52f2823131970fb75c488119350d4b8c.png

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