Tuesday, May 06, 2008

IS 456 Class V - Homework


Please answer these questions on your blog, based on the articles enclosed in this folder:

* Action learning article:

o Focus on the "Problem solving process" picture, Fig. 4-1.

o There are 6 steps. Which is the most important?

§ ANS: “Reframe the problem” is the most important in my opinion, because it reviews the presented problem and digs deeper to understand if it is a knowledge problem or an Information problem. Framing and Reframing the problem are critical steps of creative problem solving. While Framing the problem, presents it, Reframing the problem scrutinizes the problem further, by asking why. So this step by far is the most important as it provides the information necessary for the root cause.

o Note that 2 new steps are described, before 'determine the root cause'.

* Understanding & Supporting Decision Making.pdf

o What is naturalistic decision making, and how is it different from the traditional decision making, i.e. the theory-hypothesis-test-conclude?

§ ANS: The naturalistic decision making process uses observation as a s first step prior to testing hypothesis. NDM also tries to understand the role of intuition in the decision making process that the theory-hypothesis-test-conclude model does not include in its framework. The premise of the NDM theory is that the scientify investigation of how people makes decisions begins with observation.

* What data mining can't do.docx

o In terms of data, data modeling, data warehousing and data mining, why is more not necessarily better?

§ ANS: Recency and Frequency are two measures that have been around for a long time. Most time they are all we need in the Analytics process. Data collection technology should work toward making these measures more accurate to get a better bang for the buck. Having more data there fore does not necessarily mean it is a good thing, rather, Collecting data geared toward the models you are using should be the right approach. Another train of thought to consider is that suppringly simple spreadsheet models can take you much further, particularly in capturing initial behaviour. As the author puts it “Start Simple”, you will be surprised how much you gain by starting out in the spreadsheet realm.

General Reflections:

* Is there a difference between decision making and problem solving?

ANS: Yes, Problem solving follows the premise that there is an awareness of a discreprency, resources to do it and pressure to act. Tools used for problem solving generally provide a Root Cause Analysis and selection of best possible choices among a series of solutions.

Decision making on the other hand, tries to be “more programmed” and tries to eliminate BIAS from the process of decision making to arrive at a rational approach to process. The steps in decision making normally follow: Identification of a problem, --->identify decision making criteria, --->allocation of weights to criteria. --->develop alternatives--->Analysis of alternatives--->selection of an alternative --> implementation of alternative-->evaluation of decision effectiveness.


* True or false:

o There are good decisions, and there are bad decisions.

§ ANS: False, there on only “decisions”, based on alternatives, analysis of alternatives and selection of alternatives.

o Better information yields better decision making.

§ ANS: True, Better information (as opposed to Bad information) yields better decision making. It can help you develop better alternates and help you allocate weights better.

o Better knowledge yields better decision making.

§ ANS: True, Better knowledge (more actionable pieces of information) yields better decision making.

End of Homework.

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