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A brief history of Scheduling

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Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi,

I was searching the net to see what Dupont has done since 1958 when they came up with the CPM, and I came across the following article that mentions SPIDER.

www.pmforum.org/library/.../A_Brief_History_of_Scheduling.pdf

Anyone who can shed some light on the latest progress, it would be good to read.

Enjoy,

With kind regards,

Samer

Replies

Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

Let me read what you come across. It will be interesting.

Make sure that you read the artical in post 115.

With kind regards,

Samer
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

Thanks for the reference, is not available because it is a for profit article. Found the PhD Thesis available on the web. I will take a look at it latter as we just got awarded a new job. I also found on the web a presentation in Chinese or Vietnamese but the few English words got me interested.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

Now the Dynamics factor comes in. Not at the right time of Scheduling, but this is a start. With the help of google:

"
FLORA: New Forensic Schedule Analysis Technique
by Long D. Nguyen, Ph.D., (Constr. Consultant, Jax Kneppers Assoc., Inc., Walnut Creek, CA 94598. E-mail: long@jaxkneppers.com) and William Ibbs, (Prof. of Constr. Mgmt., Dept. of Civ. and Envir. Engrg., Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA 94720; presently, Pres., The Ibbs Consulting Group, Inc., 5932 Contra Costa Rd., Oakland, CA 94618 (corresponding author). E-mail: drcwibbs@aol.com)

Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, Vol. 134, No. 7, July 2008, pp. 483-491, (doi 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9364(2008)134:7(483))

-----------------------------------------------------------
Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: While various factors such as float ownership, logic change, and resource allocation (FLORA) affect results of delay analysis, existing delay analysis techniques tend to ignore most if not all of them. To address this insufficiency this paper proposes a new schedule analysis technique called FLORA that simultaneously captures the dynamics of float, logic, and resource allocation in its analyses. FLORA analyzes not only the direct impact of a delay but also its “secondary” effect. The analysis process follows ten rules that are flexible and customizable. A case study is employed to illustrate its application. FLORA yields different and more reasonable outcomes compared to the window analysis technique. Each single analysis may also yield different or even conflicting results. By properly dealing with the current issues of schedule analysis, FLORA can be more reliable. Practitioners may readily accept its analyses and outcomes because they are able to specify, modify, and consent to the rules for schedule analysis to fit into a specific context in advance. Researchers may further evaluate the impacts of different factors on delay responsibility or apply FLORA to real projects to assess its strengths, weaknesses, and potential improvements.
"

If anyone gets the paper, please share what they are talking about in more details. It would be interesting to know.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi PP,

The is another natural solution:

Applying an Ant Colony Optimization Algorithm-Based Multiobjective Approach for Time – Cost Trade-Off
by Ying Xiong, Ph.D. Candidate, (School of Economics and Mgmt., Beijing Jiaotong Univ., Beijing 100044, China. E-mail: xy72@yeah.net) and Yaping Kuang, (Instructor, School of Civ. Engrg. and Arch., Zhejiang Univ., Hangzhou 310027, China; and, Ph.D. Candidate, School of Economics and Mgmt., Tongji Univ., Shanghai 200092, China.

Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, Vol. 134, No. 2, February 2008, pp. 153-156,

Abstract: The time.cost trade-off is one of the most crucial aspects of construction project planning, which in fact is a combinatorial optimization problem. This technical note employed an evolutionary algorithm — ant colony optimization (ACO) algorithm to deal with the time – cost trade-off problems. Combining with the modified adaptive weight approach, the ACO algorithm can find out the optimal solutions, and define the Pareto front as well. The development of the ACO-based multiobjective approach in this technical note provides an attractive alternative to solving construction time – cost optimization.
"

So with the help of google, I think that the tool makers can find plenty of improved solution on the net.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi,

This might offer another solution as well:

"
Productivity Scheduling Method: Linear Schedule Analysis with Singularity Functions

Gunnar Lucko,1 A.M.ASCE
1Assistant Professor, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Catholic Univ. of America, Washington, D.C.

This paper describes a new integrated method of linear schedule analysis using singularity functions. These functions have previously been used for structural analysis and are newly applied to scheduling. Linear schedules combine information on time and amount of work for each activity. A general model is presented with which activities and their buffers can be mathematically described in detail. The algorithm of the new method forms the body of the paper, including the steps of setting up initial equations, calculating pairwise differences between them, differentiating these to obtain the location of any minima, and deriving the final equations. The algorithm consolidates the linear schedule under consideration of all constraints and, thus, automatically generates the minimum overall project duration. The model distinguishes time and amount buffers, which bears implications for the definition and derivation of the critical path. Future research work will address float and resource analysis using the new model.

"

But all these solutions need funding to come up with some commercial new tool.

Time for the tool makers to invest in the future.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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I am a big fan of google.

"Research on the fully fuzzy time-cost trade-off based on genetic algorithms "

Jin Chao-guang1, 2, Ji Zhuo-shang1, Lin Yan2, Zhao Yuan-min2 and Huang Zhen-dong2

(1) Ship CAD Engineering Center, Dalian University of Technology, 116025 Dalian, China
(2) Dalian Shipyard Co. Ltd., 116005 Dalian, China

Received: 21 June 2005

Abstract It is very difficult, to estimate exact values of time and cost of an activity in project scheduling process because many uncertain factors, such was weather, productivity level, human factors etc., dynamically, affect them during project implementation process. A GAs-based fully fuzzy optimal time-cost trade-off model is presented based on fuzzy sets and genetic algorithms (GAs). In tihs model all parameters and variables are characteristics by fuzzy numbers. And then GAs is adopted to search for the optimal solution to this model. The method solves the time-cost trade-off problems under an uncertain environment and is proved practicable through a giving example in ship building scheduling.
"

If anyone gets the complete paper, please offer to share what the details are.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi PP,

This paper has a good title, and info, but not a clear conclusion. I am sure that some elements will be used in the new solution:

The time-cost trade-off analysis in construction project. www.tede.vgtu.lt/upload/ukis.../tede_vol15_no4_523-539_blaszczyk.pdf

If you do not get the link, cut and paste the title in google.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi PP,

This is common sense talking:

When is the Critical Path Not the Most Critical Path?

http://www.icoste.org/AACE2008 Papers/Toronto_ps07.pdf

I am sure that something good will come up, but it is taking time.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi PP,

This sounds interesting:
"
Title: Integrated models for construction planning: object flow and relationship
Author(s): M. ALSHAWI, Z. HASSAN

Journal: Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management

Year: 1999
Volume: 6
Issue: 2
Page: 197 - 212
ISSN: 0969-9988
DOI: 10.1108/eb021112
Publisher: MCB UP Ltd

Abstract: Sharing and exchanging information between project participants are basic requirements for developing construction plans. An isolated construction planning knowledge-based system is no more useful and beneficial than any another ‘island of automation’ unless the integration with other construction applications are addressed. This paper proposes conceptual data and process models for a construction planning system, CONPLAN (Intelligent CONstruction PLANning), which works within a fully Integrated Construction Environment (ICE). An object oriented methodology (James Martin) has been used to establish generic construction models within which other construction applications can be integrated. This paper also introduces briefly the modularized approach that has been adopted to integrate the various construction applications over the project life cycle.
"

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

Here is an article with a sensible conclusion:

A Critical Look At Critical Path Analysis
I’ve finished so I’ll start
A critical look at critical Path Analysis

John Bolton, Programmes Director, Parallel Project Training

http://blog.parallelprojecttraining.com/project-management-a...

Thanks to google of course.

With kind regards,

Samer
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

The following is the full link as copy and paste of the posted did not work.

http://www.oracle.com/ocom/groups/public/@ocom/documents/webcontent/0427...

For a start I find it to be a paper directed to satisfy the ego of the author "compliant with RDCPM". The use of codes to identify relationships in CPM started with the development of the very first network, even activities do have codes or names, and there is nothing new.

It confirms my suspicion that Mr. Plotnick is biased towards Primavera Oracle as well as many other members of the PMI. It is not that the paper is wrong, is the way the issue is presented. Instead of filling his ego by certifying compliance with a specific procedure he should be working with Primavera to provide true Float values after resource leveling.

I believe Primavera Risk does not creates the resource links for you, you still got to manually enter them, it does not even calculates true float unless you figure it out yourself these relationships that can change whenever you update the network.

Can Primavera Risk provide you with the resource dependencies relationships and true float after resource leveling a 2 activities job, none linked to the other by predecessor/successor logic, both requiring the same resource of which only one is available? If the answer is no then what is the value of the certification?

Best regards,
Rafael

PS. Done, article to the garbage can.
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi,

This is the recent evolution in CPM per google:

Using Relationship Diagrams to Enhance the Critical Path Method

www.oracle.com/ocom/groups/public/@ocom/documents/.../042744.pdf

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi Mimoune,

What I find amazing is that we continue to use the same thing without improving it. This is a unique natural thing it seems. Using the process for 50 years without improving it.

We know that 1+1=2 and we know that CPM is logical because you get to understand the small example. But once you get to multiplications on the order of thousands of activities, your calculator is the black box, and your refined management system to make sure that you input the data correctly.

I think that we have 50 years old engine on nice sport car now. All it take is a team of 10 people at MIT or at Vladimir’s company for a year or two and we will have a new engine.

With kind regards,

Samer
mimoune djouallah
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Samer that’s exactly what i have said before CPM is a simple method, and btw i don’t understand why ALAP is different from spider to ms project !

but CPM don’t take into account resource constraints, now different software have different output. and each package has a different approach

http://pmbook.ce.cmu.edu/10_Fundamental_Scheduling_Procedures.html#10.9 Scheduling with Resource Constraints and Precedences.

Samer , just to make it clear i am not pretending to have a clue about all this, i am just learning.

best regards

mimoune
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Mimoume and Vladimir,

Once we start talking about "NP-hard problem" or any other mathematic theories, then it is not CPM. And you can not associate it with CPM because CPM is simple.

I agree with you that current softwares in the market have their own add one. But I also believe that CPM results for the same model must not change from one software to another. When you keep it simple, you can predict it. If you try to use the fancy options that the "user friendly" softwares is offering, and you have no idea about the mathematical formula that is governing the equations when you press the botton, then how would you be able, as a user/ responsible party, to expalin then and be responsbile for them.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

I have completed all the courses graduate and undergraduate in Civil Engineering. Statics, Dynamics, Operation Research, linear and non-linear theories, and I have taken close to 1000 training hours in the past 3 years in different fields :).

Please note that I have also written a three dimensional finite element analysis program for Structural frames twenty years ago. But this is not what I did since then. I have been managing projects.

The last Internation software black box that I debugged 14 years ago took me 9 months and i found around 70 errors. Do not worry about my mathematical understanding of CPM, it is simple. But I do not have the time to get into it at the moment.

I think some common sense and an excel sheet is enough to manage up to $500M projects in my experience.

With kind regards,

Samer
Hi Samer,
I never heard about Quintiq.
I will look at their site.
Mimoune described the problem correstly:
CPM is very easy and different softwares will produce different results only when they uae different constraints (ALAP in P^ and Spider is not the same as ALAP in MS Project).

Spider Project includes resource constrained scheduling optimization algorithms that produce the solution that is close to optimal.
Besides it levels materials and costs.
This is much more complicated.

Regards,
Vladimir
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

In general terms the tools can be called to be part of applied mathematics.

Look for the following applied mathematics terms; Operations Research and Applied System Analysis. Also look for the terms; algorithm, branch and bound, linear programming, non-linear programming, queuing, mathematical simulation and Monte Carlo Simulation.

Best Regards,
Rafael
mimoune djouallah
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samer

as i am on my rotation, i got some time to read about mathematics ;) from my understanding CPM algorithm is a very simple mathematic problems and there is no reasonable reason to have different output by different software. because there is only one solution to the problem (i suppose we use some calenders, resource are unlimited)

but once we start speaking about resource constraints, it become different stories as it become NP-hard problem.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NP-hard

so actually each software use different heuristic algorithm, and different approach, thus different results.

it will be interesting to have a independent study to compare the robustness of each software package regarding scheduling under limited resources.

best regards
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi Vladimir,

Do you have any idea about what these guys are using:

http://www.quintiq.com/
"
Advanced Planning & Scheduling Software Solutions
Quintiq Advanced Planning & Scheduling software is unique in the sense that it comprises standard software creating an exact fit to the customer’s needs. The Quintiq advanced software is applicable for strategic, tactical and operational planning and real time event management needs. Unique are the large scale and multistage planning solutions that can be created with Quintiq, enabling it to provide integrated enterprise wide, multi-site and (logistic) supply chain solutions.

Advanced Planning & Scheduling Software Solutions that empower your competitive advantage by enabling you to solve the most complex planning and scheduling puzzles.
Employee Scheduling (Staff, Employees, Shifts and Personnel)
"

With kind regards,

Samer

Thank you, Mimoune,
I will look at this development.
I don’t expect that genetic algorithms will be efficient for large projects but in any case it is interesting.
Best Regards,
Vladimir
mimoune djouallah
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vladimir

for your reading pleasure, http://www.librcps.org/
it is used in kplato, an open source scheduling software
http://www.koffice.org/kplato/


best regards.

Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi,

This is what the Masters think:
"
http://www.ics-global.com/IG-CPObsolete.html

July 30, 2008 - Cyberspace
After months of planning and development, the PMI College of Scheduling hosted its first educational webinar series in July 2008. Entitled "Scheduling with the Masters," according to its own promotional material, this series "is dedicated to helping the scheduling professional handle the demanding workload of complex scheduling. Our speakers will feature insights and observations from a variety of perspectives to provide you with a unique view into work and resource planning, along with overall schedule creation and maintenance, designed to make you better at your job."


Is "Critical Path" Obsolete?
"

It has a 1 hour prestation as well.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi,

Someone is doing something:

CPM Task Force

CPM Task Force. Mr. Seth Schulgen- CHAIRMAN. Williams Brothers Const. Co., Inc. sschulgen@wbctx.com. Mr. Brad Everett. J.D.

www.agctx.org/assets/files/taskforce/cpm.pdf

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi PP,

This is a good article to read. On page 5, it states that CPM came to existance in 27 months as a result of the need to manage a $90M project.

That means that any project over say $1Billion, can afford to hire the best and get a more comprehensive solution that everyone can adopt.

A Short History of Modern Project Management By Alan Stretton

www.pmforum.org/library/second-edition/.../Stretton-10-07.pdf - Similar

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi PP,

A publication from a good source:

Wickwire, Hurlbut, and Lerman, Use of Critical Path. Method Techniques in Contract Claims: Issues and. Developments 1974 to 1988,
www1.fidic.org/resources/contracts/icc_oct05/wickwire_icc05.pdf

The Construction Lawyer, Journal of the Forum on the Construction Industry, Volume 19, Number 4, 1999

Use of Critical Path Method on Contract Claims – 2000.
Jon m. Wickwire and Stuart Ockman.

Introduction:
“… failure of modern scheduling software to require the discipline and realism necessary to plan and schedule complex construction projects. Although most construction attorneys see only the final printouts and schedules, it is important to understand where the potential abuses lie and what must be done to uncover them”

They came to the same conclusion that has been reached here until now.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi,

This is a good summary, and good advice.

Journal of Construction Education Copyright 1997 by the Associated Schools of Construction
Fall 1997, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 222-230 1522-8150/97/$3.00/General Manuscript
Construction Scheduling Specifications
Stephen J. Krone
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, Ohio


www.ascjournal.ascweb.org/.../Fall%201997,%20Vol.%202,%20No.%203,%20pp.%...

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafeal,

I can tell you what I am doing, I ask for the simplest form of Program of Work that a Contractor can manage to his ability. The solution for a Program of Work is Contractor Dependent. Contractor submit the Program of Work and present their plan to complete the work. If they are committed to complete the Job No Schedule in necessary.

When Contractors give me 15 programs of works every month with 1000’s of activities in each, it is very simple to debug and return with more speed than the printer that printed them, for the simple reason that they are full of errors and not based on correct planning.

Action will come when we get to send a letter to PP Admin to form a team and provide new standards. This seems how humans are improving their systems. They chat for a while and then form a task force, this task force creates a solution. Then, you either become a company, a education institute, etc.

It seems that we have PP members + Sponsors + Spider = New Industry Standards.

With kind regards,

Samer
PS. The equation proposed before is missing the Rafael’s ingrident "Dynamic", stay tuned.
Rafael Davila
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Sammer,

The computer does what it is programmed to, the CPM software will follow the rules embedded in the computational algorithms therefore the inconsistency is on the scheduler not the software, and in any case it should read there is no reason why the computer cannot be programmed to tell me that my scheduling input is “potentially” inconsistent and why. I s a warning about a potential trap that need not to be so.

There are metrics that can be programmed to warn us about the potential traps. Also the implementation of finish constraints can be improved simply by not allowing for the constraint to change CPM backward pass computation but merely to provide a flag to warn you if the constraint is projected to be met or not. Yes software can be improved but unfortunately those complaining are doing nothing positive to force true progress.

Tell me how many of them are actively warning about the gross mislead by most software when displaying wrong float after resource leveling. Tell me how many of them are actively complaining about the implementation of constraints that create negative float in the relevant forums. It would even be better if they concentrate on providing the functionality themselves. We need action people not Bull Sh…ers.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi All,

I found this that also supports the same thing; reply from the founder of CPM to the article of 2003:


idea.library.drexel.edu/bitstream/1860/2934/1/Plotnick_Fredric.pdf
RDM
Relationship Diagramming Method
A Thesis
Submitted to the Faculty
of
Drexel University
by
Fredric Leigh Plotnick, Esq., P.E.
in partial fulfillment of the
requirements for the degree
of
Doctor of Philosophy
August 2008


Responding to the ENR article just cited, the co-founder of CPM, James E. Kelley, Jr., writes:
Your cover story, Critics Can’t Find the Logic in Many of Today’s CPM Schedules, paints a disheartening picture of the current state of CPM schedules (ENR 5/26 p. 30). It’s only 46 years since Morgan Walker and I first worked out CPM for duPont and yet project people are still falling into some of the same scheduling traps warned against during CPM’s childhood. The use of features like "leads and lags," "multiple calendars" and "assigned constraints" do provide some levels of schedule flexibility. In practice, their use too often leads to inconsistent schedules and misleading views of project condition.
In the early days of CPM, computing capability was at a premium. Rooting out inconsistencies in scheduling data had to be left completely to the planner. In practice, this meant deliberately limiting the use of the "flexibility" features. Today, the desktop computer I’m using to compose this letter has far more capability than the UNIVAC we used for our first CPM calculations. Thus, there is no reason why the computer cannot be programmed to tell me that my scheduling input is inconsistent and why.

… and this was the last part of the conclusion of the Thesis:

“The full promise of CPM was limited by the power of early computers. But now, as computing power has become more available and affordable, it is time to revisit the original “engineering fixes” of the early CPM programs, replace the duct tape, chewing gum and bailing wire with better adhesives, and once again embrace the full potential of CPM for management of our infrastructure construction projects. And then the Schedulers and Project Managers for these projects should lead by example for all projects, programs and operations requiring planning as well as scheduling.


So basically, almost everybody is saying using CPM without management is a mess at this time. It seems that I am doing a Forensic Analysis on CPM. Effective management (so far) seems the minimum required tool for reasonable CPM use.

With kind regards,

Samer

Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

So we agree that the "Best Schedule" must be a mathematical model accompanied by a management systems implemented company/project wise.

Instead of the term best, I would like to use the "Valuable Schedule" for the simple reason that Owner’s decision is based on the value they associate with the item they buy to suite their needs.

So you need to develop a range of tools to serve the need of the Owners. It is not one size fits all.

With kind regards,

Samer
Dear Samer,
I don’t like the use of term CPM. CPM is the method to schedule the project ignoring resource and other constraints.
Management is about managing resources and cost and time savings are created by proper usage of limited resources.
So people created computer models of their projects to be able:
- to optimize project cost and duration by the best possible use of their restricted resources,
- to understand what reserves shall be created for project risks,
- to understand what targets are reliable and achievable (at least project duration and budget),
- to have reliable information on the project status and trends,
- to estimate the consequences of potential actions (including change requests) before making the decisions,
- to store the performance archives for future analysis and potential use for claims analysis.
There are other benefits that I did not mention but I think that those in the list are primary if we discuss the management of the single project.
But it is not enough to calculate the best schedule. Without proper PM system your schedule will be based on non-reliable data and will not be properly used.
So Mathematics serves to Management for proper decision making, it is a tool for good decisions.
Best Regards,
Vladimir
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Team,

It seems that logically we (humans in natures) have seleted the CPM to save time and cost on construction projects. So the question is now a holistic approach to Scheduling.

It also seems that the current evolution of CPM is that it is adding Management. So now we have

CPM= Cost + Time savings = Mathematics + Management.

Thanks to our good friends at google, things are moving faster in the world of answering questions. Since the father of Management is Peter Drucker, google pointed out the following

www.knowledgegenes.com

These guys have their eyes on the ball and they are talking common sense. They are talking about "Critical Performance Management". They are talking about "Defining the High Level Requirements", Systems Development and Process Development, and Lean Thinking. What I understand that they have different levels in the organization (makes sense) and each level is answering the same questions and achieving the same goals (makes sense also).

That is why I think that CPM is working for the big organizations and not the medium and small ones. It started in big organizations which already had in house (built in) structured approach of management. When the guys went to the market and opened it to the public, they did not take that into consideration. The mathematicians sold their black box on the market. It drew the activities, sequence, relationships, and calculated the CPM. No management.

Therefore, in order for CPM (seed) to work effectively, it needs the fertile grounds of management.

And since we (humans) already have evolved a little bit more in the Decision Sciences, it is safe to say that

CPM= Cost + Time savings = Mathematics + Management + Decision Making.

Looking forward to your valuable discussion.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi Everyone,

It seems that we are getting somewhere, but not in Construction yet.

"
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Collaborating with Microsoft and extending the partnership will give NICE customers the added benefits of its real-time, cross-channel interaction analytics. Eventually, this will impact customer interactions as they occur and deliver insights to improve organization’s business performance.

In a recent press release discussing the new agreement, Yancey Smith, director of Communications Server Product Management at Microsoft, said that Communications Server ‘14’ can change every communication into a more collaborative, engaging and accessible interaction.

Acting as an integrated suite of targeted business solutions and applications, NICE SmartCenter allows businesses to optimize their Customer Dynamics. This is made possible by capturing the intent of both customer and business, analyzing the intent to reveal insights and using these insights to drive actions that have a real-time impact on business performance.

If organizations are able to take care of the complex interactions with customers they can easily deliver value across a variety of business imperatives.

Understanding interaction means they will be able to accomplish a range of tasks such as ensuring compliance, mitigating risk, streamlining operational performance, differentiating the customer experience and expanding value beyond the contact center into the entire firm
"

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
User offline. Last seen 24 weeks 6 days ago. Offline
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Posts: 1664
Gentlemen,

Let me present to you the "Lebombo Bone 2010" its a business card for $29.99/mo "user friendly" with the information to "save time" and select the "cost" that the Owner wants. Not bad idea. Owner (Serious professionals :) expensive toys) is served if the concept is achieved.

"
Virtual Business Cards?!!! Our favorite Apple Toys will be Sporting this Brand- Must Read
HOT OFF THE PRESS! Hubze is getting the attention of some very large players. Our favorite APPLE toys will be sporting the Hubze brand. The Virtual Business Card concept is launching in April! Hubze is predicted to move mountains in for both off-line and on-line businesses in 2010.

No, Hubze is not trying to compete with Google, FaceBook, or Twitter. They are actually working with these power houses to simplify the branding process through social media.Their platform is so simple, so easy to navigate that experts are calling Hubze "the BIG ONE" that will be embraced by the masses.

What is Hubze (Hub-zee)?
- The ALWAYS FREE Hubze Cards are as Hot as an Ipod! A virtual business card that’s always live, easy to use and FRESH. That’s the million dollar word... "FRESH".... Search engines love fresh content.

What other FREE features will Hubze offer?
One click platform that pings all your favorite social sites.
- Read and respond to your feeds within this clean platform.
- Build your connections & brand with the tracker feature on your Hubze card.
- Put yourself on the map (even above Google maps!)- Hubze Cards are live and perfect for speakers that move from location to location.
- Locate dining & shops in your area that are using Hubze Cards.

Hubze for the SERIOUS Professional/ ONLY $29.97 per mo.:
- Landing Page for YOUR business (your mini website to market YOUR products)
- Auto Responder to promote YOUR business
- Optimized Blogging all about YOU and YOUR business
- Advertising Benefits
- Affliate Compensation- generous compensation for referring other businesses
- & lots of Apple toys sporting the HUbze logo as YOUR rewards!

http://hubze.com/signup/?referredBy=YourBallyhoo
"

Just get the idea, no need to sign up.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Posts: 1664
Dear Scarllet,

Look at nature for finding new solutions not at yourself.

Natural systems are dynamic efficient. They change the use of the material over a long period of time.

A small search at aminal homes:
Animal homes vary from dens, burrows, hollow logs, galls on plants and trees, and numerous types of nests. Look for signs of animal homes by listening for animal sounds such as birds singing , the rustling of animal movement, and the sounding of alarms. Observe tracks and trails found in mud, sand, or snow. Notice feeding signs such as chew marks on plants, animal remains, and droppings or scat. Look for traces of feathers, fur, antlers, shells, and skins. By learning about the habits and characteristics of animals, you will be able to locate and identify many of their homes.

Coming to think of it, maybe that is why Vladimir used the name Spider:


Animal Homes http://www.uen.org/utahlink/activities/view_activity.cgi?activity_id=3804

There are over 32,000 types of spiders living on Earth. They live in almost every area from the hottest tropics to the cold continent of Antarctica. Spiders are easily identified by their 8 legs and their ability to spin a web.

Spiders eat insects that they catch in their web. They have fangs to bite the insect. Many spiders also have poisonous glands to help kill the insects, and some are even poisonous to humans.

Spiders have the ability to produce silk from an organ in their abdomen called the spinneret. The spider’s web has many purposes in addition to being a place to live.

Spiders use their web to trap insects for food. Once an insect is caught, they may also use their web to tie up their victim.

Spiders also lay a line of silk as they move around. They anchor the line to a surface, and use the line just like a mountain climber uses their safety rope.

Spiders initially started producing silk for reasons other than web-making. When spiders moved from the water to the land in the Early Devonian period, they started making silk to protect their bodies and their eggs. Spiders gradually started using silk for hunting purposes, first as guide lines and signal lines, then as ground or bush webs, and eventually as the aerial webs which are so famous today.
Spiders produce silken thread using several paired spinneret glands located at the tip of their abdomen. Each gland produces a thread for a special purpose – for example a trailed safety line, sticky silk for trapping prey or fine silk for wrapping it. Spiders use different gland types to produce different silks, and some spiders are capable of producing up to 8 different silks during their lifetime.
Most spiders have three pairs of spinnerets, each having its own function – there are also spiders with just one pair and others with as many as four pairs.
Webs allow a spider to catch prey without having to expend energy by running it down. Thus it is an efficient method of gathering food. However, constructing the web is in itself an energetically costly process due to the large amount of protein required, in the form of silk. In addition, after a time the silk will lose its stickiness and thus become inefficient at capturing prey. It is not uncommon for spiders to eat their own web daily to recoup some of the energy used in spinning. The silk proteins are thus recycled.
The tensile strength of spider silk is greater than the same weight of steel and has much greater elasticity. Its microstructure is under investigation for potential applications in industry, including bullet-proof vests and artificial tendons. Researchers have used genetically modified mammals to produce the proteins needed to make this material
www.earthlife.net/chelicerata/web-evolve.html

Unfortunately in human society the word primitive is often used as an insult and means something that is no good, while advanced means good, in evolution there is no good or bad except from a personal point of view, all of life is good. In fact many people would prefer a ’primitive’ spider like a Tarantula to a more advanced spider like a Black Widow. You will also occasionally hear or read the terms ’highly evolved’ and ’more evolved’ these really refer to the number of observed evolutionary steps that can be discerned in the creatures evolutionary history. Again being highly evolved is not necessarily good, many of humanity’s most obnoxious parasites are more ’highly evolved’ in terms of evolutionary steps, than humanity itself.
Evolution is not finished, and it certainly didn’t stop for spiders at the orb-web design. Many spiders show modifications of this basic form, many of which are simplifications. The New Guinea spider Pasilobus ssp. builds a simple triangular web consisting of only three radii and four sticky cross bars. This works because if an insect flying past brushes against one of these strands it breaks off from the outer radius and hangs down. In doing so the free end swings around and sticks to the insect which is then reeled in from the still attached end by the spider.
There are also fascinating examples like Dinopis guatemalensis the Net Casting Spider which makes a net of silk web and then hangs upside down waiting for something to pass so that it can drop its net on to it. Or the Bolas Spiders like the American Mastophora ssp. which emit a pheromone that mimics the sex attractant used by certain moths of the genus Spodoptera (Army Worms). Males that are attracted to the false pheromone are then caught by the spider using a swinging a stand of silk with a sticky blob on the end, the moth gets caught in this, the original bolas, and then the spider hauls it in.
The real master craftsmen of the spider world are the orb-web spinners. Yet even within this group we can distinguish evolutionary paths. Spiders that build orb-webs, like other spiders, still have to deal with the insects that get caught in it. This can be tricky as insects are often quick to escape, for instance flies caught in a web spun by Araneus sericatus escape in 5 seconds (on average) if left to their own devices. Also the insect which is caught in the web may be large and aggressive, grasshoppers and crickets can kick quite hard and spiders do get hurt by them, not to mention bees and wasps.

The moral of the story is that natural systems (we being one of them) tailor their systems according to the intended use. CPM can have many levels. For $5M and under projects, you need very simple tools. For mega projects with thousands of Contractors, you need the structured and disciplined approach

Since we part of the natural system and we are evolving on a daily basis, I would suggest that you custom tailer the tool according to the need. And if the tool is not providing you with time and cost saving, then it is time to find a more SUITABLE tool to use.

With kind regards,

Samer
Scarllet Pimpernel
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In conclusion and to close the thread,

The history of scheduling is as old as man itself because of man’s ability to survive in whatever environment he is in.

What we are doing today is only using the latest tools and inventions to make life more efficient and prodcutive in scheduling.

Eventually, as an old sage said: "when i was a boy, i think like a boy, and in growing in manhood, i thiink as a man, what you learn before may come to an end ...

So relevance to the discussion at hand, the Primavera and Spider project management sofware we are using is the tools for today and maybe years to come, but, eventually, another sophisticated planning software will become the new kid in town.

Thank you,
Scarlett
Scarllet Pimpernel
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The women in the early time already know that every 28 day cycle, something will come out from their body.

And it is still true today and it will be true tomorrow.

So the trend remains the same, that is why the women know how to prepare/plan for this event to happen since it was taught by their mother and their mother’s mother.

So the forecast is not exciting as to what will happen next.

And why are we talking about women body when we are men.

Men also know how to plan what was handed down from their peers. They also know how to use any part of man’s body to achieve their goals: goals for today and tomorrow.

But man has two head, one below and one above, so man is superior in planning using the experience, history, then, man can make forecast for today and tomorrow to come.

This is natural because man is the breadwinner.

Thank you,
Scarlett
Anoon Iimos
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Hi Samer,

I guess your "lembombo bone" is an indication that in the early time, women really invented scheduling and the rythm method, and maybe some kind of withdrawal, but as you know, sometimes it misses (same as the latest scheduling tools).

Thanks that the condom was invented later, humanity evolve!

Best regards

Samer Zawaydeh
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Posts: 1664
Dear Vladimir,

If the solution is easy, we would have found it a long time ago.

That is why we have to think of a simpler concept and tool to save time and cost.

With kind regards,

Samer
Hi Samer,
trends are easy to understand.
Examples:
Total Cost forecast is increasing two months in a row and now is ________________,
Probability to meet target date is 46% at the moment and the trend of last 5 weeks is 32%, 35%. 37%, 42%, 46% - so we shall be happy.

It is not necessary to be an expert for understanding trends.
It is simple and extremely useful.
Best Regards,
Vladimir
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Scarllet,

It is very important that you understand history because you learn from it. The future on the other hand is unknow, the best this are Trends.

What we are discussing here is good to know becasue you are using these tools. Think about CPM like the infrastructure that you are using; roads, IT networks, etc. How hard for you would it be for you to build a project without roads and electricity. Hard.

The same thing applies to the Black Boxes. If you do not know the limitations and what they can do, you might not get where you want, or you might not be able to build what you want!

The issue is CPM was invented to reduce time and cost, and now it is a complicated tool that is not meeting these goals.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

I agree with you. My guess is that PP is the Eureka of Scheduling.

WIKI Definition: Scheduling is the process of deciding how to commit resources between a variety of possible tasks. Time can be specified (scheduling a flight to leave at 8:00) or floating as part of a sequence of events

AACE Definition: PLANNING –
(1) The determination of a project’s objectives with identification of the activities to be performed, methods and resources (cost, hours, time, materials, etc.) to be used for accomplishing the tasks, assessment of both value and risks, assignment of responsibility and accountability, and establishment of an integrated plan to achieve completion as required.
(2) In planning and scheduling, the identification of the project objectives and the ordered activity
necessary to complete the project (the thinking part) and not to be confused with scheduling; the process by which the duration of the project task is applied to the plan. It involves answering the questions: 1) What must be done in the future to reach the project objective?; 2) How it will be done?; 3) Who will do it?; and 4) When it will be done?

AACE Definition SCHEDULE –
(1) A description of when each activity in a project can be accomplished and must be finished so as to be completed timely. The simplest of schedules depict in bar chart format the start and finish of activities of a given duration. More complex schedules, general in CPM format, include schedule logic and show the critical path and floats associated with each activity.
(2) A time sequence of activities and events that represent an operating timetable. The schedule specifies the relative beginning and ending times of activities and the occurrence times of events. A schedule may be presented on a calendar framework or on an elapsed time scale


WIKI: The word "mathematics" itself derives from the ancient Greek μάθημα (mathema), meaning "subject of instruction".

WIKI: Prehistoric mathematics

The origins of mathematical thought lie in the concepts of number, magnitude, and form. Modern studies of animal cognition have shown that these concepts are not unique to humans. Such concepts would have been part of everyday life in hunter-gatherer societies. That the concept of number evolved gradually over time is evident in that some languages today preserve the distinction between "one", "two", and "many", but not of numbers larger than two.
The oldest known mathematical object is the Lebombo bone, discovered in the Lebombo mountains of Swaziland and dated to approximately 35,000 BC. It consists of 29 distinct notches deliberately cut into a baboon’s fibula. There is evidence that women used counting to keep track of their menstrual cycles; 28 to 30 scratches on bone or stone, followed by a distinctive marker. Also prehistoric artifacts discovered in Africa and France, dated between 35,000 and 20,000 years old, suggest early attempts to quantify time.

I want you read clearly what the archiologist are saying: "early attempts to quantify time".

Now I can’t say for certain what they did with the bone once the Schedule did not work. But since it is made by the Owner, no one to blame but themselves.

With kind regards,

Samer

Scarllet Pimpernel
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This thread is about history,

What has been,

But,

What has been may not nescessarily be relevant today or tomorrow

What we know is US of A was a former colony of UK, and as the saying goes: the sun never set in the british empire.

But, again,

Nobody believe it anymore.

It is now the time for US of A to be the supreme,

And we have to be happy for that, in my lifetime,

It gave us Primavera, Microsoft Project to name a few

And of course, we have also the Russian, they gave us Spider that is one project management software for the future.

Happen next, I do not know.

Thank you,
Scarlett
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

Here middle management can make decisions about the schedule; here the schedule serves the decision maker, not sure about the practice in other countries. We empower our employees as needed at the appropriate level.

Here the means and methods are by the Contractor not by the Owner, the schedule is the responsibility of the Contractor unless working under a non common contract type, as for example cost plus when it makes sense for the Owner to keep tight control of the schedule or when the conditions are such it is foreseen that the Owner will interfere with the progress of the job or when working under a Construction Management type of contract which is rarely justified.

Neither CMs nor PMs are at the kindergarten level, here these are the decision makers, these are well trained professionals that at times have problems communicating the Owners the complicated issues as there is a limit as how low they can go. Is not those Owners are morons, on the contrary not by being morons they got the money; just their area of specialization is other. To pretend serious and complicated scheduling is to be done by a teenager and his iPod does not make any sense; we got to stop thinking in this way and concentrate in the education of our managers. We are not at the Jetsons era, not yet.

As of today I have not found a better place to learn about scheduling than at PP, here it is about the real thing, is where theory and practice merges.

Mike,

The Lebombo Bone was a birth control device based on the woman’s menstrual cycle, is obvious.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Mike,

The "Lebombo Bone" is very important because the of the concept. It is a tool that is made by the OWNER to schedule. He/she can carry it, use it, modify it at anytime and anywhere.

I sound like a the next commercial for ORACLE on IPOD.

With kind regards,

Samer

PS. Rafael, I have to modidy my earlier statement about Contractual Documents, we can use them a Toilet Paper (recycled or not) only after the elapse of the period of time allowed by Law in the Country where the Project was executed to claim for any "right" either party might find and prove after the closure of the project.
Mike Testro
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Hi Samer

I am not convinced with this Lebombo Bone calculating device.

It is after all just a bone with 29 notches in it.

What is the significance of the number 29 when the lunar cycle is 28 days?

It is possible that some bored caveman just cut a few notches to while away the time.

Unless of course he was discussing the sequence of prime numbers with the other primates.

Best regards

Mike Testro
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

Owners investing in projects are much smart than me at least :) The want to save money by reducing time and cost.

Seems to me Vladimir that what you are saying is that correct CPM is not a tool that is serving the Decision Makers directly. They need a team of smart experts to explain the Trends.

(Owners/CM/PMs) obviously are at the kindergarden level of experties in operating CPM black boxes as Rafael pointed out.

I am still in favor of "Lebombo bone" from 35,000B.C. for the simple reason that the owner of the schedule made use of the tool.

With kind regards,

Samer
Sorry guys, I missed an interesting discussion.
Now I just want to add that we consider trend reports as most useful and easy to understand.
The best one - trends of probabilities to meet project targets.
If the probabilities increase everything is fine, if they go down then corrective actions shall be considered.
They are not easy to calculate but they are easy to understand. And they depend not only on what is happening inside the project but also on project environment.
But in any case look at trends for management decisions.
Best Regards,
Vladimir
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

If the construction operations are complex the scheduling will be complex, it cannot be done by kindergarten kids.

About the reporting I agree, many technocrats do not know how to communicate, the problem is on management reporting not on the scheduling tool. Stake holders are not technocrats but provided with good communication reports they will get it, is just their area of specialization is other. They can swallow an S Curve, a summary bar chart and a pie diagram, just do not trow them a 100 pages report. On fridays they want to get out of the meeting and go to the Golf Court.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafeal,

Here is a published article from 2005:
"
2005 AACE International Transactions
PS.08
Transparent CPM
Mr. Mark C. Sanders, PE CCE

If the direct output of a project schedule is too confusing for the stakeholders to understand, or if it takes too long to prepare informative output, then the schedule fails to communicate the health of the project in a timely manner. With the advancements that have been made during the last two decades in both CPM scheduling software and the computer hardware that runs these
applications, it is difficult to understand why the industry has not developed "enhanced" scheduling systems that can clearly, accurately, and quickly present the schedule data and critical paths to the stakeholders
"

With kind regards,

Samer
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

“Construction operations are in reality, much more complex”

Yes this is correct, that is why we need more complex tools, and original CPM is too simple.

The fact that scheduling is at times done by inexperienced and incapable people are also true statements. But this is changing, now all Civil Engineering curricula includes some formal training in scheduling, all engineers I know, especially the young are versed on the use of CPM software.

Garbage-in garbage out is mostly due to the fact that the tool should be used by those who manage not by people foreign to the job. For the above reason this is changing not only here but in Russia as per Vladimir comments.

I would blame for the dark years Primavera, a company that bought good products to make a profit but never improved on them. They established themselves as the standard and our institutions followed their backward thinking doctrine of just to improve on the cosmetic side, they put on hold decades of improvements.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

The article continue to say the truth, here is some more:
"
Insufficient Attention to the Integrity of Logic
Networks. The logic network is the heart of the
CPM method, but for various reasons it is often
relegated to a position of minor importance.
Formulation of good technique and rules to enable
training in network drawing has not occurred to a
sufficient extent. Therefore, schedulers who
could be described as good network analysts are
at a premium in the industry today. Consequently,
the phrase invented for computers "garbage in;
garbage out," is heard frequently in connection
with CPM schedules.
Most problems with networks stem from the fact
that, although they are often interpreted as
absolute mathematical models, engineering,
procurement, and construction operations are in
reality, much more complex than the network’s
modeling,can handle with fidelity. The accurate
quantification of activities, deciding when one
ends and the next begins, and above all,
specification of the level of detail, are
constant problems in the preparation of networks.
"

Remember this is a 26 years old published article. Which means that it was reviewed by a panel of 3 at least and approved by them for publication.

With kind regards,

Samer
Rafael Davila
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The article is wrong.

In any case CPM scheduling has been underdeveloped as a user-oriented tool and also as a science as both go hand by hand.

Functionalities that let you see the logic have been underdeveloped for long until now. These will turbo charge the status of CPM to the extent to make it manageable.

Open your eyes.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

I moved up in time, but it still looks confusing to others as well. And it is published.

I am reading what others wanted to accomplish when they started the CPM and what we have now. That is why I am reading the 50’s and 60’s.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

Read below what the introduction of published article in 1984 in AACE is saying:

"
1984 AACE Transactions
The CPM Technique in Construction: A critique, By Derek Mason

INTRODUCTION
The Critical Path Method (CPM) has now been in
use for a quarter of a century. As a technology,
it is young compared to, say, the science of pressure
vessel design, but its youth can no longer
be allowed to serve as an excuse for substandard
application. If the development of computers is
used as a comparison, the progress of CPM and
project scheduling looks somewhat anemic. So it
behooves us to take a critical look at the status
of the tool. Because of CPM’s omnipresence in
the profession, the profession itself should also
be critically examined.
CPM scheduling has been overdeveloped as a
science and underdeveloped ’as a user-oriented
tool. It has all too often been forgotten that
schedules are not produced for schedulers, but
for managers. It is essential that service to
the user be given high operational priority.
"
With kind regards,

Samer
PS. Not sure what’s inside the black boxes. I didn’t open one for CPM before, sorry Rafael.
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

CRITICAL PATH SCHEDULING - PHILOSOPHY AND EXPERIENCE
By Robert B. Vogeler, Meissner Engineers, Inc.
300 West Washington, Chicago 6, Illinois
Presentad At: The 6th Annual Convention
American Association of, Cost Engineers, June $7, 1962
Chicago, IllinOiS

THIS IS A 1962 PAPER ALMOST STILL IN THE ENIAC COMPUTER ERA.

Better get a couple of Cray machines.

http://www.deskeng.com/articles/aaathm.htm

Best regards,
Rafael
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

For your knowledge original PERT computations were in error. Today no serious software uses their original mathematical assumptions and either use Monte Carlo or other modern mathematical methods to get a better estimate of the probability distribution. Because Monte Carlo is quite time consuming I prefer the other methods, and Monte Carlo as a tool to validate the other methods.

http://www.netmba.com/operations/project/pert/

PERT Error

See also

http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_memoranda/2008/RM3408.pdf

One of the paragraphs in the article you are referring reads as follows:

-"PERT and CPM scheduling techniques have many similarities. For example, each shows the relationships among activities and events, both include the project’s critical path, and the structure of each allows analysis of the tasks to be done, resources assigned to do them, and the time associated with each task. Both techniques use nodes to represent events (beginning and end of activities) and lines to represent the activities."

This really confused me as today many call PERT Diagram the Activity on Node representation and not the Activity on Arrow representation. This is kind of new to me, perhaps many software developers are wrongly using the PERT name or the article is wrong.

Maybe you can call PERT Distribution to their estimate of a Beta Distribution; this makes sense to me, but no more.

http://www.vosesoftware.com/ModelRiskHelp/index.htm#Distributions/Contin...

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

You are going to love this:

"
CRITICAL PATH SCHEDULING - PHILOSOPHY AND EXPERIENCE
By Robert B. Vogeler, Meissner Engineers, Inc.
300 West Washington, Chicago 6, Illinois
Presentad At: The 6th Annual Convention
American Association of, Cost Engineers, June $7, 1962
Chicago, IllinOiS

Conclusions
I have not stressed the use of digital computers as a means of implementing Critical Path Scheduling. My reasoning in doing this is to stress the concept of a management science technique applied to construction, not a computer application. The concept of Critical Path
Scheduling has no direct relationship to computers and is only the sophistication of planning and scheduling (except where the number of activities is extensive, then computer use is required because of time and complexity). Therefore, Critical Path Scheduling should be examined
from its true perspective - a defined planning technique developed in our evolution of management science.
"

CPM true benefits (Saving time and cost) got lost during the development of "user friendly" sofisticated tools for trained experts.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael and Vladimi,

I think that you will like reading this, it is a good reference:

NASA Scheduling Management Handbook
This handbook provides schedule management guidance for NASA Headquarters, NASA

http://spacese.spacegrant.org/uploads/Schedule/NASA_SMH_DRAF...

They have a very structured approach. Having the best people in the world automatically make everything easy. Not quite the same at Construction Sites.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

The complete title of the paper is:

Scheduling 101: A "Behind-the-Scenes" Look at Basic Schedule Calculations
James L. Jenkins
Purdue University
West Lafayette, Indiana
Scott W. Kramer Joseph J. Orczyk
Auburn University Purdue University
Auburn, Alabama West Lafayette, Indiana

www.pmicos.org/topics/ aug2006tom.pdf

The link works. I tried it again now. Or you can google the paper.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Posts: 1664
Hi,

This is interesting topic found in a guide: Common Time Robbers. This is actually written down in a guide. These guys know exactly what is wrong, but they have the discipline to make it work. Pretty much like what Vladimir is doing. The rest are not so lucky.

Scheduling Guide for Program Managers
www.dau.mil/pubs/gdbks/schedulinguide.pdf

APPENDIX B
Common Time Robbers1

• Procrastination
• Setting up appointments
• Too many meetings
• Monitoring delegated work
• Unclear roles/job descriptions
• Unnecessary crisis intervention
• Need to get involved in details to get job done
• Not enough proven or trustworthy managers
• Vague goals and objectives
• Too many people involved in minor decision making
• Lack of technical knowledge
• Lack of authorization to make judgment decisions
• Unreasonable time constraints
• Lack of commitment from higher authorities
• Too much travel
• Lack of adequate project management tools
• Poor functional communications/ writing skills
• Inability to relate to peers in a personal way
• Rush into decisions/beat the deadline
• Lack of reward (“a pat on the back can do wonders”)
• Expecting too much from one’s staff and oneself
• Going from crisis to crisis
• Conflicting directives
• Fire drills
• Lack of privacy
• Lack of challenge in job duties
• Bureaucratic roadblocks (“ego”)
• Empire-building line managers
• Too much work for one person to handle effectively
• Excessive paperwork
• Lack of clerical/administrative support
• Workload growing faster than capacity 78
• Dealing with unreliable subcontractors
• Personnel not willing to take risks
• Demand for short-term results
• Lack of long-range planning
• Being overdirected
• Overreacting management
• Poor lead time on projects
• Documentation (reports/red tape)
• Large number of projects
• Inadequate or inappropriate requirements
• Desire for perfection
• Lack of dedication by technical experts
• Lack of project organization
• Constant pressure
• Constant interruptions
• Project budget problems
• Shifting of functional personnel
• Lack of qualified manpower

With kind regards,

Samer
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

Is this a continuation of the paper I referred under my posting #19 under this thread, is it Part 2?

“On the issue on continuous/discontinuous (non-split/split activities) the following article can serve as a start.”

http://www.pmicos.org/topics/aug2006tom.pdf

I could not get it following your link by pasting it.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Hi all,

I found this article that describes the status of Scheduling in the Introduction and the Conclusion sections.

www.pmicos.org/topics/ aug2006tom.pdf
Scheduling 101: A "Behind-the-Scenes" Look at Basic Schedule ..

More of the same, but the good thing it is a published article by PMI college of Scheduling. Imagine that... they agree.

With kind regards,

Samer
P.S. You can only make toilet papers out of Contract Documents only after the elapse of 10 years period Rafael.
Safak Vural
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Dear Vladimir,

Thank you for your clear reply.

Regards,

SV

P.S. I agree that I need to experience other methods to understand the difference.
Rafael Davila
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Vladimir and Safak,

My experience with prioritization with other software was that it was bypassed very frequently contrary to what happens in Spider Project, some might be skeptical about prioritization because of their prior experience. Phase Prioritization keep order on the house. I also would like to add that Spider have two levels of prioritization one at the Phase Level and another at the Activity Level, that in Spider you can have unlimited WBS and you can define a specific one for your phase prioritization while displaying the schedule on another WBS. Theoretically this can provide you with unlimited combinations as you can define unlimited WBS each with a single phase per activity, and then group the different phases using phase levels, kind of too much but the statistic is there for those who go overboard.

Resource leveling within Spider Project is a different experience, don’t judge it by your prior experiences with other software.

Best regards,
Rafael
Dear Safak,

At Caspian Pipeline Construction project we worked with the General Contractor and more precisely with the management company Starstroy specially created for CPC management.
We were involved in creating two schedules – one for the mobilization and another one – for construction.
Construction schedule was very detailed and this model was used for determining the technologies that will be used (four spreads, where the work will start, in what direction the construction will go at each part of the pipeline, etc.) and what quantities of machines and people are necessary to use to be on time.

The schedule that was created by the joint team of our consultants and our client was approved by the project management company that represented the Owner (Fleur) and then was used for tenders and contracting. Tender participants were required to agree with the schedule or to make necessary adjustments (there were none) and to demonstrate that they have sufficient amounts of necessary mechanisms and workforce (including certified welders).
The schedule had near 9000 activities with more than 1000 resource types.
The schedule was submitted to the management company and we were not involved in the following construction management.

Blue Stream schedule was developed for Gazprom with the similar purpose – to determine the durations and resources necessary for timely construction for future contracting.

We were and are involved in other pipeline construction projects and not only at the planning phase as in these examples but also at the execution stage. These two projects are not typical for our activities.

I do not believe in manual leveling. When there are thousands resource types it is impossible. Playing what if shall be manual because only people know if it is possible to add some resources to some crews. But if the crews are known the software shall provide the results of your what if evaluations.
If you created the manual schedule then you will need to do manual scheduling again when the information will change and it is changing each time when you enter actual. It is impossible. If you start to use automatic leveling then your initial manual schedule will not work and the baseline order of work may be rejected.
In Spider Project we have special function (Previous version support) that can help to keep the order of work that you prefer but I did not see this functionality in any other software. I think that it is necessary to rely on automatic leveling that takes into account user defined priorities but tries to minimize overall project duration. Playing with priorities shall be manual, not the leveling itself. In large projects it is very time consuming.

On the slide 37 of this presentation:
http://www.spiderproject.ru/library/eng/Spider%20Project%20Presentation.ppt
you may find the Linear Diagram (Time-Location Chart) of Caspian Pipeline Construction Project. I don’t remember special publications on this topic.

Best Regards,
Vladimir
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

If you do not use the schedule as a dynamic tool, even if “drawn” by an “expert” scheduler it is just toilet tissue paper. The schedule is dynamic; therefore the management team must be able to use it on demand.

The action scheduler will use the tool to determine course of action using “what-if” scenarios. The CPM will not be a substitute to the skills of the manager, this is an erroneous belief. The CPM will assist the team to analyze different scenarios, if the model is good and maintained as a dynamic thing to represent changed conditions it will provide good assistance.

Most probably the scheduler will look at the two infamous indicators of what is driving the schedule at the moment of the analysis; these are total float and free float, named in order of relevance, the first with very dominant priority. If your software provides you with true float after resource leveling you are a step ahead, if you know all driving links even better, beware that resource dependencies usually are kind of concurrent and the delay of only one can release all others.

Of course other scenarios such as changing work logic or changing the means and methods should be considered.

What-if is the key, if not performed frequently you are not managing the schedule with the assistance of the CPM, you are forcing the CPM to follow you, you are using it just as a record keeping tool. What-if is not easy because every time you change the scenario the Critical Path, the driving relationships and demand of resources vary.

Because I am an action scheduler when our schedules start to fall behind we do a lot of what-if analysis and this way we keep the jobs on course. Because is not easy and can be time consuming is why I am so concerned about the understanding of what is driving my schedule. At any given time I am concerned about all activities that cannot be delayed to avoid delaying total project duration and also to avoid delaying some non critical but immediate successors, these are non critical drivers. Any tool that assists us to understand the logic is welcomed.

I would like to add that if when resources loading you get into too much granularity this will make you lose perspective as the resource dependencies will exponentially increase. Construction jobs are managed at the crew level; use this as your unit or at least keep them in teams.

Best regards,
Rafael
Safak Vural
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Dear Vladimir,

I have question out of topic:

For "Caspian Pipeline Construction" and "Blue Stream" Pipeline" projects, did you act as an advisory subcontractor to "GASPROM"?

If so; what are the ideas or comments on the projects by "General Electric, Bechtel, Royal Dutch Shell, BP, SOCAR, TPAO,...." (who shall be involved?) through your looking glass for the project?

I can understand that you are responsible about confidentiality to your customers but can you could provide us some demonstrations or papers about this kind of projects?

For the discussion: I prefer and trying to implement; manual resource levelling for the baselines(I think achievable and important) and using software resource levelling for periodical updates and forecasts.

Regards,

Safak VURAL
Dear Samer,

CPM is the method of the project scheduling that ignores resource, supply and financial restrictions.
I think that you mean proper project scheduling that takes into account all existing constraints.
And your phrase about perfect management process I understand as the proposal to discuss the benefits of proper projectt management that includes project planning and scheduling.

When I write about creating project schedule model I mean the model that will answer any what if question. It means that managers can estimate future results of potential actions before making the decision.

Good Project resource constrained schedule helps to optimize the workforce and machines, to minimize the waste of the working time and project duration, to optimize the supply schedule.

Risk management is another source of potential benefits.

And since nothing goes as planned an ability to reschedule the project and reassign resources optimally in the real time is also a large benefit.

If you create shorter schedules, use less resources to achieve the same goals, always have all required information for communications and decision making, have sufficient contingency reserves for risk events that were calculated and optimized (not too small. not too large), etc. you will save a lot of money and a lot of time.

But I repeat that if somebody somewhere drawed CPM schedule that is not used for the real management and decision making then it is a waste of time.

Best Regards,
Vladimir
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

Theoretically, let us assume the managment process is perfected. Lets assume that 50% of the projects worldwide are run effectively and efficiently to the best of everyones knowledge (I would like to know your estimate). We come back to the original question:

How is the CPM helping the decision makers in the time and cost issues? Which is the original goal of a CPM.

I know that if you are on the project with your CPM tool, things are likely to be under control and it will benefit the project. But that is an "ad hoc" solution.

With kind regards,

Samer
Dear Samer,
if project management does not use created schedules then they are useless.
Construction manager shall be involved in the schedule development and will require from supervisors to follow the planned order of activities execution. The schedule defines how many people shall work at any site area at any type of job. Out of sequence execution means penalties to supervisor.
Crews get their work plans directly from the scheduling software and these plan shall include planned physical amounts of work to be done.
Reports go to the scheduling program and the schedule is recalculated. The work plans for the next shift (day) are published.
It is usual to have computer (notebook) on site. And it is usual to have phones on site. So it is not hard to connect to the Central office, to submit the reports and to get the revised plan if you don’t want to train supervisors.
Another option that we use here on some projects - the supervisor comes to work 20-30 minutes earlier, switch on the computer, updates the schedule and prints work plans for construction crews.
At the end of the shift crew leaders fill (on paper) the fields against each planned activity with actual quantities that were done by their crews. These reports are submitted to the supervisor who may accept or rejext them but his acceptance means quantities confirmation.
The supervisor enters actual data in the notebook and send to the office or in the scheduling program creating new updated project version.
Information from the construction site, from supplies department, from financial department is merged in the PMO.
Reports to the owner are made by PMO and we suggest to show project trends, the best - success probability trends if risk simulation was approved. 100 pages report will not be read.

In any case - if the schedule lives by itself without guiding production force it is useless.
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

The CPM was created at a Business oriented company to serve a certain need. It was later determined that this tool did not work by the same company, and the founders had to leave and open their own practices. It was further devleped at research institutes and huge organizations.

It is very obvious that the origin of CPM did not start with the end customer in mind. It is a systematic approach managed by specialist. What we have in the market are intelligent tools that needs "Certified" people to run it.

What I am talking about is something different. Construction Projects are initiated by Owners, Managed by Project/ Construction Managers and executed by supervisors. These three categories do not have tools to reduce the project time and cost within their immediate reach except a calculator and to the extent that any of them is computer literate.

What are the avilable solutions to the time and cost decision making saving beside using their experience: Owners drink and smoke to relax their nervous systems, PM/CM look at the skies to receive wireless clues and supervisors have calculator and drawings in their hands running around to complete the job as efficiently as possible and if the PM/CM is smart, then it will effective as well.

What do you expect of an Owner/PM/CM if you give him a monthly report of 100 Page CPM with pictures and cummulative graphs, etc. How do you expect them to take the right time and cost savings. Especially since every single day at site labor cost, is more expensive than the tool.

The more important question is that how do you expect people who are hired on a monthly basis by the Owner to provide him with solutions to complete the job faster. It is not possible logically because it is not covered contractually in most cases, and it means that your are asking people to reduce their income.

If you can explain to me logically how your average Owner who does not know anything about CPM can save time and cost by using the available CPM tools in the market, I would very much appreciate that. They are the entity most interested in time and cost, and they can’t use the tool. And I am very confident that they know everything about money and interests.

The current tools, to my knowledge, are managed by specialist, and are good for progress monitoring. You can have a indication about what MIGHT be happening at site depending on how good the model it.

We are talking about a different tool. That is why the oldest schedule in history marked on a bone, can be a good start. If it was easy to be understood by a 35,000BC person, any living person now can use it.

With kind regards,

Samer
We don’t advise our customers to use external services.
If construction managers did not take part in the schedule development the schedule is good for wall paper.
The contractor schedule shall advise site managers what works shall be done in the next shift, procurement managers shall have the information when and what amount of materials will be required, etc.
Contractor project schedule shall supply project participants with the information that is required for his/her tasks. It shall be updated frequently and deal with physical work volumes, real costs, real resources.
It shall be created inside the organization and shall be based on the internal corporate norms and technologies.
It is necessary to train contractor managers because schedule development lasts until the project finish.

The practice that you described (hiring external scheduler) is not common in the countries where we work. And the task of PM System implementation is to teach our customers to manage their projects without external help.

Best Regards,
Vladimir
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

This is very interesting information. I think that if you can make a presentation and put it on spider website, it would be useful for many.

The issue of training a staff from zero, building a database and make them productive seems ideal. But I will take your word. It can happen, but that is not usually the case.

What you are describing is a project management solution with providing services to the Contractor. Chances are that you Schedulers are building the Model for the Contractors. That is why it is working. In most cases, the Contractor buys the software, and hires a scheduler to do the job.

It seems to me that the solution is in running the black box correctly. We are talking about creating an Interface between the site and the black boxes. This consist of prefessional service companies that can run the software and understand construction at the same time. This is a partial solution because the information at site changes by the minute. And when you have 50 people working 1 or 2 shifts, things really change daily. In addition, the majority of the users will not allow a 3rd party to have any part of their data!

With kind regards,

Samer
Dear Samer,
Spider Project is used by the companies that manage $100000 projects (flats repairs and similar projects) and companies that manage $30bln programs like preparation of Olympic Games (arenas, hotels, railroads, sea ports. airport, utilities, power plant, etc.). I don’t agree that there is some mimimal budget when it is useful. My experience shows that it is always useful.

This company that repairs flats is even more happy because they saw immediate benefits having full information on required materials, resource schedule, cost forecasts, etc.
And the benefits are much larger than 2% of the project budget. They paid $10000 for the software, training and consulting and returned their money immediately - their customers were happy to pay more money for fast, reliable and clean project management when they know the exact days when the work will be done and can track the progress. They also saved money buying necessary materials in necessary quantities at required time.

Our other client built the high-rise building using just in time technology. They called to our office and informed us that the construction was finished at the exact day that was planned one year earlier and we congratulated them. This building was built in the city center and without the precise resource scheduling they may have a lot of problems.

This setup job is necessary, takes time and requires dedicated team. But this job is needed in any case - there is a need in the corporate standards and norms if the company wants to manage its resources and costs. I cannot imagine corporate project management system without corporate standards for production rates, cost and material estimates, etc.
But if these standards are established project scheduling became easy and reliable.
We spent more than 3 months creating norms and resource databases, typical fragments and WBS templates for Caspian Pipeline Construction Project.
After this was done it took three days to create the detailed schedule model, to make all necessary what if calculations, to determine what resources are needed at any point in time, etc.
Our analysis showed that without this model we would be late at the rice fields and the project could be at least half of the year late.
Our next project was Blue Stream pipeline and everything was ready in two weeks because we already had necessary databases and fragments.

And I want to add that I am mathematician but was and am involved in planning and management of many construction and other projects. Creating useful PM software it is necessary to have site experience. When we implement PM System and Spider Project in new company we manage pilot project together sharing with our customers our practical experience. And it includes not only software implementation but also project management procedures and decision making, staff motivation, communications, etc. The software is a part of the project management system and does not work by itself.

We estimate the benefits of proper planning and management in at least 10% of the project budget. And if PM system implementation will cost less then the company will get its money back on the first project. And usually it happens this way.

But I mean the implementation of the project management system and resource scheduling that is based on real data. Drawing schedules does not save much money.

Best Regards,
Vladimir
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

We are talking about the same thing from different angles. You are the mathematician and I am the site person.

I am sure that in order to complete the requirements in your 1st paragraph, you need a capable system administrator to do the job with a great setup. It would be interesting to find out how many sites on earth have these capacilities. My guess that you need a project between $15-50Million, to start thinking about this setup. Roughly speaking you will need to spend 1-2% of the project value to start speaking this language.

Now this is the important question. A Program is a normal requirement on the project, from your experience, paying the 2% are you getting your ROI or are you wasting money and getting in trouble because of bad models.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

I did not think that the guys in the 60’s messed up. They had 3000 projects running at the same time and they wanted to land on the moon. So I think that it is safe to say that if you want to build a project on earth for $5M or less, you do not need a progam. You need a calculator only. On the other hand, if you want to go outside the Earth, they you need computers for communication back and forth. I think that construction (like LEGO) is done manually up their as well.

On the other hand, if you have layers and layers of people all over the place, and you are paying them. Then chances are if you buy the black box, and create a model, some kind of calculations is better than nothing. A little order is good. And maybe, just maybe, if you hire the best guys to create the model and maintain the system, then you can get COST AND TIME savings.

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

I did not think that the guys in the 60’s messed up. They had 3000 projects running at the same time and they wanted to land on the moon. So I think that it is safe to say that if you want to build a project on earth for $5M or less, you do not need a progam. You need a calculator only. On the other hand, if you want to go outside the Earth, they you need computers for communication back and forth. I think that construction (like LEGO) is done manually up their as well.

On the other hand, if you have layers and layers of people all over the place, and you are paying them. Then chances are if you buy the black box, and create a model, some kind of calculations is better than nothing. A little order is good. And maybe, just maybe, if you hire the best guys to create the model and maintain the system, then you can get COST AND TIME savings.

With kind regards,

Samer
Dear Samer, First of all, let me tell that I agree with you. More than that I am strongly against project schedulers that draw the schedules. When implementing PM System we suggest to create a set of databases (reference-books) including, Resource Dictionary, Material Dictionary, Cost Components Dictionary, Material Requirements per unit of volume for typical activities and assignments, unit costs for typical activities and assignments, Typical Resource Crews, Resource Productivities for typical assignments, etc. The usage of these databases is mandatory. Besides, PMO creates a set of typical fragments - small projects that model typical technologies (like construction of 1km of the pipeline, making 30m2 wall, etc.). These fragments are created with the use of above databases. Creating new project model is very simple. It is enough to create WBS or use the template and then use Replace the phase by the new project function selecting requirent fragment and adjusting the volumes of work. With the corporate reference-books and libraries it is easy to create new project models, these models are more reliable (are based on the corporate norms), everybody understands what data are in the foundation. This is the right way to create schedule models.
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

Please read the opinions of other as well on the same issue. Amazingly it is the same:

pscinc.homestead.com/CPM.html

With kind regards,

Samer
Rafael Davila
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Samer,

The paper is related to a complaint about the status quo of PDM software at that time, yes they were correct. At that time and for decades software developers did nothing practical to the resolution of this problem same as Primavera who limited to buy P3 from another developer, then SureTrak also from another developer, then P3e also from another developer that eventually came P6 because of the many bugs and finally to end up being acquired by Oracle. Other software developers are in the same boat, adding nothing relevant but cosmetic.

Yes PDM is more complex than the CPM of the 60’s because it expands the modeling possibilities, probably it was too much for these developers that never introduced much needed functionalities to understand it. Unbelievable, but initially CPM did not take into considerations for limited resources. Take for example resource float, without float you only got a Bar Chart, after resource constraining how can you understand your CPM without true resource float? How can your contract talk about float if the required software is incapable of providing you with the true value of this metric?

About the complaint on how some other functionalities such as constraints that mess with accepted CPM computations I agree, if the software developer insist on these being available then just avoid them in your modeling. Unfortunately these developers never provided for this metrics to be available for comparison purposes without an easy way to toggle them on and off forcing some of us as well as many analysts to either remove them temporarily or keep a second model without the constraints that fool the PDM backward computations. This is an issue when it is the Owner who requires you to include such implementation of constraints.

As far as I recall in this paper there was also the issue about the technical competence of those doing CPM scheduling, this is not for everyone, the scheduler must be knowledgeable of what is being modeled and must be capable to deal with the available software at the time. Don’t blame the tool for its irresponsible use, start requiring that the persons in charge of the creation of the model be capable and competent; this includes the scheduler as well as the project manager, if the project manager is incapable of dealing with CPM at least require for a capable assistant.

Spider Project team is making all attempts to make it possible for you to understand the logic, they provided us with true resource float and are moving forward with other functionalities with this purpose, issues other developers don’t dare to explore. The concepts are not difficult to understand, the programming is, we should encourage the developer to tame the software for us. Spider team is raising the bar and this will eventually make others to follow for the benefit of all, in a way PP is part of this, we represent the end user, wise developers are listening.

Best regards,
Rafael
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

First of all, let me tell you that I hope that I have the opportunity to work on your software in the future.

The primary issue that I have is that a tool must serve the Owner/ Construction Manager in taking the right decision on the project to save time and cost. I also believe that this is much needed at any point in history.

I can safely say that according to my experience a project of a budget of around ($5 Million, 2 years) can be completed with without anytools whatsoever. The only scheduling that is needed is an excel sheet and a calculator. The Construction Manager can draw the schedule with excel on ONE page and monitor it and reduce the cost on a daily basis. I have done this at least 50 times.

On larger projects, where the uncertainities are more, different people are working on different tasks, the issue becomes harder. The actual plan is difficult to FORM. Time is needed to create it, and many other factors come into play. For the sake of argument let us assume that the only issue here is to come up with a plan to save time and money. Speaking from my experience, I get 5000 activites (150 pages) projects frequently, and I review and return them within 4 hours for the simple reason that it is not representing the project. Most frequently, a planner prepares the Schedule, and the experienced people do not have the time to check the Method Statement, Constructabilities, Deliverables, relationships, and Contractural constraints.

I am confident that you program Spider is a magnificent tool. The issue in not with the black box. The issue is with creating the model. The Construction Manager/ Owner (who are the decision makers) must be able to communicate directly with the software to take the important decision. Nowadays, the tools are driven by Schedulers who know how to use the tool (to some extent/ depending on their experience) without the proper interaction from management. This tool is used to create Schedules to show contactual milestones, and unless the other party is experienced enough to debug the submitted program, it become a contractural document that is supposed to be monitored and tracked to achieve the project.

My suggestion is simple, Model Creation must be simple enough like punching the buttons on a calculator. I think that you need to communicate with Texas Instrument and create such a tool.

I also suggest that you send the 4 guys copies of Spider with all the supporting documents. Let them test it and use it and next they sit down and have coffee, they would be able to talk about something of value available on the market and ENR can publish the state of the available tools around the world. Of course, I understand that there are many other issues at play here, but it seems that they guys genuinely want to improve the status.

No body is talking about the Black Box, everyone is assuming it is working correctly. The issue here is that getting the right information, in the right order to create the right model is something left for specialist.

With kind regards,

Samer

Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Vladimir,

First of all, let me tell you that I hope that I have the opportunity to work on your software in the future.

The primary issue that I have is that a tool must serve the Owner/ Construction Manager in taking the right decision on the project to save time and cost. I also believe that this is much needed at any point in history.

I can safely say that according to my experience a project of a budget of around ($5 Million, 2 years) can be completed with without anytools whatsoever. The only scheduling that is needed is an excel sheet and a calculator. The Construction Manager can draw the schedule with excel on ONE page and monitor it and reduce the cost on a daily basis. I have done this at least 50 times.

On larger projects, where the uncertainities are more, different people are working on different tasks, the issue becomes harder. The actual plan is difficult to FORM. Time is needed to create it, and many other factors come into play. For the sake of argument let us assume that the only issue here is to come up with a plan to save time and money. Speaking from my experience, I get 5000 activites (150 pages) projects frequently, and I review and return them within 4 hours for the simple reason that it is not representing the project. Most frequently, a planner prepares the Schedule, and the experienced people do not have the time to check the Method Statement, Constructabilities, Deliverables, relationships, and Contractural constraints.

I am confident that you program Spider is a magnificent tool. The issue in not with the black box. The issue is with creating the model. The Construction Manager/ Owner (who are the decision makers) must be able to communicate directly with the software to take the important decision. Nowadays, the tools are driven by Schedulers who know how to use the tool (to some extent/ depending on their experience) without the proper interaction from management. This tool is used to create Schedules to show contactual milestones, and unless the other party is experienced enough to debug the submitted program, it become a contractural document that is supposed to be monitored and tracked to achieve the project.

My suggestion is simple, Model Creation must be simple enough like punching the buttons on a calculator. I think that you need to communicate with Texas Instrument and create such a tool.

I also suggest that you send the 4 guys copies of Spider with all the supporting documents. Let them test it and use it and next they sit down and have coffee, they would be able to talk about something of value available on the market and ENR can publish the state of the available tools around the world. Of course, I understand that there are many other issues at play here, but it seems that they guys genuinely want to improve the status.

No body is talking about the Black Box, everyone is assuming it is working correctly. The issue here is that getting the right information, in the right order to create the right model is something left for specialist.

With kind regards,

Samer

Hi Samer,
what is your proposal?
Remember track "Let’s Challenge Spider"?
Ask or suggest something that is required but is not supported.

Spider Project is a tool for finding proper management decisions based on the information that was entered. If you created reliable schedule model then the software shall provide you with the optimal or near optimal solutions for the project schedule, resource assignments and usage, that take into consideration all existing constraints.
What is missing?

The paper that you mentioned described the oppinions of some people. By the way none of them knew Spider Project. Do you agree with them?

Best Regards,
Vladimir
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Rafael,

I came accross a very interesting article published in the ENR magazine in 2003:

" Critics Can’t Find the Logic in Many of Today’s CPM Schedules." It is a 4 page article quoting "Priests" and "tool makers" in this field.

www.cpmguru.com/.../ENR%20-%20Critics%20of%20Todays%20CPM%20Schedules.pdf

So, we can reasonable say that up to 2003, according to published sources, that the state of Scheduling is a mess.

The basic need of the Owner/Construction Manager to save time and money is not met "easily" by the available tools in the market. The user-tool interface is a mess. Users can’t transform their ideas into CORRECT networks of logic easily, in order for the black box to calculate it correctly.

I still think that we need to get the guys in a brainstorming session and transform that "Lebombo bone" into a modern tool. Think of it like an ipod. On one side you input the data and on the other side you get the time and cost savings.

I think that I just came up with the next ORACLE market penetration idea :) load your software of choice on ur ipod for $9.99/mo :)

With kind regards,

Samer
Samer Zawaydeh
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Dear Mike,

Yes the Slide Rule is very important discovery. It lasted 300+ years.

But I still think the newest information is the "Lebombo bone" from 35,000B.C.

With kind regards,

SAmer
Mike Testro
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Hi Samer

I forgot the most important one.

Circa 1650 the invention of the slide rule following John Napiers discovey of logarithms.

Best regards

Mike Testro

Samer Zawaydeh
User offline. Last seen 24 weeks 6 days ago. Offline
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Posts: 1664
Dear Mike,

hahah. Thank you for the remark. I will do better next time.

With kind regards,

Samer
Mike Testro
User offline. Last seen 5 days 21 hours ago. Offline
Joined: 14 Dec 2005
Posts: 4392
Hi Samer

A excellent piece of research but you missed out some English contributions:

1. Charles Babbage - Difference Engine - 1849 - a fully programmable calculating machine.

2. Bletchly Park WW11 code breaking computer constructed by Alan Turin circa 1941

3. Clive Sinclair first pocket calculator using LED’s early 1960’s

And it was the Ancient Greeks who discovered electricity by rubbing an amber rod with silk to generate powerful static charges - the Greek word for amber is electron.

Best regards

Mike Testro