Fall 2003

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GoldSim News


Tips and Tricks


Knowledge Base


Model Library


What's Cooking



Hyperlink objects can provide a powerful and easy way to navigate your model. By using the "Container" command within a Hyperlink object, you can tell GoldSim to jump directly to a Container when the object is clicked. You can further improve this navigation tool by replacing the default image for the Hyperlink object with an appropriate image (e.g., a picture of the subsystem to which it jumps).



The GoldSim Knowledge Base contains articles addressing frequently asked questions, workarounds for known problems, and advice on applying GoldSim. The Knowledge Base is available from within the GoldSim Resource Center (GRC). A few of the recent additions include:

Article 33: Viewing the random number seed for a Stochastic

Article 34: Precision of computed and stored results

Article 35: Displaying very small or very large results

Article 36: GoldSim application error on exit (due to printer driver incompatibilities)

We encourage you to visit the Knowledge Base, as even expert users are likely to find useful information there.



The GoldSim Model Library allows GoldSim users to build on the experience and knowledge of others by sharing models. The Library is available from within the GoldSim Resource Center (GRC).

Within the last few months we have added two models to the model library, both of which provide examples of the use of the new Convolution element:

Model 33: Convolution integral for warranty costs

Model 34: Convolution integral for earthquake response

If you have a model that you think would be worthwhile to post to the library, please send it, along with text describing the model, to library@goldsim.com.



Welcome to the Fall 2003 Issue of the GoldSim Newsletter!

The mission of the GoldSim Technology Group is to provide state-of-the-art software, training and expert consulting to help you understand complex systems and make better decisions in an uncertain world. Our GoldSim simulation software package provides the power, flexibility and usability necessary to efficiently simulate and understand the future behavior of complex systems in business, engineering and science.

The goal of the GoldSim Newsletter is to provide information that helps you get the most out of GoldSim. We also hope that the Newsletter can act as a vehicle to build connections between users within the GoldSim community.

Each newsletter delivers the latest GoldSim news, as well as a number of regular items. This one includes GoldSim news items, a Featured GoldSim Application, a tip from the GoldSim developers, a list of new models added to the GoldSim Model Library, a list of new GoldSim Knowledge Base articles, and a description of new features that the GoldSim Development Team is currently working on. Each Newsletter is archived on our website so you can revisit old issues.

Since this newsletter is for you, we encourage you to send us your comments and contributions. Send your contributions to newsletter@goldsim.com.

The GoldSim Technology Group


GoldSim Version 8 Released

Version 8 of GoldSim was released on November 4, 2003. Version 8 has a number of new features. One of these is a new element: the Convolution Element. This is a powerful new element that lets you simulate future consequences that can be mathematically described as convolution integrals. There are many applications for convolution integrals in business, engineering and science. Two examples of its application have been added to the Model Library (see side bar on left).

Other new features include a new array constructor that allows you to create arrays "on the fly" within an input field, the ability to define Stochastic elements as vectors, improved array functions (the if statement and exponentiation can now be applied on a term-by-term basis to arrays), improved hyperlink functionality, a new Text Box object that can be used to document models, and improved functionality for globally changing symbols for elements. A number of powerful improvements were also made to the Contaminant Transport Module, including a new 'direct transfer' option for mass flux that provides a very general first-order transfer process for cases that aren't advective or diffusive. In addition to the more visible changes, over 200 "behind-the-scenes" changes were also made to GoldSim to improve its overall performance.

All current members of the GoldSim Subscription Program can download Version 8 now from the GoldSim Resource Center (GRC). Note that both the GoldSim User's Guide and the Contaminant Transport Module User's Guide have been modified for this version and these can also be downloaded from the GRC. Of course, all of the new featues are also described in the Help file, which will automatically be updated when you update the software to this version. Once you update the software, don't forget to read the Release Notes to see a complete list of the new features and changes included in Version 8.

GoldSim Reviewed in August Issue of ORMS Today

A review of GoldSim appeared in the August issue of ORMS Today. ORMS Today is the magazine for members of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS). This bi-monthly publication provides a comprehensive look at operations research and management science through stories, feature articles, case studies, software reviews and surveys authored by recognized leaders in the field. Operations research and management science are interdisciplinary sciences aimed at solving operational and societal problems arising in all areas of industry, business and government. The review is available online.



Modeling Infectious Disease Transmission Using GoldSim

Greg Paoli, and Todd Ruthman, Decisionalysis Risk Consultants, and Barry Michaels, The Michaels Group.

The need to better understand the transmission of infectious agents has been underscored by recent events, including the international SARS crisis and reports of the considerable burden of disease associated with infections acquired in hospitals. Many questions remain regarding the best way to reduce transmission of infectious agents. The answers are of great interest to public health as well as to the health care, food service and consumer products industries.

The transfer of pathogens between patients and health care workers in a hospital is an important consideration in developing hospital policies and procedures. Hospitals may implement one or more mitigation strategies (e.g. gloves and other barriers, isolation of patients, hand hygiene products or procedures) to reduce the incidences of infection due to pathogen transfer. These mitigation strategies are implemented in a very complex and dynamic environment. Computer simulation of the transmission and mitigation processes can improve our understanding of exactly how the system generates and propagates risk and how to most effectively manage it.

This article discusses the use of GoldSim to model the transfer of pathogens between patients and health care workers in a hospital. The model generates simulated outbreaks in hospital wards, where the onset, extent of spread, and control of the outbreak is a manifestation of natural variability and the impact of simulated control strategies.



Although we just released a new version, the GoldSim development team is already hard at work preparing for a point release (Version 8.1) in early 2004. Version 8.1 will contain some features that we are very excited about, but could not complete in time for Version 8. This includes:

  • Container-Specific Timesteps. This is a powerful new feature that allows different parts of your GoldSim model to use different timesteps. That is, if part of your model (e.g., a Container representing a specific subsystem) requires short time steps, but the rest doesn't, you will be able to specify shorter steps just for that Container.

  • Improved Spreadsheet Element Functionality. We are completely rewriting the Spreadsheet element to make it more powerful and easier to use. This will make it much easier to dynamically import and export data between GoldSim and an Excel spreadsheet. In addition to adding an optional wizard to expedite the entire process, you will be able to specify the spreadsheet range to which you are linking by simply opening the spreadsheet and selecting a range (rather than having to type in the range). When exporting data to a spreadsheet, you will be able to specify ranges dynamically (e.g., outputs for different timesteps and/or realizations will be able to be sent to different columns or different sheets). You will also be able to easily shift specified spreadsheet ranges up, down, left, right and to different sheets so that when a linked spreadsheet is edited, it can quickly be remapped to the Spreadsheet element.

  • Reliability Module. For nearly a year we have been working on a powerful new module that will facilitate simulation of the reliability and performance of complex engineering systems (e.g., vehicles, spacecraft, factories, power plants). This Reliability Module is in beta testing and we continue to tweak and improve it. We expect to release it with Version 8.1.

As always, we encourage our users to send their requests and suggestions for improvements to GoldSim. If you have a specific request, please contact us at software@goldsim.com.


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