# RESEARCH ARTICLES | RISK + CRYSTAL BALL + ANALYTICS

## Subject Matter Expertise in Distribution Selection (2/8)

Are there discrete univariate probability distribution functions (PDFs) that can be used to simulate college basketball scores? Do we, as avid basketball observers, know enough to suggest one discrete PDF is better than another? In fitting distributions to data in your business problems, the analyst will be asking the same types of questions. If the analyst is not an expert on the inputs and their behavior, he or she should seek out a subject-matter expert (SME) who can provide insight. Putting experience and theoretical knowledge together this way is a best practice for distribution selection.

## Subject Matter Expertise in Distribution Selection (2/8)

Are there discrete univariate probability distribution functions (PDFs) that can be used to simulate college basketball scores? Do we, as avid basketball observers, know enough to suggest one discrete PDF is better than another? In fitting distributions to data in your business problems, the analyst will be asking the same types of questions. If the analyst is not an expert on the inputs and their behavior, he or she should seek out a subject-matter expert (SME) who can provide insight. Putting experience and theoretical knowledge together this way is a best practice for distribution selection.

## Discrete Distribution Fitting to Duke Basketball Scores, in Crystal Ball (1/8)

Let us assume we have a batch of historical data in a spreadsheet. Our mission-of-the-moment is to use this data and fit probability distributions that describe its past variability (or uncertainty). Consider using either Crystal Ball or ModelRisk to do this task. We offer free trials of both to registered users. If you register here, you can get yours too. Try fitting the same data using these two different packages. Let us know how and why one is better than the other. In demonstrating these capabilities, we gain first-hand experience on the usability and capabilities of the alternatives and which features compared have more priority. The best way to judge is to try them out for yourself.

## Discrete Distribution Fitting to Duke Basketball Scores, in Crystal Ball (1/8)

Let us assume we have a batch of historical data in a spreadsheet. Our mission-of-the-moment is to use this data and fit probability distributions that describe its past variability (or uncertainty). Consider using either Crystal Ball or ModelRisk to do this task. We offer free trials of both to registered users. If you register here, you can get yours too. Try fitting the same data using these two different packages. Let us know how and why one is better than the other. In demonstrating these capabilities, we gain first-hand experience on the usability and capabilities of the alternatives and which features compared have more priority. The best way to judge is to try them out for yourself.

## Dealing with Uncertainty

Change is constant. Or so the saying goes. However, even change is ever-varying. So perhaps we should say: Change is constantly changing. As occupants of planet earth, we intuitively know this and yet strive to keep everything the same, at least those things that do well by us. Uncertainty derails the best of our plans, even uncertainties that we recognize up front.

• 9 December 2010
• Author: mckibbinusa
• Number of views: 2485