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Agena Newsletter Number 5
AgenaRisk: Bayesian Network and Simulation Technology for Risk Analysis and Decision Support


Siemens report on their experience of using Bayesian Nets and AgenaRisk

Siemens presented the results of using Bayesian Nets for software project estimation and trade-off analysis at the Sixth International Conference on Quality Software (QSIC'06) Read the full paper here.

Bayesian Study Finds That Higher Batting Averages Don't Always Mean Better Hitting Ability 

Jesse Frey, a mathematician  at Villanova, recently completed a study that uses Bayesian analysis to determine which batting averages in major league baseball are the best indicators of ability. The full story is here.

Norman Fenton to give keynote  talks at two international conferences. 

Norman Fenton has been invited to give the keynote address to the IEEE ICSE-PROMISE Workshop in Minneapolis on 20 May, and a keynote address at the Mathematical Methods in Reliability Conference (MMR 07) in Glasgow in July. Full papers, together with a number of other new publications  are here

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If A is half of B why can't I conclude that B is two times A?

Suppose you known that, on average, 50% of the trucks that start out in a military campaign are fully operational at the end. Then you would be correct in deducing that, if you start with 100 trucks you will end up, on average, with 50 that are fully operational. But, what if you know that you ended a campaign with 50 operational trucks. Then is it correct to assume that, on average, you started with 100? This was a simplified version of a real problem that one of Agena's clients had to tackle and the answer (surprisingly to them) was NO. This has everything to do with the way we reason with prior assumptions (this reasoning lies at the heart of the so-called Bayesian approach to probability).

Click here for the full article, which is one of a series looking at probability puzzles and fallacies. You can see more here.

Software - a risky business?

What exactly is it that makes software such an inherently risky business,
and why are its costs so difficult to judge? The problem has been known about for
decades, but the answer has always seemed elusive, at least until now. The Risk
Assessment and Decision Analysis research group (RADAR) at Queen Mary,
University of London, think they have the answer.

Click here for the full article which was written by Peter Hearty a PhD student at Queen Mary who is funded by EPSRC and an Agena CASE award. This essay won runner-up prize in the EPSRC Essay Competition

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