Computer Business Simulation Design: Novelty & Complexity Issues


  • Jeremy J. S. B. Hall


Developing a business simulation is a time consuming, costly and potentially risky task. And, the risk of time and cost overrun is associated with the novelty and complexity of the simulation. This paper suggests the aspects of simulation novelty and complexity that are the sources of design risk and explores these in the context of a range of actual simulation designs so that designers can take action when forecasting costs, the development schedule and starting the design and development work. The areas of design novelty and difficulty are described and discussed in the context of five representative simulations. Following this the impacts on actual design difficulty and complexity are discussed and analyzed for the simulations. Finally, a design time model is proposed that empirically links model size with duration and novelty and design time with model size. In conclusion, the paper suggests that design time can be forecast from simulation duration provided the forecast is adjusted to take into account simulation novelty.