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Making Hard Decisions with Decision Tools Suite: Update Hardcover – 7 Jan 2005

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 752 pages
  • Publisher: Brooks/Cole; Update ed edition (7 Jan. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0495015083
  • ISBN-13: 978-0495015086
  • Product Dimensions: 25.5 x 20.1 x 5.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,134,289 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Graham Jeffery on 16 Aug. 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book is divided into three equal-sized sections on modelling decisions, uncertainty and preferences. The decision section includes structuring with decision diagrams and decision trees and the process of developing sensitivity analysis and solving the decision problem. The book has been updated a few times, but its recommendations regarding software are inevitably out of date.

The uncertainty section is a good introduction to probability theory and the rules for manipulating probabilities. It describes how one might assess real-world probabilities of future events and continuous distributions, and overcome bias, but the description is thin. The book seems to rely instead on theoretical probability models and introduces the bionomial, Poisson, exponential, normal and beta distributions, material in my experience that is not entirely relevant to real-world decision problems. It also has a chapter on Monte Carlo simulation.

The preferences section is an academic and thorough discussion of utility theory and multi-attribute decision-making. However, it does not really do justice to the complex multi-dimensional trade-offs that occur in real situations.

For a university course I might use this book. For training businessmen, I prefer the much more practical Decision Analysis for the Professional.
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By Saras on 22 May 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book has the potential to look at decisions in a very different light. I am basing my dissertation on it.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 19 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A thorough but academic treatment of decision analysis 16 Aug. 2010
By Graham Jeffery - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book is divided into three equal-sized sections on modelling decisions, uncertainty and preferences. The decision section includes structuring with decision diagrams and decision trees and the process of developing sensitivity analysis and solving the decision problem. The book has been updated a few times, but its recommendations regarding software are inevitably out of date.

The uncertainty section is a good introduction to probability theory and the rules for manipulating probabilities. It describes how one might assess real-world probabilities of future events and continuous distributions, and overcome bias, but the description is thin. The book seems to rely instead on theoretical probability models and introduces the bionomial, Poisson, exponential, normal and beta distributions, material in my experience that is not entirely relevant to real-world decision problems. It also has a chapter on Monte Carlo simulation.

The preferences section is an academic and thorough discussion of utility theory and multi-attribute decision-making. However, it does not really do justice to the complex multi-dimensional trade-offs that occur in real situations.

For a university course I might use this book. For training businessmen, I prefer the much more practical Decision Analysis for the Professional.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
This book promotes software that doesn't work! 15 Dec. 2011
By J. Allison - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Making Hard Decisions was the required text for an Industrial Engineering graduate school course in Decision Analysis I just completed. The book is not bad. It covers most of the relevant topics in decision analysis and is clear, concise, and informative. But the text is entirely built around the Decision Tools software suite. And the software is inaccessible. The copy that came with the book is an old version that I could only get to install on a Windows 95 PC; it would not install on newer MS OS's. And then it is only operational as a trial for 15 days. When you're expected to use this program for a semester this is a ridiculously small amount of time. So between the difficulty in getting the software installed and the short trial period it's pretty much a waste. Of course you could get a trial version from Palisade's website, but then why pay for the copy that comes with the new book. I recommend finding another alternative DA text that is not as intertwined with a particular software.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Not the best book 24 Aug. 2013
By Affiliate - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I would stay away from this book. Material is presented without any motivation. Students call it Making Decisions Hard and not Making Hard Decisions.
Cengage helped with Software loading issue - updated review 22 May 2012
By Linda A Eberhardt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Update on the review 5/23/2012
After two cycles with Cengage support, we finally got excellent support from Jeanette. She provided explicit instructions that allowed me to download an updated version of the software (@RISK 5.7) that worked in my environment (Win7, Excel 2010). We did have to do one final additional step (move the license file to "Palisade / System" directory) that was not in her instructions. We provided her feedback to add this step and thanked her for her support. We are having issues with teh SQL Server add-on optional feature, but this is a Microsoft issue and definitely not Cengage. Updating the review rating to 4 stars

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Original review
Ordered new ISBN-13: 978-0-495-01508-6 that arrived new with the companion student software in separate CD case that is labeled ISBN-13: 978-0-534-40919-7 for my husband's class. Book and CD appeared to be new. He tried installing the software. No access code is readily obvious in either the book or the companion CD. Palisade points to Cengage. Cengage has replied to a request for support telling me to "look in the book for the access code". Provided them the ISBN of the book and CD and asked explicitly where the "access code" can be found. Waiting for an answer. It is unclear to us whether the book is really not new and the access card has been removed or whether the support from the Cengage is not helpful.
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I would recommend buying this book and hopefully Cengage will provide the excellent feedback that I got from Jeanette on other's first contact with the support desk.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Palisade Decision Suite Student Edition CD Does Not Work 3 Nov. 2012
By k_teong - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Palisade Decision Suite Student Edition CD does not work on my PC. Installed with macro errors.

I am on a Windows 7 Professional O/S on a 32-bit machine, using Microsoft Office 2010.
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