Vendor Workshops

Take advantage of in-depth training in software solutions provided by leading analytics companies. There is no charge for these workshops if you register for the INFORMS Annual Meeting. All workshops take place on Saturday, October 31, at the Convention Center.

Sign up for any of these workshops when you register for the meeting. If you have already registered, call 800.446.3676 or 443.757.3500 to add workshops.


Workshop: Join our Hackathon at the INFORMS Annual Meeting
Saturday, 9am-7:30pm, Room 103A

It’s time to roll up your sleeves and show off your skills!  AIMMS, Southwest Airlines and Booz Allen Hamilton are providing a unique hackathon experience during this year’s conference. The hackathon will tackle a real world problem from Southwest Airlines, encouraging students and recent grads to use modeling and optimization in order to solve pressing business challenges. There will be a prize, snacks, networking, coffee, t-shirts, and a lot of fun!  The hackathon will take place on October 31, 2015 from 9am to 7:30pm.

To register, please complete the form on this page. You will receive a confirmation email with details including an AIMMS license and short tutorial so you can get familiar with the software.


AnyLogic North America

Workshop: AnyLogic 7.2, Built-in Database | Arash Mahdavi, Simulation Modeling Consultant | Tom Baggio, Sr. Solutions Architect
Saturday, October 31, 3-5:30 pm, Room 103C

During the workshop, we will build a logistics model and show the unique capabilities of AnyLogic 7.2, the leader in simulation modeling technology. The model will include mining, rail, and sea transportation. We will use agent-based modeling technology; the agents will be created and parameterized directly from the built-in AnyLogic database. To demonstrate AnyLogic’s extensibility:

  1. The transportation part of the model will use AnyLogic GIS maps for both routing and visualization.
  2. We will also show how to convert shape files into GIS sea routes.
  3. The mining part of the model will use the new AnyLogic Fluid Library.

At the end of the workshop, we will showcase powerful new features of the upcoming AnyLogic 7.3 release.


Do Analytics

Workshop: Easy and Fast, Optext Mathematical Model System Represents the New Way for Do Analytics
Saturday, 9-11:30am, Room 105B

You will learn about:

  1. Make mathematical models without programming
  2. Information systems: the alternative to make complex mathematical models
  3. EXCEL as interface for “any” optimization technology
  4. Connect SQL databases without knowing SQL
  5. A real complex model: The Optimization Model of the Economic Dispatch Operation for the National Plan of Electricity Transmission in Peru.
  6. OPTEX Optimization Server



Workshop: Advances to modeling and deploying optimization applications with FICO Xpress
Saturday, 12-2:30pm, Room 104A

FICO® Xpress Optimization Suite helps organizations develop and deploy optimization applications that solve the biggest real-world challenges faster than ever, leading to the best possible business decisions. It combines high-performance linear, mixed-integer and nonlinear solvers, an easy to learn and flexible modeling language and rapid application development capabilities. Learn about the modeling and solver improvements, such as R connectivity, model encryption, solution accuracy, robust modeling and non-linear multi-start capabilities.


Frontline Systems, Inc.

Workshop: Analytics in Your Browser, Your Spreadsheet, and Your Own Application
Saturday, 3-5:30pm, Room 107A

If you build analytic models for your company or clients, or use analytics in your own applications, don’t miss this workshop — and prepare to be surprised by how much easier your work can be.  We’ll cover analytics in Excel Online and Google Sheets, analytics leveraging Microsoft Excel, Tableau and Power BI, analytics in your web browser, and analytics models in your own desktop, web or mobile application — including data mining and predictive analytics, simulation and risk analysis, conventional and stochastic optimization.  We’ll show how you can solve the largest industrial-strength problems, while spending less time and money than you expected.


GAMS Development Corp

Workshop: Introduction to Modeling in GAMS | Lutz Westerman,
Saturday, 3-5:30pm, Room 104A

We demonstrate many of the capabilities of the GAMS software as we start with a simple optimization model and build it out by adding nonlinear and integer variables to the model and connecting it with a GUI in a sample application.


Gurobi Optimization, Inc.

Workshop: Recent Developments in the Gurobi Optimizer | Dr. Robert Bixby, Chief Strategy Office and Co-Founder, Gurobi Optimization | Dr. Chris Maes, Senior Developer, Gurobi Optimization | Dr. Renan Garcia, Optimization Support Engineer, Gurobi Optimization
Saturday, October 31, 3-5:30pm, Room 105b

In this workshop we’ll talk about the latest developments in the Gurobi Optimizer. We’ll discuss the new Gurobi Instant Cloud, a signifcant enhancement to our Cloud offering which makes it very easy to launch one or more Gurobi machines when you need them. We’ll also talk about our new Gurobi 6.5 release, which includes unusually large performance enhancements and several new features.



Workshop:IBM Watson Analytics Workshop | IBM Academic Initiative Group
Saturday, 12-2:30pm, Room 107B

The IBM Watson Analytics Workshop is a workshop designed for professors and students as a way to introduce you to the revolutionary approach to analytics that is smart data discovery.  Industry is demanding strong analytical communication skills with leading edge technologies. Here is an opportunity to learn from Watson Analytics experts how you and your students can benefit from learning about guided exploration, automated predictive analysis, and effortless dashboard creation. Watson Analytics is a cloud based analytics tool that provides quick guided data exploration, automated predictive analysis, and effortless dashboard creation that is unique in its predictive capabilities. Attendees will be given complimentary licenses of IBM® Watson™ Analytics Professional Edition for up to 100 users.

WorkshopPrescriptive Analytics with IBM Decision Optimization and CPLEX Optimizer | IBM Optimization Group
Saturday, 3-5:30 pm, Room 107b

You will learn about:

  • IBM’s vision for Advanced Analytics, combining descriptive, predictive, prescriptive, and cognitive insights (including leveraging optimization in platforms such as Watson Analytics)
  • The latest on CPLEX Optimization Studio, Decision Optimization Center, and DOcloud
  • Leveraging DOcloud to solve models on cloud (sign up for the free trial at
  • IBM Decision Optimization for Python, including quick prototyping with Python Notebooks
  • The SPSS-Decision Optimization connectors for end-to-end analytics solutions

Follow us on twitter @IBMoptimization


LINDO Systems, Inc.

Workshop: How to Add Optimization to Planning Under Uncertainty with Scenarios | Linus Schrage, President, LINDO Systems, Inc.
Saturday, 3-5:30pm, Room 105A

Business models can be fraught with uncertainties such as demand, product prices, R&D success, etc. Scenarios are an intuitive way of representing these uncertainties. Come learn how to easily apply a wide ranging tools for making decisions under uncertainty — from the sophisticated (stochastic optimization, robust optimization) to the simple and intuitive (parametric analysis, K-best solutions, and tornado diagrams). Through real world based examples, we will show you which tool is best for each situation.


Maximal Software, Inc.

Workshop: Introducing New Release 5.0 of the MPL Modeling System and the OptiMax Component Library | Bjarni Kristjansson, President, Maximal Software, Inc.,
Saturday, 12-2:30pm, Room 105A

Maximal Software recently came out with a new major release 5.0 of the MPL Modeling System.  This new release represents a major milestone for MPL, and offers numerous new features and enhancements to the software.  Among the highlights are: new modern directory structure for the MPL installation, completely redesigned documentation with 24 separate user/reference guides in multiple formats, new solver updates, new Reverse Hessian algorithm for faster solving of nonlinear models, and enhanced support for formulating stochastic models.  Major updates were also implemented for both the MPL OptiMax Component Library and the MPL Callable Library for deployment, including new callbacks, new exception handlers, and enhanced multi-threaded support.


Optimization Direct

Workshop: CPLEX Optimization Studio, Modeling, Theory, Best Practices and Case Studies | Dr. Robert Ashford, Alkis Vazacopoulos, Optimization Direct, Inc.
Saturday, 9-11:30am, Room 104A

Recent advancements in Linear and Mixed Programing give us the capability to solve larger Optimization Problems. CPLEX Optimization Studio solves large-scale optimization problems and enables better business decisions and resulting financial benefits in areas such as supply chain management, operations, healthcare, retail, transportation, logistics and asset management.   In this workshop using CPLEX Optimization Studio we will discuss modeling practices, case studies and demonstrate good practices for solving Hard Optimization Problems. We will also discuss recent CPLEX performance improvements and recently added features.



Workshop:  Solving Business Problems with SAS Analytics and OPTMODEL | Ed Hughes, Principal Product Manager | Rob Pratt, Senior R&D Manager | David Kraay, Senior Operations Research Specialist
Saturday, 3:00-5:30pm, Room 104B

SAS provides diverse analytic capabilities, integrated with OPTMODEL’s optimization modeling and solution capabilities. OPTMODEL provides unified support for many model types and methods, including an expanding suite of standard solvers and support for customized algorithms.

We’ll demonstrate OPTMODEL’s power and versatility in building and solving optimization models, including the significant improvements resulting from newer features. We’ll emphasize integration with SAS data, analytic, and reporting capabilities, focusing primarily on case studies from a broad range of industries


SAS JMP Division

Workshop: Interactive and Visual Data Analysis with JMP 12 Pro | Darryl Revenew, JMP Academic Ambassador
Saturday, 3-5:30pm, Room 106B

JMP®, developed by SAS Institute, is dynamic and interactive desktop software for data analysis, visualization and Predictive modeling.  In this workshop we’ll demonstrate JMP tools for data preparation, interactive exploratory data analysis and statistical modeling. We’ll build logistic and least squares regression models with stepwise regression, generalized regression, develop classification and regression trees, and build flexible neural networks.  We’ll explore bootstrapped forests and boosted trees, illustrate methods for model validation, and visualize results using the Graph Builder®, Data Filter, and the Prediction Profiler.  Finally, we’ll compare competing models using JMP Pro’s Model Comparison.


SigmaXL, Inc.

Workshop:Variation Reduction and Robust Design Using DiscoverSim™ | John Noguera, CTO & Co-founder, SigmaXL, Inc.
Saturday, 3-5:30pm, Room 103B

DiscoverSim is a user friendly Excel Add-In for Monte Carlo Simulation and Stochastic Global Optimization. Version 2 is now bundled with MIDACO-SOLVER, one of the world’s strongest evolutionary solvers for mixed discrete-continuous-constrained optimization. MIDACO (MixedInteger Distributed Ant Colony Optimization) was developed in collaboration with the European Space Agency. We present two case studies: Variation Reduction of Catapult and Robust Design of Shut-Off Valve.



Workshop: Teach Simulation, Not Software |Sander Vermeulen, Head of Services, Simul8 Corporation
Saturday, 3pm, Room 106A

When teaching simulation, the purpose is not for students to learn software; it’s to get them understanding the benefits that simulation can bring to decision making. SIMUL8 was created with this in mind and as a result our intuitive software allows students to build and run their first simulation in less than an hour and see the results.

Come along to our workshop and learn how SIMUL8 can be used to teach simulation, and find out how our online training materials help teach the art of simulation and ORMS to students, so that they learn both the practical and softer skills required to complete a successful simulation project.