Shortest path to the world

Sean Donelan sean at donelan.com
Thu Jul 16 01:07:12 CDT 2009


On Wed, 15 Jul 2009, Leo Bicknell wrote:
> Quite frankly, your question reminds me a bit of the geography
> question "where is the center of the US".
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geographic_center_of_the_contiguous_United_States
> While nifty trivia, it acutally has no useful value for well,
> anything.  If it did, there would be more there than a small monument.

Unless you were Federal Express, and wanted to understand where the 
"center" of your service area was to help pick better airport hub 
locations. Add in some offsets for time zones, weather, and even more 
complexity and your hub ends up in Memphis.  Optimal can sometimes mean 
its good enough, even the momument at the center of the United States 
isn't actually located at the precise center.

http://ardent.mit.edu/airports/ASP_exercises/ASP%20matl%20for%20posting%202007/UPS%20and%20FedEx%20Hub%20Operations%20Cosmas%20Martini.pdf

Operations research is filled with people trying to figure out the optimal 
number of hubs, hub locations, routes between them for all sorts of stuff.

So where are the operations research people studying the Internet?




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