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METHODS AND SYSTEMS FOR SCHEDULE GENERATION

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000229967D
Publication Date: 2013-Aug-09

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Related People

Michael Brian Bosland: INVENTOR

Abstract

Methods, systems, and computer readable media for generating group schedules are disclosed. One or more individual schedules for one or more users are received, and cost models are established based at least in part on the received schedules. Using a search solution technique, a first group schedule is generated by a processor. The search solution technique uses the cost model and a first cost heuristic. The generated first group schedule is associated with a first schedule cost. A second group schedule is generated by the processor using the search solution technique. The search solution technique uses the cost model and a second cost heuristic lower than the first inflation factor. The second group schedule is associated with a second schedule cost. A superior group schedule is determined based on the first and second schedule costs, and provided to a user.

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METHODS AND SYSTEMS FOR SCHEDULE GENERATION BACKGROUND

Field


[0001]Embodiments relate to generating schedules for multiple users.

Background

[0002]In many work environments, employees are often assigned work shifts that are undesirable for many reasons. For example, one or more employees may be assigned to work weekend hours, or late evening hours, to ensure that at least one employee is monitoring a critical system or available to fix problems that may occur at any hour. Manually creating schedules that incorporate employee priorities and that result in an equitable distribution of undesirable shifts is time consuming and does not always result in an optimal distribution.

BRIEF SUMMARY

[0003]Embodiments described herein relate to automatic generation of a group schedule. In accordance with one embodiment, a method for generating schedules includes receiving one or more individual schedules for one or more users. The method further includes establishing cost models based at least in part on the individual schedules. The method further includes generating a first group schedule using a search solution technique using the cost model and a first cost heuristic. The first group schedule is generated by a processor, and is associated with a first schedule cost. The method further includes generating a second group schedule by the processor using the search solution technique. The search solution technique uses the cost model and a second cost heuristic that is lower than the first cost heuristic. The second group schedule is associated with a second schedule cost. A superior group schedule is determined, wherein the superior group schedule is one of the first group schedule and second group schedule, based on the first schedule cost and second schedule cost. The superior group schedule is provided to a user, based on the determination.


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[0004]Further embodiments, features, and advantages of the invention, as well as the structure and operation of the various embodiments of the invention are described in detail below with reference to accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS/FIGURES

[0005]Embodiments of the invention are described with reference to the accompanying drawings. In the drawings, like reference numbers may indicate identical or functionally similar elements. The drawing in which an element first appears is generally indicated by the left-most digit in the corresponding reference number.


[0006]FIG. 1 is a diagram of an example tree structure.

[0007]FIG. 2 is a flow diagram of a method for generating a schedule in accordance with an embodiment.

[0008]FIG. 3 is a diagram of a system for generating a schedule in accordance with an embodiment.

[0009]FIG. 4 is a diagram of an example computer system that can be used in embodiments.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0010]While the present invention is described herein with reference to the illustrative embodiments for particular applications, it s...