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Subject: new OASIS discussion list: Math Optimization

Upon the request by three eligible participants, I have created an OASIS
Discussion List whose purpose is discussing the possible creation of one 
or more OASIS Technical Committees on the subject of math optimization. 
The proposal is appended to this message.

The discussion list may last up to 90 days. The participants in the 
discussion list should decide if there is sufficient interest to form an 
OASIS TC, then write a proposal to start the TC (including the TC 
charter) and select a convener.

The discussion list has been proposed by the following members of OASIS:

Robert Fourer, 4er@iems.northwestern.edu, Individual member
Leonardo Lopes, leo@sie.arizona.edu, Individual member
Kipp Martin, kipp.martin@gsb.uchicago.edu, Individual member

The discussion leader will be Kipp Martin.

In order to participate in this discussion you should subscribe to the 
discussion list by sending a message to 

OASIS membership is not required in order to subscribe to this list. If 
you do not wish to subscribe but wish to monitor the discussion you may 
view the list archives at 


Karl F. Best
Vice President, OASIS
office  +1 978.667.5115 x206     mobile +1 978.761.1648
karl.best@oasis-open.org      http://www.oasis-open.org

Discussion List Name:

Proposed Vocabulary for Representing Mathematical Optimization Instances

Statement of Scope:

The purpose of this discussion group is to prepare a charter for the 
formation of an OASIS Technical Committee. The goal of the Technical 
Committee is to develop an XML based standard for representing instances 
of mathematical optimization problems.

Mathematical optimization is an important tool for solving business 
problems. There are numerous modeling systems for generating 
optimization models and numerous solvers (especially linear programming 
solvers) for optimizing them. However, it is often not possible for 
modelers to combine their preferred modeling system with their preferred 
solver. Current modeling systems use their own proprietary model 
instance formats that various solvers have been adapted to recognize. 
The existence of all of these formats suggests that one way to encourage 
modeling system and solver compatibility is to use a standard 
representation of a problem instance. Such a standard must: be simple to 
manipulate and validate; be able to express instance-specific and 
vendor-specific information; and promote the integration of optimization 
software with other software (for example supply chain management 
software, production scheduling software, etc.).

An initial proposed standard for representing linear and integer 
programming developed by Robert Fourer, Leo Lopes, and Kipp Martin is 
LPFML (see http://gsbkip.uchicago.edu/fml/fml.html). However, an open 
forum for discussion, modification, and enhancement of a standard is 
needed. It is important that all interested members of the operations 
research community have an opportunity for systematic input in 
developing this standard.

After addressing the problem of a standard for linear programming, the 
Technical Committee can address the broader task of developing instance 
representation for more specialized optimization problems (e.g. 
quadratic programs, stochastic programs, network flows, constraint 
logic) and for more general nonlinear optimization problems.

The purpose of the Technical Committee is to establish a standard for 
representing problem instances in XML.  It will not be the charge of the 
Technical Committee to establish a standard for modeling languages or to 
develop an XML based modeling language. We expect this Technical 
Committee to have a title such as: OASIS Mathematical Optimization 
Representation Technical Committee.

Proposed by:

Robert Fourer, 4er@iems.northwestern.edu, Individual member
Leonardo Lopes, leo@sie.arizona.edu, Individual member
Kipp Martin, kipp.martin@gsb.uchicago.edu, Individual member

Discussion List Leader:

Kipp Martin

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