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Guest Post: Celebrating 25 Years of POM Software

November 2, 2013

Howard WeissOur Guest Post today comes from Prof. Howard Weiss, at Temple University. Howard writes about his 25 years of developing POM for Windows, which we provide free with our OM texts.

This month marks the 25th anniversary of Pearson’s POM software package.  Just as technology has evolved over the past 25 years, so too, has this educational resource.  The initial package, PC-POM, indicated that POM was designed for DOS and would not run on a Mac computer.  Today, POM will work well on a Mac using vmWare or Parallels to emulate Windows.

Jay and Barry decided that PC:POM would be a valuable addition to their text and it became available as AB:POM, where AB stood for our publisher at that time, Allyn & Bacon.  The POM software has been distributed with every edition of Heizer/Render since its inception. (By the way, OR/MS Today (page 10) just interviewed Jay and Barry about their 30+ years of writing).

POMIn 1996, with the rising popularity of Windows, POM was redeveloped for Windows.  While the solution techniques remained the same, it was a monumental challenge to change the graphical user interface to match the look and feel of Windows.   Cutting and pasting between POM and other Windows programs such as Excel and Word were built into POM.  For preparing the manual, scissors and paste were no longer necessary, because screen captures could be copied from POM and pasted into Word.  In addition an option to save problems as Excel files was built into POM in which the models are saved as complete Excel models with appropriate formulas and/or graphs.

An exciting recent addition (in Version 4) is the capability to copy from MyOMLab and paste into POM.

Developing the software has been a rewarding venture and it has been very gratifying to hear from students around the world who have used the program.  I hope that if you use POM,  you and your students have had the same positive experiences. I encourage those of you who have not used it to give it a try in your classroom.

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