Getting started with Analytica Free 101

Thank you for downloading and installing Analytica Free 101. This page provides recommendations for the steps take to get started learning Analytica and developing your modeling skills.

Tutorial

We recommend you start with the Analytica Tutorial. You can jump to the Tutorial from the Help menu in Analytica. If you are like most people, you’ll learn best by reading through the Tutorial and performing each step yourself in Analytica. You may also find it helpful to watch these short videos, in which the speaker goes through the first few chapters of the Tutorial.

 

Videos

Learn how to open an existing model, calculate results, change inputs and display uncertainty.

Learn how to examine influence diagrams, variables, attributes, definitions and results — the basic techniques for exploring any Analytica model.

Learn about several forms of sensitivity analyses: importance analysis, parametric analysis and comparison of decision alternatives. Here you’ll get your first taste of multi-dimensional arrays and array abstraction.

Chapters 1-3 of the Tutorial cover the core material that you’ll need if you are only interested in using a model that someone else has already built. If you plan on building models of your own, then you should continue through Tutorial Chapters 4-9 (there are no videos for these).

If you crave more videos like the above, here are a few more.

 

Browse the User Guide

Once you’ve finished the Tutorial, browse the Analytica User Guide. Although much of it is reference material, you’ll find lots of helpful nuggets in there. We especially recommend that you read Chapter 6 “Building Effective Models” and Chapter 7 “Creating Lucid Influence Diagrams”, as these will help you develop effective style and clean practices.

 

Explore example models

Some people find it helpful or inspiring to browse the example models. From Analytica, select File / Open, then press the “Analytica Example Models” button to get to the Example Models folder.

For even more example models, see Example Models on the Analytica Wiki.

 

Explore the Analytica Wiki

You should become very familiar with the Analytica Wiki. It is the central repository for Analytica modelers, and contains a lot of material. Make sure you check out these pages:

  • User Group Archives: 100 hours of recorded videos on dozens of different quantitative modeling topics.
  • Function category index:  There are hundreds of built-in as well as library functions in Analytica. This multi-level index is one of the best ways to find one that does what you are looking for.
  • Concept index: Numerous articles cover Analytica modeling concepts.
 

Build your own

… but start small and progressively refine.

As you start to build your own models, concentrate on getting something small working first. Don’t try to include every detail of your problem – get a simplified version of some part that you already understand pretty well working (i.e., computing results) first. Then progressively refine, adding in one additional detail at a time. Analytica is flexible – you don’t have to plan for everything up front.

 

Technical support

Questions and problems? Email support@lumina.com.

Lumina is known for the outstanding technical support it provides to its customers with Active Support. As a Free 101 user, you of course don’t have active support; nevertheless, we will attempt to help you out within reason and at our discretion.

 

Have fun

Many people tell us that they find model building in Analytica to be quite enjoyable and rewarding. Have a great experience with Analytica and we hope to hear similar reports from you soon!

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