Linear Programming Methods

Linear Programming Methods

Linear Programming Methods

Linear Programming Methods

Excerpt

Linear programming promises to become an empirical technique as widely used by economists as conventional statistical methods. Unfortunately, however, most of the literature on programming is in abstract terms, not easily understood by the mass of persons who work with applied problems and have use for the tool. Too, previous literature has not treated in detail the special considerations, short cuts and techniques which are needed or can be used in agricultural applications of programming.

This book has been written to serve the needs of students, teachers, research workers and extension specialists in economics. Its purpose is to place the general tool of activity analysis in the hands of individuals who are not primarily mathematicians, or who are not primarily concerned with complicated mathematics.

The techniques of linear programming are explained in a manner which can be understood by advanced undergraduates, beginning graduate students and established economists who have no knowledge of matrix algebra. The only prerequisite for understanding the basic materials which follow is ability in arithmetic and knowledge of elementary economic terms.

The first 10 chapters provide an understanding of programming techniques for persons who have no interest in the basic algebra underlying programming techniques. These chapters provide the knowledge for solving most of the practical problems which arise in agriculture and other industries. Chapters 1-4 present the basic concepts and computational procedures for solving conventional problems. Chapters 5-8 provide information on use of short cuts, setting up problems for programming and the application of techniques for variable resource supplies and prices.

The appendix to Chapter 2 is provided for persons who have not had previous occasion to become acquainted with the meaning of subscripts and other necessary notations. The appendix to Chapter 3 contains an empirical explanation and illustration of the dual. It is presented at that point because it is appropriately associated with the conventional programming problem of maximizing an objective. However, most readers may find this appendix somewhat more advanced than following chapters. Hence, the appendix to Chapter 3 may be skipped until after . . .

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