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ActivityNetwork Namespace

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Defines classes needed for an activity network, which is a graph of events linked by tasks.

A typical graph ( GGraph.TGCustomGraph component) implements an Activity On Vertex (AOV) network where the vertices or nodes represent tasks and the edges represent precedence relations between the tasks. With these type of activity networks, you can generate topological ordering of tasks within the network. The ActivityNetwork unit provides classes that extend the GGraph.TGGraph component for a weighted, directed graph to implement Activity On Edge (AOE) networks ( ActivityNetwork.TActivityNetwork component). An AOE network is a activity network or graph where the tasks to be performed on a project are represented by directed edges and the vertices or nodes represent events (completion of some activity). Therefore, activities represented by edges cannot be started (leave the node) until the event at that node has completed. Activities that start from the same event can be executed in parallel. The Weight of an edge usually represents an estimate of how long that activity will take to complete.

Activity On Edge networks are a useful representation for a project because they allow performance evaluations for the project. With these networks, you can answer such questions as: What is the minimum amount of time the entire project could be completed in? Which activities need to be speeded up in order to reduce completion time? etc.

The TActivityNetwork component, along with its TAOETask edge and TAOEEvent node, allow the representation of activity on edge networks and provide powerful algorithms for processing these networks. With this component, you can determine the earliest possible start time for a task, the latest possible start time for a task that can occur without lengthening the total project time, earliest and latest possible event times, and critical paths. A critical path is the longest path through the network, i.e., the critical path represents the path that controls the minimum project completion time. Finally, the component can calculate the criticality of each task; every task whose earliest start time equals its latest start time are called critical activities. The criticality of a task is the difference between the latest and earliest start time and gives the time by which an activity may be delayed or slowed without increasing the total time to finish the project. All tasks on a critical path are critical and speeding up noncritical tasks will not reduce the project completion time.

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