What’s Your Flavour of Scheduling ?

Scheduling has many names and terms of reference; often having starting points with Calendars and date pickers and quickly advancing to Day Minders, Rosters, Appointment scheduling to Enterprise Resource Planning and production scheduling.

Each has its own characteristics for presenting a type of appointment, task … in general terms a commitment that has a specific start time and an end time and usually presented along a timescale. The orientation of the timescale will imply a type of scheduling  – for instance, a vertical timescale is often viewed as appointment scheduling similar to a day timer or Outlook style of scheduling. In contrast, a horizontal timescale will imply resource planning, project management or resource scheduling. 

The complexities of scheduling have not diminished – if at all, scheduling has become even more complicated as we account for organizations with operations around the world accommodating a more sophisticated work force and advanced customer.

Taking these aspects in account, DBI has evolved its core set of components allowing developers to effectively manage the global nature of business and life today including the growing complexities of scheduling.  To the point, where today we look at managing many to many relationships that are associated with arranging appointments with resources from around the world.  A good example might be a video conference call, where resources from around the world are scheduled.


Egyptians, Scholars, Henry Gantt, Kelly and Walker

It’s surmised that scheduling dates back 3000 years to ancient Egyptian times and the 

construction of the Pyramids. Although empirical records are not available to prove otherwise,
it’s reasonable to believe this to be true. Especially when one considers the marble
infrastructure that was built to support the Pharaohs tombs. The years it took to build the
marble beams and the the planning to move and place such weight, all to dovetail with the
balance of construction.

Fast forward to an era around mid to late 1700 and a couple of scholars, theologians, chemists
and the like … who upon their many musings and search for understanding are believed to be
the creators of the first bar charts and histograms, which they used to present chronologies.
(Priestly and Playfair) Leading the way to the early 1900’s and Henry Gantt who used his
visual charting technique for machine shop production (sound familiar) and not for project
management as one might have thought.

Critical path analysis and the finer development of algorithms started to appear around the
1950’s when Kelly and Walker were developing scheduling methodologies at DuPont. The aid of
computing technology coming right around the corner helped fast track (in context of the early
Egyptians) and further the specialization of the developed and developing theories, algorithms
and structures – the basis of today’s scheduling sciences.

How far we have come and will travel in the very near future.