Extensions And Applications

There have been a large number of extensions to the basic ideas of PERT and CPM. These extensions are often oriented toward handling rather specific problem situa-* tions through additional program flexibility, computerizing some of the specific problems, fine-tuning some of the concepts for special environments, and combining various management approaches with the PERT/CPM concepts—for example, the TREND approach discussed in Chapter 5.

Another interesting extension deals with the case when it is very difficult to estimate activity times because no one has experience with the activity, or because the activity is ill-defined. In this case, the concepts of fuzzy-set theory are applied 134J. There are also opportunities for using simulation on stochastic PERT networks in order to make estimates of project finish time, as well as to examine the likelihood that noncritical paths have sufficient variance to become critical |51 ].

In this section we discuss some of these extensions and look at the utility of network scheduling models in general. However, we delay our coverage of extensions aimed primarily at resource allocation and formal applications of CPM until Chapter 9.

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