In 1973, a project was initiated at Standard Oil of Indiana to investigate future petrochemical raw stock pricing trends. Although large in scope, the project was simple in concept: a mathematical programming model of the domestic refining industry would be subjected to projected future demand patterns for the basic olefinic and aromatic petrochemical intermediates, and the results would be used to predict industry pricing trends. In keeping with the title of this session, I am going to concentrate on the tools used for this study, rather than the study itself or its results. In fact, I could not discuss the results with you, even if I wanted to, because in the first place they are confidential and proprietary to Standard of Indiana and, in the second place, I don't know them. I guess this puts me somewhat in the position of the man who was hauled into court for returning his neighbor's lawnmower in damaged condition. In his defense, he pleaded that "in the first place, I never borrowed his lawnmower, and, in the second place, it was already busted when I picked it up, and, in the third place, it was running fine when I gave it back to him."
ACM SIGMAP Bulletin – Association for Computing Machinery
Published: Dec 1, 1977