DESDEO: Decision Support for Computationally Demanding Optimization Problems

DESDEO is an open source framework for interactive multiobjective optimization methods. DESDEO contains implementations of some interactive methods and modules that can be utilized to implement further methods.

In multiobjective optimization, several conflicting objective functions are to be optimized simultaneously. Because of the conflicting nature of the objectives, it is not possible to obtain individual optima of the objectives simulatneously but one must trade-off between the objectives. Interactive methods are iterative by nature where a decision maker (who has substance knowledge) can direct the solution process with one's preference information to find the most preferred balance between the objectives. In interactive methods, the amount of information to be considered at a time is limited and, thus, the cognitive load set on the decision maker is not too demanding. Furthermore, the decision maker learns about the interdependencies among the objectives and also the feasibility of one's preferences.

The mission of DESDEO is to increase awarenss of the benefits of interactive methods make interactive methods more easily available and applicable. Thanks to the open architecture, interactive methods are easier to be utilized and further developed. The framework consists of reusable components that can be utilized for implementing new methods or modifying the existing methods. The framework is released under a permissive open source license.

The interactive methods currently implemented in DESDEO are the synchronous NIMBUS method

  • Miettinen, K., Makela, M.M., Synchronous Approach in Interactive Multiobjective Optimization, European Journal of Operational Research, 170(3), 909-922, 2006
and different variants of the NAUTILUS family
  • Miettinen, K., Ruiz, F., NAUTILUS Framework: Towards Trade-off-Free Interaction in Multiobjective Optimization, Journal of Business Economics, 86(1), 5-21, 2016
  • Ruiz, A. B., Sindhya, K., Miettinen, K., Ruiz, F., Luque, M., E-NAUTILUS: A Decision Support System for Complex Multiobjective Optimization Problems based on the NAUTILUS Method, European Journal of Operational Research, 246, 218-231, 2015
  • Miettinen, K., Podkopaev, D., Ruiz, F., Luque, M., A New Preference Handling Technique for Interactive Multiobjective Optimization without Trading-off, Journal of Global Optimization, 63(4), 633-652, 2015
  • Miettinen, K., Eskelinen, P., Ruiz, F., Luque, M., NAUTILUS Method: An Interactive Technique in Multiobjective Optimization based on the Nadir Point, European Journal of Operational Research, 206(2), 426-434, 2010.

At the top of this page, you see a link to the source codes of DESDEO and a video that demonstrates how the new NAUTILUS Navigator method can be used.

DESDEO is also a research project funded by the Academy of Finland (grant number 287496). The project lasts for four years (August 2015 - August 2019). The project aims to bring interactive methods closer to researchers and practitioners world-wide, by providing them with implementations of interactive optimization methods. The main results of the DESDEO project are published as the DESDEO open source optimization framework with implementations of the new methods developed during the project, of implementations of methods developed earlier as well as connections to different simulation and problem modeling tools.

Main research areas

  • Interactive decision support for complex problems
  • Surrogate assisted multi/many-objective optimization for computationally expensive problems