How Walmart Applies Data Science

How Walmart Applies Data Science

December 10, 2018

Data science is applied at Walmart Labs to sourcing, order/shipment preparation, transportation, last mile/routing/scheduling, and last mile order pick up. Applications include queuing and linear programming.

Check out this Medium article for an informative and high-level overview of how data science applications improve the efficiency and effectiveness of complex supply chain management at Walmart.

This post is based on the Medium article, Data Science in Walmart Supply Chain Technology, by Mingang Fu, November 1, 2018. Image source: Prasit photo/Getty Images.

Discussion Questions:

1. Describe how queuing theory is applied to Walmart’s supply chain management.

Guidance: Many students have not considered queuing applications beyond the typical retail service examples. Note that queuing theory is being applied by Walmart to solve last mile order pickup problems.  The instructor could illustrate queuing concepts and terms from the textbook by further discussing the queuing example provided in the article.

2. Describe the application of linear programming in Walmart’s transportation management.

Guidance: Students may not be familiar with more complex linear programming problems such as mixed integer applications.  The instructor may choose to introduce more advanced linear programming methods or simply illustrate with this article the utility of linear programming. Continue reading

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Taxis To Take Flight in 2024

Taxis To Take Flight in 2024

October 23, 2018

Transcend Air’s flying taxi will make the 1960’s Jetsons’ aircraft a reality by 2024.

Passengers of the six-seater vertical takeoff and landing vehicle can skip the airport, skip the lines, and travel for about the same price as a conventional commercial flight.  With a design that is quieter than a helicopter and can fly three times as fast, the taxi’s 400mph flight from Los Angeles to San Francisco would take only 55 minutes.


Video Spotlight: Manhattan – Boston, $283, 36 mins, No Airports = No Congestion


This post is based on the Travel and Leisure article, Flying Taxi Company Wants to Get You From New York City to Boston in 36 Minutes, by Talia Aviakan, October 2, 2018; the Mass Live post, Flying taxi to travel from Boston to New York in 36 minutes, by Michelle Williams, September 26, 2018; and the YouTube video, Manhattan – Boston, $283, 36 mins, No Airports = No Congestion, by Peter Schmidt, September 19, 2018. Image source: Fanatic Studio/Alamy.

Discussion Questions:

1. How is this new type of air transport more sustainable than traditional aircraft like planes or helicopters?

Guidance: The flying taxi uses propellers Continue reading

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