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Complexity Metrics for Directional Node-Link System Representations: Theory and Applications

[+] Author Affiliations
James L. Mathieson, Joshua D. Summers

Clemson University, Clemson, SC

Paper No. DETC2010-28561, pp. 13-24; 12 pages
  • ASME 2010 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 5: 22nd International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology; Special Conference on Mechanical Vibration and Noise
  • Montreal, Quebec, Canada, August 15–18, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4413-7 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3881-5
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME


This paper presents an approach to defining and quantifying the complexity of systems as represented in mixed (directed and non-directed) bipartite graphs through the presentation of a central example as well as other applications. The approach presented defines nine measurements of different properties of the graph system. These measurements are derived from the representation of the system into a three dimension relational design structure matrix as well as the projections and transformations of this matrix. The metrics generated address dimensional and connective size, shortest path properties, and the decomposability of the system. Finally, a normalization and aggregate approach of these metrics is then given. This aggregation is visualized with spider graphs that facilitate viewing multiple aspects of complexity within a single perspective.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME



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