Queueing Primer

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By: Harry Perros

• Queueing theory deals with the analysis of queues (or waiting lines) where customers wait to receive a service.

• Queues abound in everyday life! – Supermarket checkout

– Traffic lights

– Waiting for the elevator

– Waiting at a gas station

– Waiting at passport control

– Waiting at a a doctor’s office

– Paperwork waiting at somebody’s office to be processed

• There are also queues that we cannot see (unless we use a software/hardware system), such as:

– Streaming a video: Video is delivered to the computer in the form of packets, which go through a number of routers. At each router they have to waiting to be transmitted out

– Web services: A request issued by a user has to be executed by various software components. At each component there is a queue of such requests.

– On hold at a call center

Link to material: http://www4.ncsu.edu/~hp/SSME_QueueingTheory.pdf

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