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Bug 72994 - Make the same logic for Goal Seek and Solver tools from end-user perspective
Summary: Make the same logic for Goal Seek and Solver tools from end-user perspective
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Calc (show other bugs)
(earliest affected) release
Hardware: Other All
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
Depends on:
Blocks: GoalSeek Solver
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2013-12-23 18:54 UTC by grofaty
Modified: 2020-11-24 07:30 UTC (History)
0 users

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:

solver_vs_goal_seek.png (128.46 KB, image/png)
2013-12-23 18:54 UTC, grofaty
suggestions.png (86.77 KB, image/png)
2013-12-23 18:54 UTC, grofaty

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Description grofaty 2013-12-23 18:54:21 UTC
Created attachment 91159 [details]

Using LibreOffice Calc on Windows XP.

I am looking at how Goal Seek and Solver are operating from end-user perspective and it looks like this two tools have separate logic, but from end-user perspective Solver is "Goal Seek advance tool" or "Goal Seek on steroids". I know there are two different tools, but I as end-user would expect them to work according to the same logic. So using this two tools should be way more simpler = similar.

I like the idea how Solver is working and I would suggest to do the same logic for Goal Seek.

*** SOLVER ***
Very simple sample:
1. In cell A1 type in: 100
2. In cell A2 type in formula: =A1*10
3. Tools | Solver.
a) Target cell: $A$2
b) Optimize result to Value of: 2000
c) By changing cells: $A$1
d) Options button. Solver engine: "LibreOffice Linear Solver" and OK button to return to previous dialog.
e) Click on Solve button. Dialog "Solving Result" is opened. Values in sheet has CHANGED! and dialog asking if "Keep Result" or "Restore Previous" buttons.
If "Keep Result" is clicked then the solving result is preserved (applied to sheet) and if "Restore Previous" it restores values to values before using Solver.

So logic behind Solver is to ACCEPT new values automatically.

*** GOAL SEEK ***
Very simple sample:
Repeat steps 1 and 2 from "Solver" section above.
3. Tools | Goal Seek.
a) Formula cell: $A$2
b) Target value: 2000
c) Variable cell: $A$1
5. OK button.
6. New dialog with "Yes/No" question.

Sheet is not updated automatically.

See solver_vs_goal_seek.png attachment for details of current user interface state.

I love the 'Solver' logic, so Solver is OK. All the changes go to Tools | Goal Seek. Bellow are suggestions how to make Goal Seek as similar to Solver as possible, to remove confusion in end-user eyes and to easily switch from one tool to another.
1. In Goal Seek remove "Default Settings" label, because it is useless (Solver does not have this kind of label).
2. Change "Formula cell" label to "Target cell" (the same label as Solver has).
3. Change "Target value" label to "Value of" (the same label as Solver has).
4. Change "Variable Cell" label to "By changing cell" (cell = singular, not cells as in Solver - Solver has option to have multiple cells selection).
5. Change "OK" button label to "Seek" (the same logic as Solver has).
6. Add "Advance Options (Solver) plus button at the bottom. When clicked the Goal Seek dialog closes and Solver dialog opens (if some values where entered in Goal Seek dialog then it should preserve in Solver dialog). Because Goal Seek in my end-user eyes is Solver's small brother, so changing to big brother should be easy.
7. When clicking on Seek button and solution is provided, instead of current Yes/No button create the same logic dialog as in Solver - the only change from Solver is to add "'Seeking' successfully finished." instead of "'Solving' successfully finished."
8. When "Seeking successfully finished" dialog opens then AUTOMATICALLY update sheet with new values and make it possible for user to "Restore Previous" state.

See Suggestions.png file for details.

Hope to see Goal Seek user interface logic little bit closer to Solver tool, because Goal Seek is small brother of Solver tool.
Comment 1 grofaty 2013-12-23 18:54:47 UTC
Created attachment 91160 [details]
Comment 2 Owen Genat (retired) 2014-06-28 07:29:57 UTC
I would generally agree with this proposal. The two related help pages indicate:

> ... solve an equation with a variable.

> ... solve equations with multiple unknown variables by goal seeking methods.

The Calc 4.1 User Guide pp.265-266 further supports this:

> ... using Tools > Goal Seek you can discover what values will produce 
> the result that you want. (p.265)

> Tools > Solver amounts to a more elaborate form of Goal Seek. The 
> difference is that the Solver deals with equations with multiple 
> unknown variables. (p.266)

Consistent language / terminology across dialogs would help make this clearer to the end user. Status set to NEW.
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The Goal seek and solver operation is the common one in the LibreOffice. You need to go on formulas and then you should go at seek formula, here you have to input the condition which you want to know and then submit it. For example if you want to run the domain as and you don't know what time it takes to get an order from this website then you can apply these all conditions in LibreOffice and then it will help you to calculate it by using its algorithm.
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