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Predictive Software for Forecasting

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 5:49 pm
by brandonreed08
I recently looking into predictive software for a business venture and was pleasantly surprised by the sophisticated software applications that are currently available. This software would be ineffective at the ward level and possible at the Stake level due to the data needs, but at the regional or at church headquarters it would be quite useful. This software basically uses statistical analysis to help forecast trends, what factors influenced those trends on a statistically significant level, and how those factors influenced those trends (e.g. +3.5, -9.8).

An example for what this could be used for is missionary work. Lets say the church has this software, it plugs in all the available data it has on the members, missionaries, investigators, national GDP's; basically all the available data that might influence missionary work. The software through neural network analysis is able to forecast the trend for conversions and able to identify the data categories that were statistically relevant to the conversion trend. Gas prices could turn out to be relevant because when the prices increased missionaries could not drive as far to visit investigators. The software is fairly powerful, but since it is still fairly technical the church would need someone with a statistics or actuarial background to run it.

The software can get expensive but it cost less than building a temple, but might help to double temple attendance so I think it would be a worthwhile investment. There are also less sophisticated ones out there that are applets to other programs, like excel.

I would really love to see the church adopt this type of technology. They may already use it, but if not they will likely in the future. But the sooner the better.

Re: Predictive Software for Forecasting

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:38 pm
by moonman239
Pardon me for asking perhaps a dumb question, but isn't it hard to measure the impact of an independent variable on a dependent variable when the independent variable is pretty volatile?

Re: Predictive Software for Forecasting

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 3:14 pm
by johnshaw
I imagine ginormous amounts of data/calculations were undertaken during the process of lowering the Mission serving ages.

Re: Predictive Software for Forecasting

Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 2:04 am
by russellhltn
JohnShaw wrote:I imagine ginormous amounts of data/calculations were undertaken during the process of lowering the Mission serving ages.


I'm not so sure. I forget the detail but I heard that it came as a complete surprise. I'm under the impresson it was a revalation that came out of the blue.