I wrote IRIS for a major world-wide distributor of perishable goods, in a project whose PI was my dissertation advisor, Mark Daskin, and coordinated by the Transportation Center at Northwestern University. It is a Windows-based program that plans daily vehicle routes for trucks delivering goods across the U.S. and Canada, within customer-specified time windows. Users input the customer orders for the day and IRIS plans efficient routes for trucks leaving a central depot. Solutions are evaluated based on multiple criteria, and the user may assign weights to the criteria to emphasize some more than others. Furthermore, the program generates multiple solutions as well as alternate solutions that answer what-if? scenarios like adding additional vehicles, dropping customers from the order list, and so on.

The program uses state-of-the-art heuristics to solve the problem, and it presents an intuitive, attractive front end to the user. The solver runs quickly and is intended to be run several times per day to re-compute the routing strategy as orders are received by the company’s sales staff. Results are presented in map and text form, and multiple solutions may be evaluated visually side-by-side using value path diagrams.

Screen Shot

Data input and set-up screens:

Map output:

Value path diagram:


THE AUTHOR OF THIS SOFTWARE MAKES NO CLAIMS, EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED, ABOUT THE PERFORMANCE OF THIS SOFTWARE, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE STABILITY OF THE SOFTWARE OR THE QUALITY OF THE SOLUTIONS IT RETURNS.  The author shall not be held liable for any damage or injury that results from the use of this software, including, but not limited to, damage to computer software or hardware.


IRIS is for Windows-based systems.

Current Version



Sorry, IRIS is not currently available for download.

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