Chapter 1

Concepts, Probabilities, Models, and Costs

Standing in line for some service is a universal human experience. We all have had the experience of choosing one line that appears to be moving the fastest only to observe later that an adjacent line is now moving faster. The reality is that all customers do not have the same service requirements, and even if they do, that service does not always take the same amount of time to complete.

Some of us are prepared to ask for what we need when we reach the server; others are still making up their minds as to exactly what they want. The process of paying for the service also adds to service time variability. How many of us have watched the person being served in front of us take a considerable ...

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