FAQ about GUM Workbench

Jens Bo Toftegaard

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FAQ about GUM Workbench

Frequently asked question about GUM Workbench

Q: Does GUM Workbench require that I have specialised software or a spreadsheet package installed on my computer ?

A: No. GUM Workbench is 100% stand-alone software. All required is the Windows operating system.

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Q: Has GUM Workbench been validated ?

A: Yes. Please refer to a discussion on validation by using this link. Moreover, a validation report from Danish Technological Institute, based on test data taken from an official European Accreditation document is available upon request.

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Q: Can your software help us to implement the PUMA-method ?

A: Yes. The PUMA-method is described in ISO/DTR 14253-2. GUM Workbench supports the principles. It will become quicker and easier for you to try out different uncertaintymodels. When you work in software, you will find it easy to copy any uncertainty analysis, do your iterations and note you comments and changes in the analysis description field.

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Q: Can I use the "fifty-fifty"– technique in my evaluation of an uncertainty component ?

A: Yes. The documentation for GUM Workbench tells you how to implement this when dealing with the useful fifty-fifty trick. Also you will find details on the technique in the GUM method clauses 4.3.5 and 4.3.6.

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Q: We have been told, that the PUMA–method (ISO/DTR 14253-2 ) does not use the full GUM-method. Does that mean we cannot use your software for the PUMA-method ?

A: No. We agree,that the PUMA–document is built around several examples demonstrating how to write valid uncertainty budgets without dealing with the more sophisticated mathematics of the GUM method.

Writing up a proper model equation, e.g. is avoided by the examples given in ISO/DTR 14253-2.

But with GUM Workbench you may use the highly recommendable iterative approch to uncertainty budgeting and the full GUM method may be applied without having to make special assumptions or simplifications. Using GUM-method, simplifying calculations becomes second priority, since it is so easy to implement the correct methods.

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Q: What is EA-4/02?

A: What you are referring to is a document issued by EA, European co-operation for Accreditation. Its title is "Expressions of the Uncertainty of Measurements in Calibration.

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Q: Is it correct that GUM Workbench can handle all requirements in document EA-4/02, and that check calculations have been carried out to ensure compatibility with all authorized examples published in conjunction with EA-4/02?

A: Yes. Our software is completely compatible with EA-4/02. The examples you have heard about must be those twelve examples which are elaborated in great detail in the supplement 2 of EA-4/02. Analysis of these examples was part of our validation of GUM Workbench, and full agreement was found.

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Q: Does GUM Workbench allow for automatic data acquisition ?

A: Yes. We recommend using GUM Workbench together with the 'SoftwareWedge' serial data collection software products from TAL Technologies. All our tests have been succesful and data can be entered directly into any of the input fields of GUM Workbench. For some measurements, this is a great time saver when filling in an extended type A data table.

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Q: Does GUM Workbench run under the Macintosh operating system ?

A: We have tested using the emulator "Virtual PC" in the Windows 2000 edition. GUM Workbench 1.3 and 2.3 both runs flawlessly.

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Q: Can one have several files open simultaneously and cut and copy from one uncertainty budget to another?

A: Yes. As many as four uncertainty files may be open at at the same time. When shifting between uncertainty budgets you are automatically protected against loss of data. This means that the softwre promts for a save command if the uncertainty budget was changed. You may check the status field in the right bottom corner of the Workbench-screen to see if a budget was changed.

Cut, copy or paste commands are found under the edit-menu.

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Q: I get languages mixed up in my reports. How to avoid this?

A: GUM Workbench handles its report format in a number of different languages. To change the set language, use the Config.. menu under Options.

Note, that there are separate fields for setting report language. Use the second field from the bottom to set the language used for on-screen display and printing of reports. The language field at the bottom controls the export-feature. (Used for transferring an uncertainty analysis to another application e.g. a text editor.).

Back to your question: There is no real possibility to mix the languages used by GUM Workbench. But you must realise that the remarks and comment you or another user have entered will remain in the language they were entered in.

Only standard headings, labels and the like are controlled by the Config.. dialog box

User defined text will have to be translated in traditional way.

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Q: Does the software have mechanisms for securing against loss of data?

A: Yes. Each use of the Save command leads to a save. But a simultaneous write of a safety back-up copy of the uncertainty file is automatically initiated by the program. If a previous back-up copy exists it will be automatically overwritten.

The safety copy is placed in the same directory as the uncertainty file proper. It is assigned the suffix .bak. If e.g. the uncertainty file is named ANALYS7.SMU, the automatic safety file will be named ANALYS7.BAK.

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