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NeuralTools® Is Released After Enthusiastic Response to Beta

12 December 2005, Ithaca, NY -
Palisade Corporation announces the release today of NeuralTools®, its new neural networks add-in for Microsoft Excel that features the innovative Live Prediction function. Neural networks are a rapidly expanding approach to data analysis and prediction, but one that has been implemented primarily by analysts with an advanced understanding of data analysis and artificial intelligence. Now—coming on the heels of a very successful beta test program—NeuralTools offers the power of sophisticated analysis, as well as instant updating with Palisade’s proprietary Live Prediction, to the everyday spreadsheet user.

Real-World Applications
The use of neural networks spans a variety of industry sectors as wide as the use of Excel—from banking to biology, defense to finance, and medicine to manufacturing. Designed for the many nonspecialists in all enterprises who want access to neural networks technology, NeuralTools will find innumerable applications, including loan underwriting, credit card fraud detection, airline security analysis, medical diagnoses, financial investment prediction, and many more.

NeuralTools uses advanced statistical analysis techniques to reveal the structure of a data set. It “learns” existing data and then uses the knowledge and patterns it discovers to make predictions from new, unanalyzed data. All this happens “behind the scenes,” so the user need not be involved in setting the parameters of each algorithm. The software can perform both numeric and categorical prediction.

Why Live Prediction Is So Powerful
Live Prediction is the feature that makes NeuralTools a standout among all neural networks software. When new data are entered into an analysis, Live Prediction updates predictions instantly. This is a time-saver and is particularly valuable when combined with Excel’s Solver add-in or other optimization software such as Palisade’s Evolver™. Using Solver or Evolver, users can set a desired target prediction—for example, timely repayments of a bank loan with 90 percent certainty. The optimizer can vary input variables such as loan amount as NeuralTools continually updates its repayment predictions. Users can set the optimizer to continually change the model until the desired prediction is achieved.

NeuralTools Finds Immediate Use
NeuralTools has been subjected to intensive beta testing by a broad group of spreadsheet users. More than 2,000 Palisade customers previewed NeuralTools. Many of them responded to the beta by using it to resolve some of the immediate questions facing them in their work, and they sent unsolicited praise to the developers at Palisade.

“So far I have been very happy with this new product,” wrote Michael Cochrane, research engineer for the U.S. Army. “It is certainly easy to use and data preparation for training and testing is straightforward because of the Excel environment. I particularly like the Live Prediction feature.”

Healthcare industry consultant Barbara Tawney noted, “Most folks in the medical community are not engineers, but they can use NeuralTools to facilitate their own forecasts of future admissions, current occupancy, and discharges using existing patient billing data.” Ms. Tawney is the principal investigator in a four-year study of patient load throughout the entire metropolitan hospital system of Richmond, Virginia. Although she is a sophisticated analyst who often writes her own analytic software, she found great value in NeuralTools’ ease of use. “To bring this kind of forecasting to non-engineer managers is just awesome!”

In Stuttgart, Germany, Dr. Jose R. Iglesias-Rozas of the Institut für Pathologie, Katharinenhospital put NeuralTools to work diagnosing brain tumors. According to Dr. Iglesias-Rozas, “I am delighted with the program for its speed and easy handling. I was very happy to work with numeric and category variables. The program is super quick.”

Available in Two Editions
NeuralTools is offered in a Standard Edition at $495 and a Professional Edition at $795. Prices include one year of maintenance. Corporate and academic licenses are also available.

For complete product specifications and pricing details, click here.


For more information, contact:

Randy Heffernan
Tel: 607-277-8000
Fax: 607-277-8001
Palisade Corporation
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Ithaca, NY 14850-3239
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