Elegant Solutions to Complex Problems.

Some people see only the problem - we see the way to take it apart and solve it. Ploughman Analytics works with clients to select the right methods for the task at hand.

The key to our success - ultimately your success - is that we are very good at lending structure to unstructured problems, then decomposing the problem into parts that are amenable to solution by existing methods. And we always keep our eyes open for the most elegant solution of all - the recognition that there actually is not a problem to be solved.

Sometimes the answer is not the development of an information system or the deployment of an analytical technique, but a change in business processes or the use of information that already exists inside an organization or is readily available outside the organization.

Let’s say you have been tasked with selecting a location for a major agriculture or energy processing facility. You are a superb practitioner in the arts of designing facilities and operating them profitably. You may also have great intuition about location, and awareness of regulatory, permitting, political, or strategic issues that influence site selection.

Ploughman Analytics brings strength to your team by systematically processing information to rapidly inform decisions. In the above example, you would draw on our proficiency with geospatial information processing tools to execute fundamental analyses in a single morning, resulting in a superior decision delivered and at a vastly lower cost in a fraction of the time.

We provide clients with methods to incorporate new information that becomes available during the process of making these high-stakes decisions. When new methods emerge, we exercise good judgment about their use by asking critical questions: Are the methods really new, or are they classic methods rediscovered or repackaged? Are there classic methods that are better fits for the problem at hand or would a combination of new and trusted techniques be in your best interest?

We see small problems where others see large ones, and think through your problems.


Dr. Charles Linville founded Ploughman Analytics and served as its president for nearly 15 years, establishing and molding Ploughman’s vision. During his 20 years of work in the computer industry, he saw a growing need for more advanced methods of retrieving and analyzing business data. He founded Ploughman Analytics to offer intelligence tools and services that help clients make better business decisions.

Dr. Linville held positions with International Business Machines, the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network, American University, Archer Daniels Midland, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He taught in university departments of computer science and information systems, environmental studies and public administration, and presented at the National Academy of Sciences, Harvard University, and Johns Hopkins University, among others.

Today, Ploughman Analytics continues to serve clients building on the groundwork laid by Dr. Linville.