MyDecision is a decision tool that allows you to quickly compare a number of choices based on any number of criteria and opinions with different weights, and produce comparison reports and charts that can help in the decision process. MyDecision can be used to compare almost anything, from gadgets to cars or houses, just by following these simple steps:
- Create a comparison project;
- Enter all criteria that will be used to compare your options;
- Enter all options being compared;
- Rate all options against each criterion;
- View the comparison results.
The following sections explain these steps in more detail.
If not in Projects screen already, tap the left arrow at the top of the current screen to get to the Projects screen. Then tap + to create a new project. Name it according to what you will compare, like "Phone", "Car" etc.
MyDecision includes some templates with criteria samples that you can use as a starting point for your project. To use a template, select it in the list located below the project name when creating a new project.
You can also tap and hold a project name and select Save as Template to create your own templates. Templates are stored in your device's storage under folder Android/data/com/acquasys/mydecision/files/templates.
You can later open an existing project from this same screen, just by selecting its name from the list. Tap and hold a project to rename, clone, export or remove it.
In MyDecision's main screen, choose the first tab to view the criteria list. To create a new criterion, tap + then enter the criterion name, its type and assign it an importance level (weight).
A criterion can have one of these types:
- "Info Only" - used only to display non-comparable specifications (facts) in the comparison report (ex. "brand name", "size" etc).
- "Stars" - represents generic and qualitative ratings (ex. "design", "battery duration").
- "Yes/No" - represents logical attributes (ex. "has bluetooth", "is certified").
- "Numeric" - represents numeric ratings ranging from 1 to 10.
- "Percent" - represents completeness, probabilities or risks (ex. "building status", "chance of deal", "possibility of failure").
You can mark a criterion as negative in order to make its rating count against the option's score in the final ranking. For example, you can choose to mark criterion "Price" as negative, since higher values will be considered worse than lower values in a price comparison.
If Auto rate based on fact values is checked, the app will try to calculate the appropriate ratings for all options according to their fact values.
For instance, let's suppose project "Phone" has a criterion "Battery" with type "Stars" and 3 options (Phone1, Phone2 and Phone3) with facts "3000mAh", "3500mAh" and "4000mAh" respectively. If auto-rating is enabled, the app will give 5 stars to Phone3 (as it has the highest value), 4 stars to Phone2 and 3 stars to Phone1.
Auto-rating also works for Yes/No criteria. If the fact is empty, "N" or "No" then it is assumed to be "No", otherwise it is assumed to be "Yes".
It is also possible to set a pre-condition to be checked against each option's fact values. For instance, if you set a pre-condition "Less than 50000" for criterion "Price", any option which have a value greater or equal to 50000 in field "Price" under section "Facts" will be discarded from the comparison.
Criteria can be optionally organized into categories so that the app can display their individual scores in the comparison report. For instance, you can have "Leather seats", "Steering Adjustment" and "Cruise Control" under category "Comfort", and see a score for "Comfort" in the report below the overall ranking. Categories can be created and edited by tapping button ... at the top right of the criteria list.
Note: You can add several criteria at once by tapping the ... button and selecting Add Multiple. In the following screen, enter one criteria per line (to skip to the next line, use the ENTER key). Optionally, you can also specify an importance for each criterion, adding a comma and a value from 1 to 5 after it. For example:
Although each criterion's weight can be set individually, MyDecision offers a tool that can facilitate this task.
Tapping .../Compare, you can compare criteria in pairs. For each criterion pair compared, the app can guess other combinations by transitivity, minimizing the comparison effort. For example, if criterion A is more important than criterion B, and criterion B is more important than C, you will not be asked to compare A and C, as the app understands that A is more important than C.
Choose the second tab to view the options list. To add a new option, tap + and enter the option details.
Besides the option name, you can also inform its cost (if you intend to use "Value for Money" rank mode - more on this later), and add external links (URLs) for reference purposes. You can add links manually or by keeping the option open in edit mode, switching to another app (browser, YouTube etc) and then sharing the link from there to MyDecision.
It is also possible to select an image to represent the option, using the little camera button at the top. You can select an existing image, take a picture or search for a suitable image on the web. In this last case, search results will open in the browser. Touch the desired image to expand it and tap and hold to share it, then select MyDecision in the list of apps to share to. Alternatively you can download the image to your phone and then open it from the app.
You can also enter facts (specifications) for each criterion, for reference or filtering (when criteria pre-conditions are used). Just select each item in the fact list and type its value in the input field below it. The search button at the right opens a search query in the browser, from where you can copy and paste the proper info.
Note: You can also add several options at once using .../Add Multiple. In the next screen, enter one option per line (to skip to the next line, use the ENTER key). For example:
In MyDecision, an opinion is a set of ratings given by a person. You can have multiple opinions considered in your analysis if you wish. Each new project has one opinion created by default. To add more opinions, go to the third tab in the main screen (Opinions), tap +, then enter the person's name and assign it an weight.
Note: You can also add several opinions at once using .../Opinions/Add Multiple. In the next screen, enter one name per line (to skip to the next line, use the ENTER key). Optionally, you can also specify the weight of each opinion, adding a comma and a value from 1 to 3 after it.For example:
After having entered all criteria, options and opinions, it's time to give your ratings. In the last tab, select an opinion and an option and assign the corresponding ratings (if there is only one opinion in the project, the opinion selector will not be shown). To rate a criterion, just touch it and set the desired value in the dialog shown. Repeat the process for all opinions and options available.
MyDecision offers two rating modes: you can select each option and rate how it performs for each criterion, or select a criterion and rate each option in relation to it. You can set your preferred method in program settings (option "Rating View"), and it is possible to change it on-the-fly using the first button in the top bar.
When all ratings are assigned, use Results button at the top to access the result screen. There you'll find two tabs where the comparison results are displayed: Report and Chart.
You can customize the report content in program settings. For example, it can contain the comparison ranking, option facts, detailed ratings per criterion, positive and negative highlights per option, and have a vertical or horizontal layout. The licensed version also allows sharing the report by e-mail or to any compatible app, print and save it in PDF format.
The comparison chart can be presented in three perspectives: Ranking, Criteria per Option or Options per Criterion. Use Chart button at the top to change the chart type.
Remember that only criteria/options/opinions that are enabled (checked) in the corresponding lists are considered in the comparison result.
As default, MyDecision ranks options according to the scores obtained from all ratings and weights. It is also possible to use an additional "Value for Money" mode (V/M), which takes into account not only the benefits each option offers, but which options offer more for their costs. This can offer more precise results in many cases when the price or budget has an important role in the decision.
To use this mode you must enable it in the app settings and provide the cost of all options being compared. If the cost is missing in any option, the app will revert to the normal score mode.
When "Value for Money" mode is active, a column named "V/M Ratio" is displayed instead of the normal "Score". This value reflects the ratio between total points and cost of each item (higher is better). An additional column named "Target Cost", displayed only in landscape orientation, shows what would be the maximum cost of each option in order to make it rank at the top position.
You can remove all limits for criteria, options and opinions from the free version and unlock additional features via an one-time in-app purchase (Menu/Purchase).