Palo Alto Research Center

3333 Coyote Hill Road
Palo Alto, CA 94304 USA

ACH2.0.5 Download Page

Analysis of Competing Hypotheses (ACH)

Analysis of Competing Hypotheses (ACH) is a simple model for how to think about a complex problem when the available information is incomplete or ambiguous, as typically happens in intelligence analysis. The software downloadable here takes an analyst through a process for making a well-reasoned, analytical judgment. It is particularly useful for issues that require careful weighing of alternative explanations of what has happened, is happening, or is likely to happen in the future. It helps the analyst overcome, or at least minimize, some of the cognitive limitations that make prescient intelligence analysis so difficult. ACH is grounded in basic insights from cognitive psychology, decision analysis, and the scientific method. It helps analysts protect themselves from avoidable error, and improves their chances of making a correct judgment.

Install ACH Software

To install ACH, follow the instructions below or in the README file:
  1. To run ACH, you will need version 1.4.2 or later of Java. You can get it free from Sun here.

  2. Install the ACH program itself using one of the following:

** March 29, 2010 - Note that as of version 2.0.4, ACH is now able to run without administrator access.

About this Software

This software was developed by Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) in collaboration with Richards J. Heuer, Jr.It was developed for use by the U.S. Intelligence Community with funding from the Intelligence Community's Advanced Research and Development Activity (ARDA) and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

In distributing ACH, PARC is making the presently downloadable version of the program available to the general public at no cost when used for non-commercial or educational purposes subject to the terms and conditions of its end user license.

ACH is available under this license.

Point of contact

For general concerns about the ACH tool, please contact us at ACH-info@parc.com.

For support-specific issues, please use ACH-support@parc.com.

Third-party acknowledgements

Contains software copyrighted by Kai Toedter, jcalendar.jar, which use and distribution is subject to the LGPL License. A copy of the LGPL can be found in licenses/LGPL. A local copy of the source code is provided here.

Contains software copyrighted by David Gilbert and the Object Refinery, jfreechart-1.0.0-pre2.jar and jcommon-1.0.0-pre2.jar, which use and distribution is subject to the LGPL License. A copy of of the LGPL can be found in licenses/LGPL. A local copy of the source code is provided here and here.

Contains software copyrighted by Tim Eeckhaut, JFontChooser, which use and distribution is subject to the BSD License. A copy of the JFontChooser license can be found in licenses/JFontChooserLicence.txt

Contains software copyrighted by Jens Kaiser, the jprintpreview component, which use and distribution is subject to the LGPL. A copy of this license can be found in licenses/LGPL. A local copy of the source code is provided here.

Contains software copyrighted by Terence Parr, stringtemplate.jar, and antlr.jar which use and distribution is subject to the StringTemplate BSD License. A copy of this license can be found in licenses/StringTemplate.txt

Contains software copyrighted by the Apache Software Foundation, axis.jar, commons-discovery.jar, lucene-1.4.2.jar, and log4j.jar which use and distribution is subject to the Apache License 2.0, which is available in licenses/APACHE_2_0.txt

Contains software copyrighted by Sun Microsystems, jaxrpc.jar, javax.servlet.jar, and saaj.jar, which use and distribution is subject to the Sun Binary code license. A copy of this license can be found in licenses/SunBinaryCode.txt

Contains documentation copyrighted by Richards Heuer, Improving Intelligence Analysis and the ACH Tutorial, which use and distribution is subject to the MIT license. A copy of this license can be found in licenses/HeuerLicense.txt




Page Updated: Nov 9 2006, 2:20pm