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NetLogo: Design and Implementation of a Multi-Agent Modeling Environment

NetLogo: Design and Implementation of a Multi-Agent Modeling Environment

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NetLogo: Design and Implementation of a Multi-Agent Modeling Environment

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  1. NetLogo:Design and Implementationof a Multi-Agent Modeling Environment SwarmFest, May 11, 2004 Seth Tisue, lead developer Uri Wilensky, author and principal investigator Center for Connected Learning and Computer-Based Modeling Northwestern University

  2. Outline • Introduction to NetLogo (Wilensky, 1999):what’s our niche? • Current and future developments:growing that niche

  3. What is NetLogo? • A multi-agent programming language… • …and integrated modeling environment

  4. Audience and goal • Dual audience: research and education • Goal: “Low threshold, high ceiling”

  5. Why “low threshold” matters • Not just for teaching; researchers should care too • Rapid development, ease of experimentation and prototyping • Communication, sharing, verification • “Clear box” (aka “white box”)

  6. Achieving low threshold • Why a special language? • Leave out language complexity • Add language features that are specific to agent-based modeling • Why an integrated environment? • Reduce complexity of the software development process

  7. NetLogo facts • Cross-platform (written in Java) • Free download; no restrictions on use • 147 complete, documented sample models(and 83 user community models) • Under development since 1999 • Very active development:usually 2 or 3 releases per year • Large and active user community

  8. The NetLogo language • Logo core • Adds agents and concurrency • Successor to StarLisp, CM StarLogo, MacStarLogo, and StarLogoT; redesigned for both ease and power • Observer, patches, turtles (and breeds) • Agentsets • 2-D spatial relationships(distance, towards, etc.)

  9. More NetLogo features • Web delivery of models as applets • BehaviorSpace tool for parameter sweeping • HubNet, for participatory simulations (Wilensky & Stroup, 1999)

  10. What’s new?

  11. What’s new? Graphics • Faster, more flexible graphics • Turtle sizes • Exact turtle positions • Label agents with text • Smooth, flicker-free animation

  12. Graphics: Before

  13. Graphics: Before & after

  14. Graphics credit: Owen Densmore

  15. Graphics

  16. Graphics credit: James Steiner

  17. Graphics

  18. What’s new? Extensibility • Extensions API • Add new commands to language by implementing them in Java • Controlling API • “Script” NetLogo from Java, such as for doing batch runs

  19. What’s new? Extensibility • All-in-one = all-or-nothing? • Transition to a modular architecture • Bridging the gap between integrated environments and libraries

  20. What’s coming soon?

  21. Work in progress • World topologies • 3-D world, 3-D graphics

  22. Work in progress:Procedural Modeling of Cities • Now in first year of three-year NSF funded project • Two components: • Land use patterns (including streets & roads) • Building shapes

  23. credit:Tom Lechner Ben Watson Pin Ren Martin Felsen Uri Wilensky Seth Tisue

  24. Expected spin-offs for NetLogo • Large, complex, multi-leveled models • Speed • Pluggable visualization engines

  25. Ask me for copies • Tisue & Wilensky, “NetLogo: A Simple Environment for Modeling Complexity” [ICCS 2004] • Tisue & Wilensky, “NetLogo: Design and Implementation of a Multi-Agent Modeling Environment” [SwarmFest 2004] • Lechner, Watson, Felsen, Wilensky, Ren, Tisue, “Procedural Modeling of Land Use in Cities” [draft]

  26. Try it! • Explore our Models Library online • Download application (includes all models) http://ccl.northwestern.edu/netlogo/