David Hiebeler

Paper #: 94-11-065

Swarm is a simulation environment which facilitates development and experimentation with simulations involving a large number of agents behaving and interacting within a dynamic environment. Many of the computer simulations performed by researchers in various disciplines rest upon a very similar computational foundation. These researchers often invest significant effort into developing the basic platform to support their simulations. A prototype of the Swarm simulation system was developed as an attempt to provide a general-purpose tool for building these simulations. The Swarm system provides a framework that will allow people to only write code describing the details of their specific problem, and then gain easy access to user-interface, simulation management, and analysis tools. This paper will provide an overview of the Swarm system and discuss some of the general advantages and disadvantages of using individual-based models.