Art Rendezvous Science

UT Dallas ATEC/EMAC Research Colloquia Series

ARS Research Colloquia Series of the UT Dallas ATEC/EMAC Programs

Art Rendevous Science


DIVAs: A Framework for the Development of Agent-Based Simulation Systems

Dr. Rym Z. Wenkstern

Associate Professor

Department of Computer Science

Wednesday, October 16, 2013 at Noon

ATC 2.807

Abstract: Over the past several years researchers at the UTD MAVs lab have developed a framework for the development of large scale multi-agent based simulation systems. The framework called DIVAs (Dynamic Information Visualization of Agent systems) offers reusable architectures, abstract classes, software components and libraries that support the rapid development of enterprise-scale simulation systems. DIVAs is based on the premises that a) virtual agents are situated in an open (i.e., inaccessible, non-deterministic and dynamic) environment that is partially perceived and b) the environment is totally decoupled from the virtual agents.

In this talk I will give an overview of the DIVAs architecture and discuss how the framework was used to create an urban city and an office environment simulator. In both simulators, the environment is dynamic and non-deterministic. Virtual agents perceive their surroundings through vision, auditory and olfactory sensors. They execute complex path-finding and collision avoidance algorithms to move within the environment and deliberate to achieve their goals. The user of the simulator can modify agent and environment properties at run-time without interrupting the simulation.

Biography: Dr. Rym Zalila-Wenkstern is an Associate Professor at the Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, UTD. She holds a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Ottawa, Canada, and the Doctorat de Spécialité in Computer Science from the University of Tunis, Tunisia. Dr. Wenkstern is the director of the Multi-Agent and Visualization Systems lab. Her research projects are sponsored by several organizations including the National Science Foundation, Sandia National Laboratories, Rockwell Collins and the Department of Education. She is the author or co-author of more than 60 technical papers in the areas of multi-agent systems and software engineering. She served as general chair and program chair for the international conference in Software Engineering and Data Engineering and the IEEE African Conference on Software Engineering and Applied Computing.  She has worked as a consultant for U.S. and European organizations and is the CEO of ZW Corp, a startup specializing in the development of web-based multi-agent systems. Dr. Wenkstern’s work on the DIVAs project received the Best Paper Award at the Agent Directed-Simulation symposium in 2012, the Best Overall Paper Award at the Spring Simulation Multi-Conference in 2012, and the Best System/Demo Award at AAMAS, the leading international conference in multi-agent systems in 2013


This  ATEC ARS Colloquium Series features the research activities of ATEC EMAC faculty and of our collaborators in other schools of UT Dallas, in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. We also invite international visiting researchers and scholars

The ATEC/EMAC Colloquium Committee welcomes suggestions for speakers visiting the metroplex or from the metroplex. Please send your suggestions to one of the Colloquium Committee Members: Professors Roger Malina and Mihai Nadin; co-chairs: Members: Prof Rosanna Guadagno

Committee Members

Roger Malina

Associate Director of Arts and Technology

Mihal Nadin

Ashbel Smith Professor of Computer Science and Interactive Media

Rosanna Guadagno

Associate Professor

Lindsey Joyce

PhD student, Arts and Technology

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