Simulation with Erlang

Vlad Dumitrescu <>
Thu Dec 14 12:13:50 CET 2000


There were very interesting suggestions. I will think about it some more. 
TimeWarp seems a bit too complicated, I'd like to try something simpler 
first.

I'd like to try to explain a little more what I am thinking about, and why 
use Erlang. Hopefully someone might become interested, and I'd get some 
help! :-)

Imagine a robotics application, where the robot is not an usual one, but 
composed out of many small identical blocks that can move on each other or 
be locked onto each other, and they can communicate with their neighbours. 
It's a kind of robotic amoeba :-) There are two kinds of software in the 
system: a local OS per block, and a (hopefully distributed) high-level 
control application.

Because of the distributed nature, I think Erlang would be a perfect 
platform. Since the cost of actually building this monster is prohibitive, 
it would be a good way to start with a simulation. And why not use Erlang 
for it too?

Luckily, there are a lot of things that can be simplified in a simulation 
(not the least, the communication because TCP/IP won't work and finding a 
new network protocol is a big issue in itself; or maybe Bluetooth could be a 
solution?). A GUI could show what's happening - and also serve as a perfect 
marketing tool.

That was a short description of my project. I've been thinking about it for 
a long time now, but there is very little work done. It's the fate of 
hoby-projects! :-)

If anyone has ideas or suggestions, they are welcome!
regards,
Vlad
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