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ntegration of Collaborative Computing with Modelling and Simulation Technologies

distributed based systems scientific

Definition: The blending of collaborative computing together with modeling and simulation (M&S) technologies continues to gain popularity amongst the wide range of distributed work teams that routinely utilize M&S in the course of their work.

With examples ranging from the traditional scientific and engineering communities to business process and management domains, this context of collaborative computing addresses a very broad basis for “working together” ranging from the use of shared workspaces and participant awareness/interaction via conferencing to the use of distributed modeling and development environments.

Traditionally, M&S technologies have been extremely popular in scientific research, military and defense arenas, systems design and engineering. When compared to standalone systems and practices, M&S executed in a collaborative manner offers the benefits and challenges of participating in a distributed system – specifically the availability of additional resources. The result is typically an increased simulation capability along with more productive and richer discovery and evaluatory processes.

Depending on the audience, collaboration can be applied at different levels in relation to the simulation activity. For example, collaboration could involve use of distributed simulation tools (such as HLA or DIS-based simulators) or it could involve the use of “facilitation-type tools” to augment the communication and interaction between collaborating teams. While not mutually exclusive, and in fact mutually beneficial, the choice of approach is often organizationally inclined; for example, scientists may not have the same fondness for teleconferencing as business process modelers. Successful collaborative M&S experiences are therefore often studied and evaluated in a case-specific manner.

Current trends in this area relate to portal-based access to simulations, collaborative tools and shared work spaces, visual development, and grid-based computing initiatives.

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