Welcome to the Fall
2005 Issue of the GoldSim Newsletter!
The mission of
the GoldSim Technology Group is to provide state-of-the-art
software, training and expert consulting to help you understand
complex systems and make better decisions in an uncertain
world. Our GoldSim simulation software package provides the
power, flexibility and usability necessary to efficiently
simulate and understand the future behavior of complex systems
in business, engineering and science.
The purpose of the GoldSim Newsletter is to provide information
that helps you get the most out of GoldSim. Like you, we don't
like getting lots of unnecessary email in our Inbox, so we
only send out our newsletter if we have something useful to
communicate (usually 2 to 4 times per year). This issue of
the Newsletter focuses on the release of our new Reliability
Module, and also presents several other items of interest,
including an interesting application of GoldSim submitted
by one of our Research users, and news on what we are planning
for our next release.
Note that each Newsletter is archived
on our website so you can view old issues.
Since this newsletter is for you, we encourage you to send
us your comments and contributions. Send your contributions
GoldSim Technology Group
GoldSim Reliability Module Released!
Developed with partial funding from NASA, the GoldSim Reliability
(RL) Module is an add-on extension to the GoldSim simulation
framework that allows you to probabilistically simulate the
reliability and performance of complex engineered systems
over time. GoldSim provides the ability to model the interdependence
of components through requirements and fault trees, as well
as the capability to define multiple independent failure modes
for each component. This facilitates both reliability modeling
and risk analysis within a variety of industries, including
space and defense, manufacturing, mining, telecommunications,
electronics and infrastructure.
The Reliability Module Learning Edition is automatically
included with Version 9.1 of GoldSim. This includes all the
capabilities and features of the Reliability Module, but limits
the number of Reliability Module elements that can be added.
However, it provides all users with an opportunity to experiment
with this new module.
In addition to the Reliability Module, Version 9.1 also includes
a number of minor fixes and user-interface improvements.
All current members of the GoldSim
Subscription Program can download Version 9.1 now from
the GoldSim Resource Center (GRC). If you are not a current
member, but would like to test drive the Reliability Module,
an Evaluation version.
GoldSim Contributes Chapter to GIS Book Published by ESRI
The GoldSim Technology Group (GTG) contributed a chapter
to the book "GIS, Spatial Analysis, and Modeling"
published by ESRI Press and edited by David Maguire, Michael
Batty and Michael Goodchild. The book is concerned with modeling
and spatial analysis within a GIS (geographic information
system) framework and takes a pragmatic, software-centric
view of the tools, techniques, methods and models currently
available to geographic analysts, modelers, software engineers
and GIS professionals. The book is a direct outcome of a workshop
held by ESRI in late 2003 that assembled a small expert group
with hands-on experience of modeling within, and linking to,
commercial GIS software.
The chapter that GTG contributed to the book, "Linking
General-Purpose Dynamic Simulation Models with GIS" describes
different classes of dynamic GIS models and discusses two
alternative conceptual approaches for linking general-purpose
dynamic simulation models with GIS. As part of this discussion,
the prototype to link GoldSim to GIS is briefly described.
The chapter closes by describing some of the technical issues
involved in creating a robust system that would provide the
simulation model/GIS linkage.
FEATURED GOLDSIM APPLICATION
Simulation of Animal Nutrition Using GoldSim
In this featured example, Dr. David Pachero of the AgResearch
Ltd. Grasslands Research Centre in New Zealand illustrates
how he is using GoldSim in animal nutrition research. In New
Zealand, the dairy industry relies heavily on the ability
of dairy cows to utilise forages as their main dietary staple.
In grazing systems, the quality of the pasture is an ever-changing
playing field: weather, forage variety, level of fertilisation,
and age of the plant are some of many factors influencing
the quality of the cows' diet. The chemical composition of
the forage, and hence its nutritive value, change from season
to season, from paddock to paddock, from day to day and even
within the same day! Dr. Pacheco used GoldSim to simulate
changes in the chemical composition of pasture and its effects
on dairy cows.
Here are some of the things that we are working on for our
next version (code named Glacier), which we are hoping to
released in January 2006:
Stochastic Optimization. The Optimization capability
introduced in Version 9 will be enhanced to allow you
to optimize uncertain systems. It's going to take some
time to run these analyses, but you will be able to address
problems such as "Adjust my pricing scheme so as
to maximize my expected profits, while having no more
than a 10% chance of going broke".
Two-Dimensional Monte Carlo. We're adding a capability
for you to embed one GoldSim model inside another. This
should be particularly useful for cases where you need
to separate the effects of uncertainty from randomness/variability.
You will be able to have an outer Monte Carlo model that
samples the uncertain parameters, and an inner model that
simulates system performance subject to random effects.
As always, we encourage our users to send their requests
and suggestions for improvements to GoldSim. If you have a
specific request, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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