Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The RedfishGroup

RedfishGroup is an organization of complexity researchers, software developers and business professionals applying Complex Adaptive Systems to business and government agencies. What is really amazing about the group is their approach to modelling, combing ABM to other techniques such as GIS and producing highly visual and informative models.

Santa Fe on Fire:

Santa Fe on Fire: Agent-based modelling of wildfire evacuation dynamics was presented by Stephen Guerin at Agent 2006. The project for the City of Santa Fire Department integrating wildfire simulation and ABM of traffic dynamics. ArcGIS was used for preparing the data sources, NetLogo was used for prototyping the wildfire models and the network-based traffic models along with using FARSITE and Blender3D for further model development. Results from the model where outputted to Google Earth and QuickTime.

Pittsburgh PNC Baseball Stadium

The Pittsburgh project explored Crowd Dynamics with an Agent-Based Model, and used to study evacuation from the Baseball Stadium. For example modelling the emergency scenario involving a bomb exploding in seats and subsequent disaster scenes that the explosion triggered inside and outside the ballpark.

The projects listed also have the added advantage of sharing their source code, which I personally believe is really great, as it allows others to learn. The ability to carry out ABM in a highly visual and interactive manor allows the modellers to communicate ideas and theory to the public. For example in the case of Santa Fe on Fire, the visualisations evacuation dynamics were used to communicate with citizens dangers faced during evacuations and to explore when shelter-in-place is a reasonable alternative to evacuation.

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