F1. What are the goals of the Facsimile project?
In short, to be the best simulation/emulation tool there is.
The Facsimile project currently has the following goals:
- A free, open-source simulation library/framework. Free software, we believe, is better than closed, proprietary software for a wide range of reasons. For instance, commercial, closed-source simulation tools are typically expensive, restrictive and unnecessarily complex. By contrast, Facsimile is free, completely open and has a clean, extensible design. Commercial product development is typically driven by marketing departments that like adding bells & whistles rather than improving modeling capabilities, with the objective of enticing new customers to their software rather than addressing the needs of their maintenance customers. Facsimile development is driven by the needs of you, our users.
- High-quality, reliable software. There's nothing worse than encountering a serious bug in your simulation software when you're busy trying to meet a project deadline. We test our software throughout the development process, using a test-driven approach that highlights many bugs early on. However, no system is perfect and the occasional bug will slip through the net. When that happens, we encourage you to submit a bug report - no matter how trivial the bug - so that we can hunt it down, kill it and update our test suite to ensure that it never comes back to life. And since Facsimile is open-source, if you do find a critical bug, you can always track it down and fix it yourself (but don't forget to send us a patch for inclusion in our sources, too!).
- Flexible modeling paradigm. Facsimile doesn't seek to shoe-horn your modeling problems into an ill-fitting paradigm, like many other simulation tools do. For example, it does not come with pseudo-generic modeling elements such as Machines or Buffers, forcing you to decompose your problem into such constructs. Nor does it offer generic template systems for modeling Conveyors that fix the level of detail in your simulation accordingly. Instead of offering abstractions, we offer a concrete foundation upon which you can build concrete simulations.
- Cross-platform support. Want to run a simulation model on your Linux desktop? No problem, Facsimile plays nice with the penguin! Have a customer who uses Windows 8 (after all. no-one's perfect)? Easy! Your model will execute without modification there too! It even runs on the Apple Mac! Facsimile is not tied to any operating system or hardware, whether proprietary or otherwise.