The Facsimile project's goal is to develop and maintain a high-quality, 3D, discrete-event simulation library that can be used for industrial simulation projects in an engineering and/or manufacturing environment.

Facsimile simulations run on Microsoft Windows as well as on Linux, Mac OS X, BSD and Unix.

GNU Lesser General Public License v3 Logo
Facsimile is open-source/free software and is distributed under version 3 of the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPLv3).

Facsimile Project Adopts GPLv3

The Facsimile project has adopted the newly released GNU General Public License (GPL) version 3 for all future releases.

Facsimile was previously distributed under version 2 of the GPL.

Bug & Support Tracking Moving To Launchpad

The Facsimile project is moving its bug and support tracking to the Launchpad site.

This will enable Facsimile to integrate it's bug and support tracking to other open-source projects upon which it depends, as well as to projects that depend upon Facsimile, and will also allow bug information to be tied to specific releases/builds.

The Facsimile Launchpad site is located at: https://launchpad.net/facsimile/

Java Generics Suck

The implementation of generics in Java is pathetic! C# was the first of the two languages (let's face it, C# is so similar to Java that one might make the mistake of thinking that C# was merely Microsoft's embraced and extended version) to release a compiler supporting generics - a feature that allows classes and functions to take type parameters, somewhat akin to the templates feature of C++. As a huge fan of the latter, I found the C# implementation intelligent and well thought out, even if it was a little restricted by comparison. Java has been around a lot longer than C#, and has had far more time to formulate a superior generics implementation. It has failed miserably to do so.

Homepage Has Moved...

The new home page for the Facsimile project is at http://facsim.org/. The new site should offer better performance than the previous SourceForge-hosted site.

Happy New Year

Firstly, Happy New Year to you all! I hope 2007 is a great year for you and your family.

It's also time for a brief progress report on Facsimile.

The PATH to Enlightenment

In my day job, I've been relocated to an office nearer where I live, so I have a 20 minute commute each way instead of a 90 minute commute each way. I started at my new location on Monday, and started off by working on one of my AutoMod simulation models. I have a laptop, and this model was on its hard disk.

I quickly realized that my simulation was not loading, but appeared to have hung whilst reading in a kinematic movement system. Now AutoMod (I'm using version 10.0 for reasons that I may elaborate on in a future blog entry) does not have good tools for diagnosing this type of problem, so I had to try everything I could think of. It goes without saying that there was nothing in either am2out.dat or am2err.dat - or any of AutoMod's other output files - that would indicate what the problem was.

Artwork Required

Do you have a flair for graphical design? If so, then the Facsimile project needs you!

The Devil is in the Detail...

The KISS Principle - Keep It Simple, Stupid! Anyone involved in simulation will have almost certainly encountered this little nugget of wisdom. In a simulation context, it warns the modeler against adding more detail to a simulation than is necessary to meet the simulation's objectives. It is excellent advice. Unfortunately, there are far too many simulation modelers, academics and consultants included, who keep their models simple but forget that the term is relative: any simulation that is too simple to meet its objectives will yield inaccurate results and will be of limited usefulness. For this reason, rather than promote the KISS principle, I prefer a quotation that is attributed to Albert Einstein: Keep it simple. As simple as possible. But no simpler!

End the Microsoft taxes!

The PC manufacturing business is highly competitive and suppliers seem to do all that they can to reduce costs and beat their competitors on price as well as quality. So it is puzzling that when you buy a new PC, with the intention of running a free operating system (such as the Fedora, SuSE or Ubuntu flavors of Linux - to name a few - or any of the BSDs: FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, etc.) that you have to buy a copy of Windows XP - or Vista, when it finally starts shipping - that you do not want and do not need. In other words, Linux users are paying a tax to Microsoft. From the PC manufacturers viewpoint, this should surely be regarded as a bad thing as it unnecessarily raises the price of their machines - and, no doubt, reduces their sales and revenue. Or so you might think...

AutoMod on the move again...

AutoMod, a product that I've used professionally for over 10 years, is on its way to a new owner. Current owner, Brooks Automation, has announced that it is selling its Brooks Software division, which includes the AutoMod product, to Applied Materials.
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