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Huginn: A 3D Visualizer for Wireless ns-2 Traces

Author(s): Björn Scheuermann, Holger Füßler, Matthias Transier, Marcel Busse, Martin Mauve, Wolfgang Effelsberg.
Title: Huginn: A 3D Visualizer for Wireless ns-2 Traces
Published: Technical Report TR-2005-005, Department for Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Mannheim, June 2005
Keyword(s): Network Simulation, Visualization, Wireless Networks, Ad Hoc Networking
Abstract: Discrete-event network simulation is a major tool for the researchand development of mobile ad-hoc networks (MANETs). Thesesimulations are used for debugging, teaching, understanding, andperformance-evaluating MANET protocols. For the first three tasks,visualization of the processes occurring in the simulated network iscrucial for verification and credibility of the generatedresults. Working with the popular network simulator ns-2, we havenot yet found a visualization toolkit capable of reading native ns-2trace files and providing means to change the evaluated parameterswithout changing the visualization software. Thus, we developedHuginn, a software providing an intuitive way to visualize simulationproperties and to determine how they should be displayed without the need ofprogramming. In addition, Huginn has a 3D interface allowing ahigh exploitation of the (human) user's perceptive system. It helpsto handle the significant cognitive load associated with the mentalreconstruction of simulated network processes. Besides presentingthe software interface and architecture, we describe algorithmicsolutions that might be of a more general interest for similarproblems.
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