Visualization and Debugging Tools

The ANTs environment consists of numerous distributed software agents and hardware components. System development in such an environment requires a means of observing and validating the potentially hidden activities of these components. Existing visualization and debugging tools provide some mechanisms for observing behaviors and detecting faults in individual components, but the fast-paced nature of ANTs agents makes these conventional user interfaces (visualizations) and debugging techniques less effective. This chapter will discuss several techniques for visualizing and debugging complex, real-time, agent-based systems. These techniques vary in their level of invasiveness and general applicability.

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