Developing an abstraction layer (wrapper) over High Level Architecture (HLA) Runtime Infrastructure (RTI) is a popular approach in many HLA-based distributed simulation development projects, since it offers more maintainable, robust, and portable methods. In this regard, RACoN (Rti Abstraction COmponent for .Net ) is a new wrapper targeted for Microsoft .NET environments, where it encapsulates the entire RTI low-level class interface in order to simplify the repetitive, error-prone, and low-level implementation details of the HLA federate interface. With the help of RACoN, any .NET language can be selected to implement an HLA federate (i.e. a simulation component).
RACoN is developed specifically for a graduate level distributed simulation course as a lab tool. Therefore, its intended use is for education, where the students easily develop HLA-based simulation projects during the course. Due to the target audience is the students, RACoN package comes with a Programmer's Guide written for beginners and with a sample application.
I don't want to give boring technical details, but RACoN architecture is specifically suitable for the layered simulation architecture style. You can check technical details in this paper. Another feature is its support for code generation. Currently, SimGe (introduced in my previous post) can generate all the RACoN compatible classes of a SOM using the federation execution configuration files (i.e. FDD/FED). A preliminary preview of the tool can be obtained from http://www.ceng.metu.edu.tr/~otopcu/simge/.
On the down side, RACoN does not support all the HLA services, but the major ones thought in the course. Currently, the main limitations of RACoN are as follows.
- RACoN currently supports HLA13 standard and DMSO RTI 1.3NGv6 API. This imposes the installation of DMSO 1.3 NG libraries prior to RACoN.
- RACoN does not support the full HLA13 federate interface services
The RACoN and its documentation are available at www.ceng.metu.edu.tr/~otopcu/racon.