MONTHLY Newsletter of the Society for Modeling & Simulation International

SCS M&S Newsletter

News and Development in M&S

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SimSummit Meeting at I/ITSEC 2010

Bill Waite opened the meeting inviting the sponsors/executive committee members to offer a few opening remarks.


· Patrick Rowe discussed the progress of the revised CMSP exam.  It will be broken into two exams, Manager and Technician, and is currently in the review stage.  Volunteers are needed for beta testing.

· Bill Waite spoke for SCS and described the society and the renewed emphasis on publications in their technical branch.

· Katherine Morse provided an update on SISO, discussing the upcoming joint SISO/SCS meeting in Boston from 4-8 April.  Additionally, she noted that SISO is reviewing its organization from top to bottom to make it more relevant and will roll out changes over the next year.  SISO is pursuing stronger relationships with NTSA, SCS, and ITSA.


Bill Waite discussed the cooperation of M&S agencies that will enhance the future of the discipline and provided a brief background on the SimSummit concept and history. He said that SimSummit was created to influence the future of the M&S discipline, profession, industry, and market.  SimSummit has a topical agenda that is organized into four main areas: Technology, Workforce Development, Industrial Development, and Business Practice. He noted that it may be time to re-engage the SimSummit members regarding their level of interest in each area. [...]


3-D Simulation Predicts la will bear brunt of the “Big One”

Any time there's a magnitude 8.0 earthquake, you'd expect a nearby city to get walloped. But according to a brand new simulation of what would happen if the "Big One" hit the San Andreas fault in southern California, the shaking would be particularly severe and last much longer in Los Angeles than in other parts of the region.

Using the world's fastest supercomputer, Thomas Jordan of the University of Southern California and a team of researchers simulated how the ground would shake throughout Southern California and into Mexico in the event of a magnitude 8.0 earthquake centered northwest of Los Angeles.

The team found that the ground beneath the city shakes harder and longer than surrounding areas, likely because of soil effects that amplify seismic waves. This means that buildings in L.A. have to put up with much more punishment. []








Calculating Return of Investment for US Department of Defense Modeling and Simulation

As budgets decrease it becomes increasingly more important to determine the most effective ways to invest in modeling and simulation. At the 2010 February Modeling and Simulation Leadership Summit in Virginia Beach, Virginia, it was noted that a clear way to determine the return on investment (ROI) for modeling and simulation (M&S) is greatly needed. However, calculating ROI from the standpoint of the Department of Defense (DoD) is different than calculating Roi for an industry investment, since the DoD does not generate revenue. Furthermore, currently there is no corporate DoD method for evaluating investment projects with respect to the value the DoD receives from each projects. Calculating the value that the DoD receives from a modeling and simulation investment is difficult since the result or benefit is in increased readiness, better training, acquisition cost avoidance, etc. This paper discusses an approach to comparing different modeling and simulation investment opportunities using an ROI-like measure. Additionally, we show methods to evaluate “benefit” (i.e. increased readiness, more effective training, etc.) received from an investment and then use those metrics in a decision analysis framework to evaluate each modeling and simulation investment. This decision analysis framework produces a numeric score that allows a decision maker to array investments from the highest return to the lowest. Finally, we conclude that by viewing investments from a DoD Enterprise view, evaluating investment over multiple years, measuring well– structured metrics, and using those metrics in a systematic way to produce an Roi-like result, the DoD can evaluate and prioritize M&S investments. [...]


Dinosaurs left foot prints thanks to “Goldilocks effect”

Dinosaurs left lasting footprints only when conditions were just right, scientists have claimed.

University of Manchester researchers used computers to simulate prehistoric creatures making tracks in different types of mud.

They found that soil conditions had to be perfect for different dinosaurs to leave fossil footprints behind.

Dubbed the "Goldilocks effect", scientists say it explains why tracks were left at some sites and not others.

"By using computer modelling, we were able to recreate the conditions involved when a 30-tonne animal makes a track," said palaeontologist Dr Peter Falkingham, who led the research team. [...]








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Volume 3