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NAM Traffic Simulator and Data View Help

Started by z, January 18, 2009, 05:24:20 PM

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z

Quote from: Wthrwyz on February 28, 2012, 07:36:50 PM
If the config tool is installed in your C:\Program Files or C:\Program Files (x86) folder, then you'll run into problems with the tool being able to write backups and save its own internal config (like options/where to look for the .dat file) because it tries to save these things inside the program directory.  Windows Vista and 7 actually enforce the idea that the Program Files directory is for programs, not data, and these areas are owned by the system with no user access (which is why UAC kicks in when you try to install something new - remember that on Vista/7 even if you're an administrator, you do not run with administrator privileges by default).  When you run the tool and it tries to write back to a folder under C:\Program Files to do its work, the write operation fails.  I think Java pretty much ignores the error, so it looks like the program ran properly, but of course the settings don't actually get saved and if you dig through your system logs you'll find the root cause staring right back at you with a nice, fat "access denied" error.

The simplest solution is to locate the folder where the TSCT is installed and to change its security settings (right-click the folder, select Properties, go to the Security tab) to allow the "Users" group Modify/Write access to the folder.  The other option is to remove the TSCT from the Program Files directory and install it to its own folder directly under the C: drive - you may be able to just move the entire folder, as it is a Java program and likely won't break so long as you keep it in one piece.  Just remember to modify your shortcuts to point to the new location.

I hadn't heard of this happening before, but your explanation makes perfect sense.  (Similar problems have been encountered with the DAMN menus.)  Your two alternate solutions should also work equally well.

Asgurd

Hello everyone,

I enjoy very much that pack of awesomeness that is the Z simulator but I'm eager for more.
I would like to know if there was a way to further customize the Z-simulator than with the TSCS.

For instance I wish to be able to edit my network capacity to have street with a 1000 capacity while having highway with 60000 capacity (just an example), or I wish to set the speed of the various networks, just to experiment a bit.

Also about buses did I understand correctly the readme when it said that basically, when you check on "buses contributes to traffic", each bus passenger count as a car ?

z

Quote from: Asgurd on August 15, 2012, 07:14:35 AM
I enjoy very much that pack of awesomeness that is the Z simulator but I'm eager for more.
I would like to know if there was a way to further customize the Z-simulator than with the TSCS.

Well, anyone can modify the traffic simulator with Ilive's Reader, but this is not recommended, nor is such a modified traffic simulator supported by the NAM Team.  The Traffic Simulator Configuration Tool was constructed specifically to allow players to change those properties in the traffic simulator which were either completely safe to modify, and really reflected the player's preference, or which might have a slight negative effect, but one which was well-known, limited, and documented in the TSCT.

QuoteFor instance I wish to be able to edit my network capacity to have street with a 1000 capacity while having highway with 60000 capacity (just an example), or I wish to set the speed of the various networks, just to experiment a bit.

The speeds of the networks need to be pretty much what they are; otherwise, things tend to break, often in unpredictable or unexpected ways.  Most commonly, adjusting the speeds to something different from what they currently are will tend to result in increased dilapidation and abandonment due to commute time.

As for the network capacities, these generally have a lot less of an effect on the game than most people think.  But to avoid problems, it is important to keep the ratios of the various network capacities approximately the same.  This is why you can adjust the overall capacity level, but not individual network capacities.  The Network Capacity Multiplier in the TSCT gives you additional flexibility in this area.

QuoteAlso about buses did I understand correctly the readme when it said that basically, when you check on "buses contributes to traffic", each bus passenger count as a car ?

Yes, that is correct.  In that sense, it merely makes buses act the same as other travel types, such as trains and subways.  All vehicles in SC4 are single-passenger; this is true because in reality, vehicles are just an abstraction in SC4.  There are actually only Sims acting like vehicles.  For this reason, no mass transit vehicle will ever stop at intermediate stops, since it consists of just a single Sim.

For buses, the only alternative to having them count as traffic, the same as cars, is having them not count at all (which is what the original game does).  This turns out to be even more unrealistic, and reduces the accuracy of the traffic simulation (sometimes significantly).

Asgurd

Thanks, I guess I'll experiment with it later when I'm more comfortable with the transit system.

z

Quote from: Asgurd on August 17, 2012, 06:45:11 AM
Thanks, I guess I'll experiment with it later when I'm more comfortable with the transit system.

If you really want to learn more about the workings of the traffic simulator, I'd recommend A Guide to the Operation of the Traffic Simulator.

b22rian

Steve, this kinda thing still fascinates me about the Z / NAM traffic Sim. ;D

I had just started a new city.
One which has the most simplest of transit set ups and routing.
We have exactly one work place developed- a large coal power plant.
We have just a handful of single tile house
We have just one network route  which is a street
We have just 2 possibilities for any of these Sims to commute to this power plant to work-
1) drive
2) walk

Of these 2, driving is clearly the quicker commute.
Than why do we get -



In addition , it is a total mix of driving and walking transit modes when the composite transit commutes are considered for all 9 houses-



Here we see even distance does not seem to play a logical role in the choice of transit.
The 2 nearest houses walk to and from work.
The next furthest 3 houses away from the power plant all drive.
But than the next 3 furthest houses all prefer to take the slower walking commute !!

**Note Traffic Sim was run for 5 years ( included several updates)...


z

Quote from: b22rian on June 25, 2014, 03:49:02 AM
We have just 2 possibilities for any of these Sims to commute to this power plant to work-
1) drive
2) walk

Of these 2, driving is clearly the quicker commute.

Ah, but is it? $%Grinno$%  The traffic simulator is obviously disagreeing with you, and as you know, the traffic simulator is always right. ;D  (Well, almost always. ::))

Some of the Sims are saying to themselves, "Do I really want to go into the garage, get the car started up, back out into the street, all just to drive just a short distance?  I don't think so; I think it's faster to walk."

And they're right.

Other Sims think that driving is faster.  They're right, too.

How can this be?  Most people forget that there's a 24-second startup penalty for all driving trips.  There are also small penalties if Sims end up walking when they prefer to drive, or vice versa.  (Walking is considered to be mass transit.)

When you do the math here (which I did), you'll find that the drive vs. walking times are almost identical.  The walking times are always the same, whereas the driving times vary slightly depending on how many Sims drove the last time the traffic simulator was run.  If a lot of Sims drove last time, fewer will this time, due to the way the Congestion vs. Speed curve works.

Due to the way mass transit preferences work, there's a slight random factor in here, which explains why the transportation mode is not related to distance.  But if you keep building houses farther and farther away from the plant, all the Sims will eventually drive.  Also, if you take your current setup and simply change the street into a road, all the Sims will drive.

b22rian

#227
Thanks much for this Steve !

You brought up a lot of interesting points and factors about how the Traffic Sim operates  :thumbsup:

All just personal preferences mind you on my part, but I really like how the transit is varied due to the factors you explained about how the traffic Sim works. To me its more interesting to have more varied forms of commute type rather than just a "buttoned - down", 100 % efficient and , always the quickest routes. It is really a marvelous invention for the game, this Traffic Sim , and of course you played the biggest role in its current state of development. I really like the concept of these "random factors", you mentioned also.
None of us could thank you enough for the time and work you put into making it preform the great way it does  &apls

Brian

vortext

#228
Interesting stuff!  :thumbsup:

I've always suspected some random element at play when it comes to car vs. pedestrian traffic.

Quote from: z on June 25, 2014, 10:39:13 PM
Also, if you take your current setup and simply change the street into a road, all the Sims will drive.

Could you please explain more how & why that is? And maybe also elaborate on the 24-second startup penalty and pedestrians being considered mass transit!? I have never heard of both before.  ???
time flies like a bird
fruit flies like a banana

b22rian

Even with the road instead of the street , its a similar commute set up.
At least in terms of looking at transit type from individual dwellings.
The main change is population and occupancy is a bit higher now.
The % of car transit is now higher than before, if that matters ?



Do you think an interesting test might be to keep this set up but try rezoning and rebuilding the individual houses, but starting off with the road in place , to see if that is any factor in all of this ?

I wasn't sure if the destination finder also includes some sorta reluctance to change transit type once its been established ?

thanks, Brian

Korot

I personally would find that an interesting test, especially since none of the houses have switched commute type. There are just more commuters.

b22rian

Quote from: Korot on June 26, 2014, 02:03:33 PM
I personally would find that an interesting test, especially since none of the houses have switched commute type. There are just more commuters.

First, thanks for your interest in this , both Korot and Vortext

I ran 3 additional tests and I think you guys are going to find this interesting  :-\

Test 1-

Before demolishing the first row of houses , i wanted to make doubly sure we were giving the Traffic Sim able time to run a great deal of updates to establish this was the routing for these 9 houses it had settled on. So I increased testing time from 5- 10 years -
Results= the same, no changes

Test- 2

In this test is where I tried to establish the road network in place first.
All 9 houses were demolished and than Re - zoned with 9 identical 1 X 2 zone dimensions.
Once the 9 houses quickly grew back i than ran another test for = 7 years..
Here than are the results of that test -



Fairly similar to the first tests I ran. But perhaps the results even more puzzling, with both the closest 3 houses + the furthest 2 houses choosing to walk. But the middle 3 houses prefer driving.

However, my final test i think sheds some light on these testing experiments and confirms what Z has told us in his last post-

For this test I decided to replace 10 of the road tiles that route the sims to there work place at the coal power plant with 10 RHW-2 tiles which will speed up the driving commute even more-
These results are more what we now expect  ;D -



With only the 3 closest houses walking to work and the rest of the houses which are further away now drive to and from work ( I checked the evening commute just for fun and it was the identical routing and transit preferences).

So no, it does not match Z's prediction exactly..where he is suggesting build a road and than see if they all drive. But lets not nit pick the poor man as the gist of what he has told us in his post-

Direct quote from Z ( Steve) -


How can this be?  Most people forget that there's a 24-second startup penalty for all driving trips.  There are also small penalties if Sims end up walking when they prefer to drive, or vice versa.  (Walking is considered to be mass transit.)

When you do the math here (which I did), you'll find that the drive vs. walking times are almost identical.  The walking times are always the same, whereas the driving times vary slightly depending on how many Sims drove the last time the traffic simulator was run.  If a lot of Sims drove last time, fewer will this time, due to the way the Congestion vs. Speed curve works.

Due to the way mass transit preferences work, there's a slight random factor in here, which explains why the transportation mode is not related to distance.




is in fact correct.

b22rian

Steve or Alex

During my Beta testing of the RTMT flup stations , i was reminded of something I always wanted to ask you guys about  :thumbsup:

I was curious why the traffic reporting for these underground rail pieces never show the amount of rail traffic when you do either a (click or hover) route query on them ?
They do show the above ground traffic numbers however-



On the other hand i notice the rest of the underground flup pieces do show both the above + underground traffic figures when you route query them -



Any idea what might be going on here ?

brian


z

Quote from: b22rian on September 19, 2015, 03:45:36 AM
Any idea what might be going on here ?

Yes, it's due to the fact that the Underground Rail is, well, underground.  You can get the traffic volume numbers only for ground level or higher networks.

b22rian

Quote from: z on September 23, 2015, 10:23:12 PM


Yes, it's due to the fact that the Underground Rail is, well, underground.  You can get the traffic volume numbers only for ground level or higher networks.

But than why in my second pic, is it reporting traffic of 2609 for the underground GLR Flup ?
A similar pedmall/ rail piece you get nothing for rail ?
The only difference I can see between the 2 pieces is one if rail under the ground the other is considered by the game elevated rail but still underground ..

z

Well. that is definitely strange.  It seems to me that underground rail and FLUP must have some difference in implementation, though I don't know what that would be.

b22rian

Quote from: z on September 24, 2015, 11:38:15 AM
Well. that is definitely strange.  It seems to me that underground rail and FLUP must have some difference in implementation, though I don't know what that would be.

thanks much for your reply Steve,,
I know I can speak for all of us here with the NAM team it is great to see you feeling a bit better and back posting some..  :thumbsup:

I think I am going to ask Pierre to create an underground rail network just to see if he reports any traffic with a query, so we can rule out some issue with my plugins set up .
Unless Alex may have an idea on this...

brian

pierreh

I won't create an entire underground rail network, but I can turn a section or two of existing surface rail into underground sections and see what happens. I am not too good with underground rail, my rare attempts sofar were not very successful, possibly because I didn't really 'buy' into the concept, but I'll see what I can come up with.

z

I'll save you the trouble, Pierre.  I just fired up my old Queens city of Jamaica (pop. 3.5 million) from 2007, which made extensive use of underground rail.  You can see this in the traffic volume view, but no actual volume figures are available.

b22rian

#239
Thanks, for both your help guys  :thumbsup:

I recall this issue came up actually many years ago.
Back in those days I think I just assumed there was some type of issue with my plugins or nam install. i did not think that this was a global issue.
I would still be curious if Alex had any thoughts about what is going on here with rail..

Although because it still does show up on the volume/ congestion views, you can get a general feel for traffic amounts using those tools still..