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TESTERS *Needed* - NAM Traffic Simulator

Started by jplumbley, January 14, 2008, 04:57:35 PM

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flame1396

Question, when I get a chance to mess with this on the weekend or maybe Friday will I need to delete the NAM file that edits networks speeds, commute times and capacities? Or does this run separately?
The most astounding and unique aspect of the human race is our fervent application of our ingenuity to kill each other, thus completely defying the near-universally proven fact that the ultimate goal of a member of a species is to ensure the survival of the species.

SC4BOY

The instructions are in the email to you with the file. They are VERY SPECIFIC about what to do.

jplumbley

Quote from: Starmanw402007 on January 16, 2008, 08:19:49 PM
Ok, thanks tarkus... I have some photos here of Steven's Point with the Nam Traffic Simulator. My ? is, what am I looking for with this simulator?


This photo is with the NAM Traffic Simulator that I installed into Steven's Point ok.

Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!) :)

Thanks for the pictures Starman, but unfortunately they are useless.  &mmm  In the first PM I sent you (I hope you still have it), I have a list of questions I would like answered.  These questions include showing me pictures of the Congestion and Traffic Data Views, also the Communte Time and Traffic Data Graphs.  Other questions include, has abandonment dropped (if an existing region), what your opinions of how the Sims have been travelling (are they smarter?).  Please consult the PM I have sent.

@Flame  SC4BOY is right, I have put installation instructions into the Email with the attached file.  Please read the instructions in there.  Thanks.
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Street Addon Mod - SAM

LoneRanger

jplumbley:
I pm'ed you a msg with my e-mail but didn't recieve the instructions + file yet.
You are a bussy man I know but maybe you overlooked.   ;)

jplumbley

Quote from: LoneRanger on January 17, 2008, 10:07:39 AM
jplumbley:
I pm'ed you a msg with my e-mail but didn't recieve the instructions + file yet.
You are a bussy man I know but maybe you overlooked.   ;)


I know it is there, but, as always.. I didnt have time to deal with it right away.  Ive recieved approximately 30 PMs in the past week, maybe more.  And still had RL to deal with.  I will send you the file by the end of tonight, I am about to start class now, so this is not a time to send you the file.  I promise you will have it sometime tonight (my time is EST).
"You learn something new everyday."

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Bringing the new horizons closer to reality.

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Street Addon Mod - SAM

Starmanw402007

sorry tarkus, I wasnt sure on how you wanted them. That was my fault. do u want a new set of photos with the graphs that u require? If so, I'll send u another tomorrow. Today, I'm keeping a low profile on my pc, I have tenderist of wright wrist and to make matters worst I have a sore back.
it's been like this for 3 days now. But will resume testing tomorrow ok.

Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!)  :)
Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!)

jplumbley

Quote from: Starmanw402007 on January 17, 2008, 01:32:28 PM
sorry tarkus, I wasnt sure on how you wanted them. That was my fault. do u want a new set of photos with the graphs that u require? If so, I'll send u another tomorrow. Today, I'm keeping a low profile on my pc, I have tenderist of wright wrist and to make matters worst I have a sore back.
it's been like this for 3 days now. But will resume testing tomorrow ok.

Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!)  :)

Yes that would be quite helpful.  New pictures and answers to my list of questions in the PM I sent would be great.  There is no *rush*, but like with all things the sooner I have testing completed, the sooner I can put together a release candidate.

BTW, Im not Tarkus..  $%Grinno$%  I know, we may have similar styles and may look alike sometimes, but, I can assure you that we are completely different people  :D
"You learn something new everyday."

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Bringing the new horizons closer to reality.

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Street Addon Mod - SAM

Starmanw402007

sorry about jp. I didnt mean to call u tarkus. Sometimes I get confused abit lol. especially, when I'm not doing well LOL.
Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!) :)
Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!)

kassarc16

When this is released for a more widespread beta, will mott's tweaks to automata settings be included? His settings on appearance/dissapearance and speeds were great, but I went back to NAM automata since his visual settings were too low and my city of 1/4 million barely had any traffic on the roads.

jplumbley

Quote from: kassarc16 on January 17, 2008, 08:41:58 PM
When this is released for a more widespread beta, will mott's tweaks to automata settings be included? His settings on appearance/dissapearance and speeds were great, but I went back to NAM automata since his visual settings were too low and my city of 1/4 million barely had any traffic on the roads.

I have planned to use two central "cores" for the Pathfinding Engine.

I have built one based on my own calculations to expand the distance that Sims will travel, while keeping the game in a healthy balance.  This is the "core" that is in the current testing release.  This "core" has been designed to allow Sims to travel upto the distance of 1 Large City tile or 512 tiles on an Avenue.  This will allow for the suburb/CBD setup in a large city tile to function much better.  Sims theoretically, should now be able to walk upto 43 tiles instead of 7.  The pathfinding should be much more realistic and balanced.  It should also make the Sims choose better paths if a route becomes congested compared to another route and spreading the traffic amoungst the differing routes.

Mott has also built a "core" that is based on the Vanilla distances for Sims to travel.  His "core" does much the same as mine, except the main difference is his keeps the balance at the Vanilla distances.  This means Sims will still walk upto 7 tiles, cars wont travel across a large city tile unless forced, etc.

Now, obviously, as you have stated there can be issues with the Capacity levels.  Well, this is one thing I need to address.  My intent is to build a few differing variations of each "core", the only difference being Capacity levels of the networks.  The problem is I require testing for this.  Right now, I am trying to make sure that the "cores" are balanced and wont harm your city when implemented.  Theoretically they are balanced from a mathematical viewpoint, but you never know until it is tested.  So far I am pleased with what I have seen.

Telltale signs that the Simulator is unbalanced:
1.  Abandonment when there is sufficient demand and jobs available.
2.  Sims taking obscure paths.
3.  Possible Abandonment/Repopulation cycle. (can be caused by other things aswell, such as poorly designed network structure, other Simulator issues, etc.)
There are others aswell but these are big ones.

@Haljackey  I have to say I am not sure what has caused your CTD.  This is not an expected outcome and I have a hard time agreeing that it is my file that caused it.  Here is what would be expected.  Simulators are VERY dependant on processing power.  I dont know how big your processor is and am not sure if this is even the problem, just my first thought.  When a new Simulator is installed into a large existing city (such as yours), the game will have to re-calculate and process every Sims new path.  Now, there is a time limit on how long this calculation is allowed to take.  This time limit is widely considered to be approximately 6 months and is always is months no matter what speed you are running your game at (slow, meduim, fast or very fast).  So, the more Sims you have the more calculations there will be to calculate, which means more processor time.  Now, obviously, if the calculations take longer than the alotted time MAXIS wouldnt allow your game to crash.  That would be just foolish. 

So, what really happens is the areas that the calculations are not finished? 

The answer is simple.  You get the famous, abandoment due to long commute times.  So, I dont know why your game crashed, but IMO I dont believe it is from the Simulator.  But, there is a way to test this theory a bit.  I am going to assume that you put the game to simulate for a few months on Cheeta Speed.  Due to the fact the game allows for approximately a 6 month time allotment this means this time is a variable of what simulation speed you use.  So, if you have it on Cheeta Speed it will have a much shorter time than on Turtle Speed.  In all actual fact, the best theoretical speed to play Sim City is on the slowest speed setting because it gives ALL of the Simulators more time to do what they are best at.  Your simulation will be more accurate and everything should work better.  So, my suggestion is for you to test this file on Turtle Speed and then come back again with what happens.
"You learn something new everyday."

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Bringing the new horizons closer to reality.

Berethor ♦ beskhu3epnm ♦ blade2k5 ♦ dmscopio jplumbley ♦ moganite ♦ M4346 ♦ Dedgren ♦ Ennedi Shadow Assassin ♦  Tarkus ♦ wouanagaine
Street Addon Mod - SAM

xxdita

#30
- Abandonment - CAM is "enhanced" with bones1's Less Abandonment Mod, so typically, instead of higher stage or high wealth buildings growing in an area likely to delapidate, you get no growth at all. So especially at the higher stages of CAM, efficient transit is absolutely essential to avoid abandonment, and helps with new growth, often creating an artificial Stage Cap. I experienced very little difference in abandonment, probably due to avenue capacities.

- do you think the Sims have become smarter in the way they choose paths. 
   Seem to go a little more out of their way for a faster commute, when possible. More willing to walk to a subway station now.
- pictures of the Data Traffic views, both Congestion and the specific Traffic Views. 
    Before installing...






    After one year with the new Mod...






- If this Simulator has had an effect on your city, what does it do? 
   Improves subway use, but avenues are now overwhelmed, due to having the same capacity as streets.
- Does it make you change the way you play the game when laying your Transit Systems? 
    Able to use less subway stations & bus stops, with Sims willing to walk farther now. For CAM, we're going to need larger capacity bus stops, subway stations, etc. I'm using Ninja Boulevard Kiosk, with a capacity of 16,000. But several stations are now overfilled. Mass Transit is funded at 120% maximim.
- What is the size of your test city? 
     medium tile, just over 2Million Sims
- Do you have CAM installed?  Yes.
- What areas have the highest traffic? 
Avenues are the most over-capacitied. Streets & roads have cleared up for the most part.
- Is your Traffic Congestion all green now?
   Nope.

jplumbley

Wow.  Good job there xxdita!  :thumbsup:

I have a couple more questions for you now.

What was your original NAM_Traffic_Simulator (my guess Radical or 10x Speed, 10x Commute, 10x Capacity)?

If this is the case that would definately account for the massive drop in car travel.  Since your city is so large you are getting to the point where Mass Transit should be taking preference.  Currently, my Simulator has traffic capacities very close to 2.5x the Vanilla Values for Car networks.  But, I have drastically changed the Mass Transit to having 10,000 per line.  In real life, Mass Transit does have a much higher capacity than surface roads.

As I have said there will be different variations which have different Capacities.  I will probably be making 3, maybe 4 Capacity Variations per "Core".  I will probably name them Easy, Medium, Hard, Vanilla.  My thoughts on how I will go about this progressive system will probably be Vanilla, Vanilla x1.5, Vanilla x2.25, Vanilla x4.5, with a new capacity design for Mass Transit.

What is your overall feeling of the Simulator at this point?  (Feel free to test this a little more in different cities aswell).
"You learn something new everyday."

http://img517.imageshack.us/img517/169/nhpjplumbleykv3.gif
Bringing the new horizons closer to reality.

Berethor ♦ beskhu3epnm ♦ blade2k5 ♦ dmscopio jplumbley ♦ moganite ♦ M4346 ♦ Dedgren ♦ Ennedi Shadow Assassin ♦  Tarkus ♦ wouanagaine
Street Addon Mod - SAM

LoneRanger

Kinda weird, I get different results compared to xxdita.  :)

Inhabitants: 490K
Mass transportation: Bus and Train [last one mainly to travel out of the city]

Congestion at the start of testing:




After a few years all turns green:



Comute time decreases rapidly:



Volume:



And the most interesting one:



As a sidenote, I have bustops every 6 tiles or less.
I didn't use radical but used only two options wich were set to 10X and 5X. [capacity and speed if I remember correctly]
I also used Mott's a03 traffic simulator in combination but since it loaded last it probbably overruled the first.
First I removed Mott's simulator but didn't notice big differences.











Haljackey

#33
All right, I now have something to report. 

I think it was me that caused the CTD last time, because it ran for a few good hours today and I exited the game properly this time, saving my data!

Anyways, here are my results.

Traffic congestion Data:


Traffic congestion Data: Better quality (Unedited, PNG Image)


Traffic commute data (Morning)


Traffic commute data (Morning): Better quality (Unedited, PNG Image)


Traffic commute data (Evening)


Traffic commute data (Evening): Better quality (Unedited, PNG Image)


Commute time graph


Traffic volume graph


Jobs and pop graph





-Overall, the mod didn't do much at all.  There was really no change to congestion in any part of the city.  Commute time actually went UP!  Pedestrian traffic increased though, and overall, there appears to be LESS abandonment.

By the way, I let the simulator run for roughly 12-13 years over the course of around 3 hours.  Photos were taken along this timespan.  If you need any more information, let me know!

I hope you find this data useful,
-Haljackey

xxdita

I seem to be having a CTD issue as well, when trying to play existing cities where Promote Biking was used. New cities have no problems though. So, I'm in the process of building a new large tile city, not using either of these plugins. Once I get a respectable population, I'll run the game for 25 years with Promote Biking, exit without save, then run it for 25 years with your mod, for some comparisons. I'll be back with pics by tomorrow night.

Starmanw402007

Is Photobucket down for some reason? for the pass 2 days I've been trying to get to photobucket. It's been very very slow to load. I do have an account there.

Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston!
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!) :)
Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!)

BigSlark

Nate,

How fast is your CPU? When I loaded a city of ~600,000 that used Promote Biking the simulator was on "very fast" and I didn't have any time pass for four minutes.

I've got a AMD Athlon64 3200+ that runs at 2.8 Ghz and 2GB of RAM.

Cheers,
Kevin

SC4BOY

Interesting bit of data.. this is a large city tile, but only 120000 People.  Note that I was originally using the 10x 10x improvedpath with BIKES on the CAM settings. Also this city was mostly built with STREETS except the main thoroughfares. You can see by this string of screenshots what happens.


Initial Shot before running..


After 2 weeks of running


After 4 weeks


After 12 weeks

At this point it makes little sense in running it longer. It seems to me that what is happening shows a nice action on the part of the simulator.

First the streets begin to GO RED very quickly. This is because it only takes 200-500 cars to jam the streets without upgrading everything in the city to ROADS. This indicates to me that having the CAPACITY SETTING lowered as in the JP version is just too low for larger cities.. (this is just my opinion.. I hate to have every path in a city tile to have to be roads or better... In any level 2 residential density zoning I'd like to see still about 60% or more of them to remain as streets) The loss of the bike walks also loads things too, of course

The next thing to note is that the simulator TRIES TO EVEN OUT THE LOADS on each possible path. I think this is excellent.

At the end (there is nothing to be gained by running longer as the "choke points" are saturated and "it ain't getting any better".. hehe) Without replacing or mod'ing the transport hubs this just isn't going to significantly improve. Most of the relevant transport stations are operating at 400-500% of capacity.

Here's a shot of the COMMUTES. Note that in spite of the streets all being saturated, the commute time still has fallen significantly. As I don't know the details of the setup, I can't really describe the mechanics. I'm sure JP knows why.


Commute Time


Traffic Density

Basic Overview of citytile/region shows this is somewhat of a "wheel and spokes" layout which I designed specifically to fight the COMMUTE CIRCLES problems.


Center city tile


Region overview

Dunno what all this shows, but should shed some light for a relatively early development.

Starmanw402007

Hi BigSlark, my new computer has 2.87 GB now. And it's upto date with all the new stuff added with Vista Windows. But, whenever I goto photobucket it takes like forever to load. I have no problem with other website except for Photobucket. Perhaps they were updating their
webpage when I tried to log on.
Your Friend;
Mayor Of Steven's Point & Maxiston
(Proud To Be Cities Of Sim Nation!)

jplumbley

Quote from: SC4BOY on January 19, 2008, 02:25:17 PM
Interesting bit of data.. this is a large city tile, but only 120000 People.  Note that I was originally using the 10x 10x improvedpath with BIKES on the CAM settings. Also this city was mostly built with STREETS except the main thoroughfares. You can see by this string of screenshots what happens.

Initial Shot before running..

After 2 weeks of running

After 4 weeks

After 12 weeks

At this point it makes little sense in running it longer. It seems to me that what is happening shows a nice action on the part of the simulator.

First the streets begin to GO RED very quickly. This is because it only takes 200-500 cars to jam the streets without upgrading everything in the city to ROADS. This indicates to me that having the CAPACITY SETTING lowered as in the JP version is just too low for larger cities.. (this is just my opinion.. I hate to have every path in a city tile to have to be roads or better... In any level 2 residential density zoning I'd like to see still about 60% or more of them to remain as streets) The loss of the bike walks also loads things too, of course

The next thing to note is that the simulator TRIES TO EVEN OUT THE LOADS on each possible path. I think this is excellent.

At the end (there is nothing to be gained by running longer as the "choke points" are saturated and "it ain't getting any better".. hehe) Without replacing or mod'ing the transport hubs this just isn't going to significantly improve. Most of the relevant transport stations are operating at 400-500% of capacity.

Here's a shot of the COMMUTES. Note that in spite of the streets all being saturated, the commute time still has fallen significantly. As I don't know the details of the setup, I can't really describe the mechanics. I'm sure JP knows why.


I will start off by addressing the Commute Time dropping, though your Congestion has grown.  I think this has to do with the Simulator recalculating alot of your paths.  The old Simulator is not very optimal, in fact it likes to use the same route over and over, especially when capacity allows it.  If the simulator starts using more routes as it did, it will allow for the Commute time to drop.

Now, about your congestion "issue".  The capacity is set much lower than 10x capacity (apparently what you were using).  Due to this you have built your city to be optimized to this capacity setting, which would actually remove some of the effectiveness of the Simulator such as the simulator spreading out the traffic amoungst all possible routes.  Another thing that seems to add to your congestion issue is first off you said you are using Streets, these are only set at 1000 capacity and not 5000 (I think thats what the 10x Capacity was set at).  The streets are in a fairly high density area with no "major route", due to this you are going to become more and more congested the further you build away from the bottleneck you have created.  Not only have you used the under capacity streets in high density zoning, you have also not used mass transit.  Rails, subways, monorails etc all have higher capacities, in the test file set at 7500.  If you had any of these in your system, your congestion problems would be virtually nulified becuase it gets Sims off the roads.

In real life, transit systems are built as a dynamic system where you cannot allow only one type of transportation.  My city has approximately 170k inhabitants.  We have one highway, busses and one main rail line, and we are widely considered a bedroom community (everyone commutes out of town).  At rush hour traffic in our city is almost a standstill because we havent put nearly enough money into our bus system as we should have and our rail system, well, that is a different story all together.  Approximately 60 to 70% of our "Sims" drive to work and that accounts for much of the congestion.  So, I feel that your test accurately portrays a very real situation.

Just wait till I release my mod on the Congestion Data View, that will show you the Actual Congestion in your cities and not the skewed MAXIS Congestion Data View.

"You learn something new everyday."

http://img517.imageshack.us/img517/169/nhpjplumbleykv3.gif
Bringing the new horizons closer to reality.

Berethor ♦ beskhu3epnm ♦ blade2k5 ♦ dmscopio jplumbley ♦ moganite ♦ M4346 ♦ Dedgren ♦ Ennedi Shadow Assassin ♦  Tarkus ♦ wouanagaine
Street Addon Mod - SAM