This page last changed on Jun 07, 2005 by schank.

Notes from Ed's April 4-5, 2005 Visit

Ed Burke visited SRI to give us an introduction to Pedigogica. We ran through some Pedigogica examples, and then walked through the introduction to ACE is available at Creating and Modifying Pedagogica Activities. On the second day, we tried to recreate part of an existing dynamica activity to familiarize ourselves with the scripting and some of the dynamica engine API.

How do I create or modify a Pedigogica activity?

Using ACE, the Pedagogica Development Subsystem. An introduction to ACE is available at Creating and Modifying Pedagogica Activities

How do I get a simulation engine for my activity?

First, you have to download the jar for the engine to your computer (if you don't aleady have it) so that you can develop an activity using the engine.

One way to get a jar is to run an activity that has the jar you want. This way, the jar(s) will automatically be put in the Pedigogica class path. For example, you could start up the WISE activity assistant to get dynamica, biologica or other jars through that. To start the assistant, click on: Concord Pedagogica/Wise Assistant

A screen will appear. Suppose we want to work on a dynamica-based activity. Click Get Activity URL and drill down Activity/Physics/Dynamics/Dynamics.jar

Then click Run Activity. It will download the dynamical jar. You'll get another dialog, and you can start the activity from there.

Then in ACE, right-click in the node area, choose Edit Classpath, and add the URL for your jar.

Where else can I find simulation engines?

You can find jars through a browser, e.g., through

WISE activities

All things developed for the MAC project


Then just make sure whatever you download is added to your ACE classpath.

Dynamica example

Here are the things we did in ACE to create a portion of a dynamica activity.

  • Start up ACE, and create a place to start: a node. (Each page has a node). Create a splash screen node, and a table of contents node.
  • Create a Step1 node; this is where the action happens!
  • Create a placement and add the collisions jar. In the Step1 node, choose edit view, and add a new placement for the GUI. Do New Component, call it objectView. Add Collisions/lib/collisions.jar to the classpath (right click on activity, edit Classpath, add URL).
  • Edit the view of the node again. Show properties, select class, navigate to collisions.ui.GUIPanel and select.
  • Make Step1 the start node by selecting it and clicking the little red button (just for now).
  • Copy and modify code from other example, and create UI widgets.

We copied the setupview method and pasted it into the rood node script (background) and rename the variable to objectView (whatever we named our component). Ed ended up putting the code we needed on the Wiki and we copied and pasted. Widgets we created included a JComboBox for the objects menu (called objectList), gravity checkbox, clear object button, etc. We choose Snap to Grid with low resolution.

Note: The view method is called AFTER the view is created and made visible. If you need to manipulate the component appearance, do it here.

Nodes are blue (red selected) until you put something inside of them, when they then turn green (yellow selected).

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