The Purdue University Network-Computing Hubs: Running Unmodified Simulation Tools via the WWW

TitleThe Purdue University Network-Computing Hubs: Running Unmodified Simulation Tools via the WWW
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2000
AuthorsKapadia, NH, Fortes, JAB, Lundstrom, MS
JournalACM Transactions on Modeling and Computer Simulation (TOMACS)
Volume10
Pagination39-57
Date Published01/2000
AbstractThis paper describes the Web interface management infrastructure of a functioning network-computing system (PUNCH) that allows users to run unmodified simulation packages at geographically dispersed sites. The system currently contains more than fifty university and commercial simulation tools, and has been used to carry out more than two hundred thousand simulations via the World Wide Web. Dynamically-constructed virtual URLs allow the Web interface management infrastructure to support the semantics associated with an interface to computing services without requiring any changes to Web browsers or WWW protocols. Virtual URLs also facilitate customizable control of access to networked resources. Simulation tools with text-based interfaces are supported via dynamically-generated, virtual interfaces, whereas tools with graphical interfaces are supported by leveraging available remote display-management technologies. Virtual interface generation and interactivity emulation are handled by a programmable state machine in conjunction with a mechanism to embed variables and ovjects within standard HTML.