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Complexity - Complex Systems Theory
Complex systems present problems both in mathematical modelling and philosophical foundations. The study of complex systems represents a new approach to science that investigates how relationships between parts give rise to the collective behaviors of a system and how the system interacts and forms relationships with its environment. The equations from which models of complex systems are developed generally derive from statistical physics, information theory and non-linear dynamics, and represent organized but unpredictable behaviors of natural systems that are considered fundamentally complex. wikipedia (en)
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An alternative use of the NetLogo modeling environment, where the student thinks and acts like an Agent, in order to teach concepts of Ecology

The Multi Agent Based programming, modeling and simulation environment of NetLogo has been used extensively during the last fifteen years for educational among other purposes. The learning subject, upon interacting with the Users Interface of NetLogo, can easily study properties of the simulated natural systems, as well as observe the latters response, when altering their parameters. In this research, NetLogo was used under the perspective that the learning subject (student or prospective teacher)interacts with the model in a deeper way, obtaining the role of an agent. This is not achieved by obliging the learner to program (write NetLogo code) but by interviewing them, together with applying the choices that they make on the model. The scheme was carried out, as part of a broader research, with interviews, and web page like interface menu selections, in a sample of 17 University students in Athens (prospective Primary School teachers) and the results were judged as encouraging. At a further stage, the computers were set as a network, where all the agents performed together. In this way the learners could watch onscreen the overall outcome of their choices and actions on the modeled ecosystem. This seems to open a new, small, area of research in NetLogo educational applications.

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NetLogo- Multi-agent programmable modeling environment

NetLogo- Multi-agent programmable modeling environment | Complexity - Complex Systems Theory | Scoop.it

NetLogo is a programmable modeling environment for simulating natural and social phenomena. It was authored by Uri Wilensky in 1999 and has been in continuous development ever since at the Center for Connected Learning and Computer-Based Modeling.

NetLogo is particularly well suited for modeling complex systems developing over time. Modelers can give instructions to hundreds or thousands of "agents" all operating independently. This makes it possible to explore the connection between the micro-level behavior of individuals and the macro-level patterns that emerge from their interaction.

NetLogo lets students open simulations and "play" with them, exploring their behavior under various conditions. It is also an authoring environment which enables students, teachers and curriculum developers to create their own models. NetLogo is simple enough for students and teachers, yet advanced enough to serve as a powerful tool for researchers in many fields.

NetLogo has extensive documentation and tutorials. It also comes with the Models Library, a large collection of pre-written simulations that can be used and modified. These simulations address content areas in the natural and social sciences including biology and medicine, physics and chemistry, mathematics and computer science, and economics and social psychology. Several model-based inquiry curricula using NetLogo are available and more are under development.

NetLogo can also power a classroom participatory-simulation tool called HubNet. Through the use of networked computers or handheld devices such as Texas Instruments graphing calculators, each student can control an agent in a simulation. Follow this link for more information.

NetLogo is the next generation of the series of multi-agent modeling languages including StarLogo and StarLogoT. NetLogo runs on the Java virtual machine, so it works on all major platforms (Mac, Windows, Linux, et al). It is run as a standalone application. Models and HubNet activities can be run as Java applets in a web browser. Command line operation is also supported.

 

 

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