17.11.2020 PR-#138

  • Disable scheduling of default operations with the new parameter: Param::unschedule_default_operations. Any operation name listed in Param::unschedule_default_operations shall not be scheduled by default. The name must match the name of the registered operation.
  • Rename DisplacementOp to MechanicalForcesOp, and accordingly other similar-named parameters

For example, to disable the mechanical forces between agents:

auto* param = Simulation::GetActive()->GetParam();
param->unschedule_default_operations = { "mechanical forces" };

11.11.2020 PR-#138

With regard to the upcoming v1.0 release, we decided to improve the API by integrating user feedback and eliminating inconsistencies that have accumulated over time.

This commit helps us to minimize backwards compatibility breaking changes in the future.

The major changes are:

Renaming BaseBiologyModule to Behavior
Renaming SimObject to Agent
Refactoring the Event mechanism and renaming it to NewAgentEvent

A more detailed list of changes can be found here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1peXSsBIhfLDGU3_FYjPkO3qI2zk-1nwScYBOftT12fY/edit#gid=0

08.10.2020 PR-#110

Complete rewrite of ParaView visualization adaptor.

The most relevant changes from the user perspective are parameters and the structure of paraview python scripts

04.09.2020 PR-#110

Rewrite of operations and operation management. See the docs of Operation for details on how to create, register and (un)schedule operations in BioDynaMo.

02.08.2020 4cca726

Change biodynamo.org/bioapi to biodynamo.org/api

11.02.2020 0d6407d

Upgrade to Python 3.

Since Python 2 is not supported in 2020 anymore, we upgrade to Python 3 (Mac OS excluded momentarily). We rely on PyEnv to create a consistent Python 3 environment through thisbdm.sh. For those who are not on Mac OS, please make sure that PyEnv is installed correctly by rerunning the prerequisites script, or check out the installation guide.

11.09.2019 0719cd6

Add SBML integration. Currently SBML is not supported on MacOS (see https://trello.com/c/vKPbh4iG).

05.08.2019 d7bab00

Major improvements of the BioDynaMo's build system.

  • Refactor build procedure.
  • Improve dependency detection and diagnostic messages for the user.
  • Rename biodynamo-env.sh to thisbdm.sh.
  • BioDynaMo can be used directly from the build directory. The install step has become optional.
  • Improve user and developer guide.

20.06.2019 257f1a3

Add support for multiscale simulations.

14.06.2019 cb15679

Release BioDynaMo dynamic.

This is a more user-friendly version of BioDynaMo. It removes most template code, and does not require compile time parameters, resulting in a simpler API. However, this comes at a small cost in performance. In due time we hope to regain the lost performance.

There are too many small API changes to present an exhaustive list here. We recommend to have a look at the demo folder folder or directly inspect the changes of the demo folder.

31.01.2019 3a51e76

Improve file structure in directory src/ and test/unit

API changes

Old New
SimulationObject SimObject

21.01.2019 1968ec2

This commit introduces a series of changes to encapsulate different discretization strategies. Other modifications have been made along the way to facilitate this change and solve known issues.

Discretization governs three main questions:

  • When should new simulation objects be visible?
  • When should simulation objects be removed from the simulation?
  • If a simulation object is updated, when should the change be visible?
  • Should operations observe the values from the last iteration or from the previous operation?

Since simulations might have different requirements, this commit introduces execution contexts to define and encapsulate this behavior in one place.

First, this commit introduces unique ids for simulation objects that stay constant during the whole simulation and are not reused if a simulation object is removed from the simulation. Among other things, this improves debugging simulations.

Second, building upon the introduction of unique ids, manual updates of SoPointer (references to another simulation object--e.g. NeuriteElement::daughter_left_) becomes obsolete. This is now managed by the ResourceManager.

Third, this commit adds an in-place execution context.

  • Simulation objects that are added or removed are visible to the whole simulation after the next timestep.
  • Operations directly modify simulation objects inside the ResourceManager. Thus, the result depends on the order in which sim objects are updated. Operations (biology modules or mechanical interactions) see the updated values from the previous operation.

Forth, this commit solves two race condition issues:

  • Adding new simulation objects to the ResourceManager caused issues if it triggered a growth. References and pointers to simulation objects were invalidated during this operation.
  • Modifications of neighbors. Two threads could potentially update the same neighbor.

Fifth, result from mechanical interactions will change. Up to now the implementation was inconsistent with respect to when updates will take effect. Biology modules were updated in place, while results from mechanical interactions where cached and applied once all simulation objects have been updated. Now, this behavior is the responsibility of the execution context. In case of the InPlaceExecutionContext this means that during iteration t some cells observe neighbors that have already been updated to timestep t'.

API changes

Several API changes were necessary to implement the described functionality. A general rule is to use the new execution context to perform actions instead of using the ResourceManager, or Grid directly. The thread local execution context can be obtained from the simulation object (e.g. calling sim->GetExecutionContext()).

Exemplary API changes:

  • Method ResourceManager::New was removed. During a simulation only use e.g. InPlaceExecutionContext::New. During setup of the initial model using ResourceManager::push_back is also fine.
  • Method ResourceManager::Get has been changed to return a const pointer. Thus rm->Get<Cell>()->push_back(new_cell) won't work anymore. However, calling rm->Get<Cell>()->size() is still fine.

For the full set of changes that are visible to the user, it is best to have a look at the demo folder and the differences of this commit.

25.10.2018 b197542

Resolve ROOT-9321 by removing TBase template parameter of simulation objects


  • Workaround for ROOT-9321
  • Shortens full name of simulation objects

Move duplicated biology module code from Cell and NeuriteELement to SimulationObject

This change requires a different signature of BDM_SIM_OBJECT_HEADER.

  1. Remove the suffix Ext from the first parameter
  2. Add the base class name as a second parameter.

In other words, copy the parameters from BDM_SIM_OBJECT to the beginning of BDM_SIM_OBJECT_HEADER

class Cell : public SimulationObject {
  BDM_SIM_OBJECT_HEADER(Cell, SimulationObject, 1, ...)
Old New
BDM_SIM_OBJECT_HEADER(CellExt, 1, ...) BDM_SIM_OBJECT_HEADER(Cell,SimulationObject, 1, ...)

08.10.2018 8a97cf2

Allow builds without dictionaries to speed up compile time

Early development of a simulation requires fast iteration cycles. During this stage serialization features are not needed. Thus, we support builds without dictionaries.

By default dictionaries will be built. To turn them off, run: cmake -Ddict=off ..

Old New
ClassDef(...) BDMCLASSDEF(...)
ClassDefNV(...) BDMCLASSDEF_NV(...)

18.09.2018 3a380e4

Refactor parameters.

  • Add functionality to define compile time parameters for a specific simulation object. This was necessary due to compile time errors of neurite biology modules. (Although they were not used for neurons, the compiler tried to compile them) This replaces the reinterpret cast workaround.
  • Simulation::GetActive()->GetParam() returns const pointer Runtime parameter should not be changed during the simulation. This simplifies the distributed runtime.
  • Add macros to simplify definition of compile time parameter.
  • All compile time parameter that take more than one type will be defined using CTList. No more distinction between Variant and VariadicTypedef.
  • Improve modularity. Each module can have its own parameter class. All parameter classes will be combined into CompileTimeParam::Param.
  • Make all runtime parameters non static.
  • Rename AtomicTypes to SimObjectTypes

Please have a look at the changes of the demos to see which lines need to be changed in your simulation after this commit.

29.08.2018 a373fca

Add the concept of Events. This is an important change to support extensibility. Now, there is a clear way to tell BioDynaMo what should happen with a new data member for a specific event.

Old New
gAllBmEvents gAllEventIds
gNullEvent gNullEventId
gCellDivision CellDivisionEvent::kEventId
gNeuriteElongation SplitNeuriteElementEvent::kEventId
gNeuriteBranching NeuriteBranchingEvent::kEventId
gNeuriteBifurcation NeuriteBifurcationEvent::kEventId
gNeuriteSideCylinderExtension SideNeuriteExtensionEvent::kEventId
Simulation objects and biology modules must have an event constructor and event handler function in order to support an event.

16.07.2018 3bac827

Change github option for biodynamo new. Previously it was opt-out (--no-github). This commit changes it to opt-in (--github).

Old New
biodynamo new --no-github biodynamo new
biodynamo new biodynamo new --github

11.07.2018 82e7e15

  • Add biodynamo demo command to try out the demos biodynamo demo lists all the available demos biodynamo demo <demo-name> <dir> sets up the demo <demo-name> in directory <dir>. If <dir> is not specified, it defaults to the current working directory.

26.06.2018 ba4fe1f

  • Add support for multiple simulations per process. Only one simulation can be active at the same time. Introduces new class Simulation (see API). This change causes many API changes -- see subsection below.
  • Write simulation files to separate directory: output/simulation-id/
  • Integrate simulation template for biodynamo new into the biodynamo repository to avoid inconsistencies with the biodynamo version.
Old New
InitializeBioDynaMo(...) Simulation simulation(...)
auto* rm = simulation.GetResourceManager();
GetDiffusionGrid(...) rm->GetDiffusionGrid(...)
Grid::GetInstance() auto* grid = simulation.GetGrid();
Param::some_parameter_; auto* param = simulation.GetParam();