Generic Animation Tool for Traffic Simulation
Traffic simulation has become one of the most used approaches for traffic analysis in support of the design and evaluation of traffic systems. Although traffic flow models have been applied for almost a century to describe, simulate and predict traffic, digital computer programs to simulate traffic flow have been developed from the 1950s. With the increasing power of computers, simulations began to incorporate animation techniques. These animation techniques and visualizations allowed viewing the overall performance of a traffic system design while providing an excellent means of communicating the result patterns from a simulation model to officials, decision makers and the general public in a meaningful way. This work presents the design of an animation/visualization tool for road traffic simulation, which is independent (stand-alone/separate from a traffic simulator) and generic (that is, can visualize output data from any traffic simulator). This tool implements Google Maps as its background, thereby enabling users to view the animation of a simulation output on any target road. The source data for the animation is an XML file which holds vehicle information.