AgentCubes Troubleshooting Session Guide
You can follow along as the examples are demonstrated and use the margins to annotate your solutions. For each problem please try to answer: What happens, why, and what is a solution? Except where notd, these examples have companion demonstration AgentCubes projects with the same name as the problem number. There is a final section with questions unrelated to specific example projects, also without a companion project.
- 1 World Disappears
- 2 Frog won't move in all directions
- 3 Trucks stuck on top of right tunnel
- 4 Sound in Loop, Message In Loop
- 5 Early game play difficulties
- 6 Once Every and % chance combinations
- 7 Clock problems:
- 8 Changing to different agent doesn't work
- 9 Unexplained Method Not Found error message
- 10 Other AgentCubes problems
(Note: There is no example project for this problem.)
The student moves the frog to the goal and receives the congratulatory message
Frog won't move in all directions
After completing all the rules for moving the frog and ending the game, the student finds that the frog only moves in one direction; that is, the frog does not respond to the other arrow keys. Why?
Trucks stuck on top of right tunnel
Truck are stacked on top of tunnel
You see the following after running the simulation for a short time. Why?
Truck on tunnel PLUS truck traffic jam
Sound in Loop, Message In Loop
Run the simulation and move the frog in front of a truck. Then try moving the frog onto the water. Finally move the frog onto the flag. What happens and why? How is the third problem above different from the other two? What are the implications in schools for with PCs with the Task Manager locked down?
Early game play difficulties
Stuck in loop after frog–truck collision
In this example, shortly after the simulation starts, the behavior of the frog colliding with the truck occurs (honk sound and world reloading) repeatedly until the stop simulation button is tapped. All you see is the starting screen:
Extra frogs appear
Trucks appear more frequently than expected
Once Every and % chance combinations
We want the island and bridge agents to generate new log and turtle agents, respectively, 50% of the time once every 0.6 seconds, which means an average of about every 1.2 seconds, but with some randomness. When we run the simulation, we see that log generation seems to be working properly; that is, there is random spacing between logs. However, turtles seem to be generated much more regularly and with little spacing. Why?
A “once every” example
Another “once every” example
Changing to different agent doesn't work
Suppose we have two frog agents a “Frog” and “Superfrog”, and a pellet agent, as seen in the project agent list at the left. The pellet allows the frog to become a superfrog.
When the frog eats (sees to its right) a pellet we want the frog to become a superfrog. So, we write the rule in the frog behavior.
The Superfrog can swim in water and can’t be killed by trucks etc. (See Superfrog behavior below.)
When the simulation runs, the frog seems to change into a superfrog, but when the frog moves in front of a truck or jumps on the water, it dies? The superfrog behavior rules are 100% correct. You can test this if you use the pencil tool to place a superfrog in front of a truck or on the water, it does not die. What is happening and why? How can this be corrected?
Unexplained Method Not Found error message
Method not found
Examine the behavior snapshot below.
When the simulation runs, AgentCubes reports the message below. What specifically is this message describing? Why? What other similar problems can occur with other behavior conditions and actions?
Simulation doesn’t end
Examine the behavior snapshot below. Run the simulation. Why doesn’t it stop?
Other AgentCubes problems
Note: all problems in this section used the same sample project
Open the project and run the simulation in each of these three worlds. Use the arrow keys to move the frog toward the river.
What do you observe? What is happening? Why? How did it get that way?
Key queuing (Windows systems)
Re-open the project from the previous example and, for ease of viewing, select “standard world” for this experiment:
Run the simulation and move the frog into the river. After the frog disappears, continue to press one of the arrow keys at least 10 times or until the following window appears:
What is happening?
Opening a project with AgentCubes running (Windows), Exporting a project
First open AgentCubes and then open any project in the Chooser window. Next locate any project on your computer, such as one on the desktop or in your Documents folder. If you do not have any project folders other than those in the Chooser’s “container,” export any project by selecting the tools (gear icon at the bottom of the Chooser window. Navigate to a convenient folder in which file storage is permitted. When you select ‘Export Project’ you will see a successful completion message:
Close the message window and find the newly exported project folder. Open the folder and then try to open the project by double-clicking the index.project file. You will see the following message:
The AgentCubes application will close. Note that this does not occur on Macintosh systems. How does this affect teaching students how to open an AgentCubes project?