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Len Granowetter

Scaling up with MAK Legion: An update on Legion progress

Last month, MAK Technologies released MAK Legion 1.0 — the first commercial version of our new Scalability and Interoperability Framework. I wanted to update everyone on some of the ways we're already using MAK Legion to achieve distributed simulations at unprecedented scale. Many of our early Legion demos, as part of the US Army STE CSE program, w...
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Len Granowetter

Introducing MAK Legion: a next-generation scalability and communication framework delivering millions of entities

Introducing MAK Legion: a next-generation scalability and communication framework delivering millions of entities

I'm excited to introduce the latest innovative technology our team has been developing: MAK Legion  a next-generation scalability and communication framework that can manage and deliver millions of entities in both local and cloud deployment environments.

As you know, MAK has been a trusted and leading provider of simulation interoperability products since our inception 30 years ago. But about two years ago, we asked ourselves an important question, inspired by the needs of the US Army Synthetic Training Environment program: "If we had the chance to re-design DIS or HLA today to meet tomorrow's most aggressive scalability requirements, and to better leverage modern technology such as multi-core machines, high-bandwidth networks, massively-multiplayer gaming paradigms, and cloud services  what would it look like?" Legion represents the answer to that question.

Legion's modern data-oriented implementation, client-server approach to mirroring of state, whole-earth geographic interest management, thread-safe API, simplified ownership transfer, reuse of SISO Enumerations and DIS/RPR data types, and powerful code-generation tools all contribute to Legion's ability to make large numbers of entities easy to manage from any engine or application.

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Len Granowetter

VR-Link for Unity

We are almost ready to release our beta version of VR-Link for Unity - an HLA/DIS Interoperability module for the Unity Engine!  The official 1.0 release is scheduled for late February.  Meanwhile, you can see a quick demo video here.

On the right, you’ll see a helicopter flying a route in VR-Forces. And on the left, you’ll see that same helicopter being reflected in real-time into a Unity-based sample application - over HLA through the new VR-Link for Unity asset.  For this demo, we used Unity’s well-known "bootcamp" sample terrain, which we also loaded into VR-Forces by exporting it as a height field and image.  And through VR-Link for Unity’s model-mapping GUI, we mapped the HLA entity type to a pre-existing Unity helicopter asset.

VR-Link for Unity gives you access to HLA/DIS objects and interactions directly from Unity’s standard C# scripting and development environment, so that your Unity applications become natively HLA and DIS compliant.  But since the module is built on our traditional C++ VR-Link libraries, it supports all the various flavors of HLA and DIS and works with any RTI that conforms to the appropriate HLA standards.  You can also leverage VR-Link’s FOM mapping capability to support custom HLA FOMs.  If you’re building M&S applications on the Unity Engine, and are interested in DIS/HLA interoperability, we’d love to hear from you.  If you are interested in participating in our beta program, or even just willing to help by describing some of your Unity-based projects, please drop us a note at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

We are almost ready to release our beta version of VR-Link for Unity - an HLA/DIS Interoperability module for the Unity Engine!  The official 1.0 release is scheduled for late February.  Meanwhile, you can see a quick demo video here: ftp://ftp.mak.com/VR-LinkForUnity.mp4
On the right, you’ll see a helicopter flying a route in VR-Forces. And on the left, you’ll see that same helicopter being reflected in real-time into a Unity-based sample application - over HLA through the new VR-Link for Unity asset.  For this demo, we used Unity’s well-known "bootcamp" sample terrain, which we also loaded into VR-Forces by exporting it as a height field and image.  And through VR-Link for Unity’s model-mapping GUI, we mapped the HLA entity type to a pre-existing Unity helicopter asset.

VR-Link for Unity gives you access to HLA/DIS objects and interactions directly from Unity’s standard C# scripting and development environment, so that your Unity applications become natively HLA and DIS compliant.  But since the module is built on our traditional C++ VR-Link libraries, it supports all the various flavors of HLA and DIS and works with any RTI that conforms to the appropriate HLA standards.  You can also leverage VR-Link’s FOM mapping capability to support custom HLA FOMs.  If you’re building M&S applications on the Unity Engine, and are interested in DIS/HLA interoperability, we’d love to hear from you.  If you are interested in participating in our beta program, or even just willing to help by describing some of your Unity-based projects, please drop us a note at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!
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Len Granowetter

Fall SIW Preview

I’m heading out today to the Fall SIW Conference in Orlando - the semi-annual Simulation Interoperability Workshop hosted by SISO (www.sisostds.org).  As usual, MAK is participating in many ways:

  • We will have a booth in the Exhibit Hall, Monday through Wednesday - showing off all of our products of course, but with a particular focus on the Interoperability products. 
  • I am proud to be chairing a new SISO Study Group on WebLVC. WebLVC is a new protocol we have proposed as a starting point for a eventual consensus-based SISO Standard.  It is designed to support interoperability between web-based client applications and traditional modeling and simulation federations.  The WebLVC Study Group meeting is Wednesday, September 12, at 1:30pm. 
  • We will be giving a presentation at the newly-resurrected RPR FOM Product Development Group on Wednesday morning - on the technical history of the RPR FOM. 
  • Aaron Dubois, our Product Development Manager for Link Products will be giving a product capabilities presentation as part of the LVC Tools Workshop session on Thursday afternoon, September 13, at 4:00pm. (continued...)
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Len Granowetter

Partner integrations with MÄK Products

On a quick walk around the show floor here at ITEC 2012 in London, I was excited to see the number of partners and other product vendors demonstrating new integrations between their products and ours:

1) Antycip Simulation is demonstrating a new dynamic ocean visualization plug-in to VR-Vantage, based on their MyOcean3D technology.  This plug-in generates realistic-looking waves by using fast-fourier-transform techniques to generate a dynamic height field, encoding the height field in a texture, and passing the texture to custom shader code running on the GPU.  The shader supports vertex displacement both vertically (for crests and troughs) and horizontally (for curling and breaking wave tips).  In the demonstration, a ship simulated by VR-Forces bobs and rocks realistically on the waves.  This is accomplished through a dynamic form of“ocean clamping&rdquo, where a simple physics model is run in VR-Vantage to offset the ground-truth positions and orientations published over HLA by VR-Forces.  The MyOcean3D plug-in to VR-Vantage is already in use at one customer site, and we are interested in hearing whether you’d like to see this become part of the standard product offering.

2) Discovery Machine is demonstrating a brand new integration between their Knowledge Service Modeler AI software, and our VR-Forces CGF.  With the Knowledge Service Modeler, users can construct strategies in a graphical language that is: accessible to a wide range of users; hierarchical in nature; object-oriented; fully reflective; and easily integrated into existing systems.  In their demonstration, Discovery Machine is showing how users can quickly build complex and high-level behaviors in their editor, and immediately assign those behaviors to VR-Forces entities in an interactive simulation environment.

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Len Granowetter

Len’s Take on our CEO Transition

As the news of Warren’s upcoming departure from MÄK has spread after today’s announcement, I’ve heard from a few long-time partners and customers asking for my take on what this means for MÄK. So I wanted to share a few quick thoughts. But first, this is good time to express how lucky I feel that I’ve had the opportunity to work for Warren for more than 18 years.

I first met Warren when I was 20 years old, when he conducted an on-campus interview at MIT. As I walked past all of the other companies’ representatives wearing suits and ties, there was Warren wearing sneakers, jeans, and a T-shirt (although he did have a blazer on over the T-shirt). I said to myself“That’s the guy I want to work for!” And I have enjoyed doing so ever since. Over the years, I’ve found Warren to be a visionary leader, an eternal optimist, a businessman of unimpeachable character, an outstanding role model, and a good friend. I wish you the best of luck, Warren, in your post-MÄK life, and I thank you for creating and cultivating a company that remains engaging, successful, and fun even after almost two decades. (continued...)

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