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SimX: An Integrated Sensor Network Simulation and Evaluation Environment
Xiaogang Yang, Mingsen Xu, Paul Stickney and Wen-Zhan Song

It is well known that designing, testing and debugging sensor networks are extremely hard. It is mainly due to limited resources and distributed natures of sensor networks. In a lab environment, it is difficult and tedious to try various network configurations and simulate various challenging environment factors. Thereafter, the sensor network community has longed for a good sensor network simulation tool allowing the philosophy of WYSIWYG: What You See Is What You Get. In this paper, we present the design and evaluation of a visualized network manipulation tool integrated with TOSSIM and TOSSIM Live, called SimX. The SimX includes the following features: (1) topology manipulation, which allows a simple mouse drag on the virtual network node to actually change the physical network topology and the link qualities; (2) timing control, which allows a user to control a simulation to run faster or slower, even to pause the simulation; (3) variable watch and conditional breakpoints, which allow a user to watch variable value changes of all network nodes concurrently and set conditional breakpoints; (4) sensor input control, which allows a user to simulate different sensor data inputs and sampling rates. Besides supporting those traditional evaluation criteria, such as throughput, energy efficiency and delivery ratio, the SimX also supports a holistic evaluation methodology. The holistic evaluation methodology evaluates how well the holistic high-level spatial and temporal environmental changes have been recorded, not only those low-level engineering criteria. We also designed a XML-based sensor network visualization tool, which allows the user to illustrate any sensor network data, including data imported from TOSSIM and SimX.

Keywords: Wireless Sensor Network, Simulation, SimX, TOSSIM, XMonitor

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