[Edu-sig] Network Simulations using Python

David MacQuigg macquigg at ece.arizona.edu
Wed Sep 10 17:43:41 CEST 2008

I'm putting together some problems for students in ECE 578, Computer Networks.  The simulator being used in the class is truly awful, one of these expensive commercial programs, dumbed down for academic use, but still loaded with the non-essential complexity typical of programs written for full-time professionals. 

It occurs to me that Python would be a much better tool for what we are doing.  The objects in a network are easily modeled as Python objects, and students gain a much better understanding when they see what is inside the objects, rather than just picking them off a menu, and using them as black boxes.

Take a look at http://ece.arizona.edu/~edatools/ece578/Ethernet/   The Python program is still in its early stages.  Next step is to "refactor" it, making the main program a Network object, so we can run it in a loop.

Comments and suggestions are welcome, especially for more clarity in the Python code.  Python is still not used in any class at U of A, and this could be one of our shining examples to get it started.

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