Vensim Applications (Venapps) are simplified, push button interfaces that allow users access to a Vensim model without going through the Vensim modeling environment. Other generic names for a Venapp are "Decision Support Systems," "Executive Support Systems," "Learning Environments," "Management Flight Simulators," "Games," "Menu Driven Interfaces," "Microworlds," "Packaged Applications," and "Scenario Generators."
A Venapp uses a model and a set of rules for interacting with the model to give users simplified access to that model. To the user, the Venapp appears as a series of buttons, menus, or a sequence of screens allowing him or her to use and analyze the model in straightforward and meaningful way.
The simplest way to understand Venapps and what you can do with them is to look at the examples. The templates and the Vensim Demonstration Disk Venapp can be run and the Venapp code examined. These are shipped with Vensim in the models directory. The Demonstration Disk Venapp can be accessed by loading (normally c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Vensim\models\sample\intro.vcd (Windows XP), c:\Users\Public\Vensim\models\sample\intro.vcd (Windows Vista/7) or /Users/Shared/Vensim/models/sample/intro.vcd (Macintosh). (substituting the appropriate drive and directory if different) from the File>Open Model menu item.
The purpose of Venapps is to:
|•||Give non-Vensim users easy access to models.|
|•||Simplify scenario generation.|
|•||Support interactive gaming.|
|•||Provide on-line commentary on a model.|
|•||Focus attention on specific aspects of a model.|
|•||Provide control over what can be changed in making simulations of a model. |