A framework and browser interface to WaterSim 5, a Water Policy and Management Model for the Phoenix Metropolitan Area

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Thursday, 8 January 2015: 4:30 PM
132AB (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
David Arthur Sampson, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ; and R. Quay

Abstract: The Decision Center for a Desert City (DCDC), a boundary organization, promotes collaboration between scientists and decision makers. Our mission is to bridge science and policy (to foster knowledge-based decision making) and to study how decisions are made in the face of uncertainty. DCDC's water policy and management model for the Phoenix Metropolitan Area (hereafter “Phoenix”), termed WaterSim, represents one such bridging mechanism. We developed a framework for accessing and running WaterSim on a server using current technologies. The suite of code consists of a water budget model (server side), a web service (server side), an Application Programmers Interface (API) (server side), and a User Interface (UI) (client side). The UI houses dynamic input and output controls to run the model and display simulation results; we utilize traditional slider bars/other input controls to modify input variables and ©HighCharts to depict model results. The UI passes a Java Script Object Notation (JSON) string to the web service which invokes an instance of the model (dll) and, after running, returns a JSON string of model inputs and outputs to populate the browser controls, graphs, and images.

The UI consists of a dynamic HTML5 and CSS3 framework using JQuery plugins for controls and manage views. A dynamic generic control structure/ templates (HTML and Javascript/ JQuery code) that interacts with a dynamic interface to the water budget model permits easy rapid prototyping and dynamic modification of the input and output controls. WaterSim 5 is used to examine policy tradeoffs as they effect local and regional water sustainability in Phoenix, and the water supply and water demand challenges as influenced by climate change and drought. Our first release (scheduled for fall 2014) will target 6-8th grade public education opportunities as well as public demonstrations and interaction in ASU's Decision Theater.