Skip to content

This project showcases six minimal applications making use of Protelis through different networking protocols: simulated, using plain sockets, and via MQTT.

Notifications You must be signed in to change notification settings


Repository files navigation

Protelis demo application

The goal of this project is project is to show some basic implementations of Protelis using both Java and Kotlin.

Protelis requires Java 8+.

NOTE: this project uses submodules, and must be cloned with the --recurse-submodules flag: git clone --recurse-submodules

Build status


How to implement Protelis

The core or Protelis is the ProtelisVM. It allows to execute a ProtelisProgram on a particular device.

A device is represented by an ExecutionContext. It tracks the current state of a device and many properties such as its UID, current time and position in the space. In order to make this demo I extended the existing AbstractExecutionContext class, since it already contains some basic functionalities, such as using a NetworkManager to share messages between nodes.

Given the Protelis code:

module tutorial:factorial
 * The language is functional, every expression has a return value. In case of multiple statements in a block, the value of the last expression is returned.
 * Comments are C-like, both single and multiline supported.
 * The following defines a new function. If the optional "public" keyword is present, the function will be accessible from outside the module
public def factorial(n) { // Dynamic typing
  if (n <= 1) { 
    1 // No return keyword, no ";" at the end of the last line
  } else { // else is mandatory
    n * factorial(n - 1) // infix operators, recursion
// There is no main function, just write the program at the end (Python-like)
let num = 5; // mandatory ";" for multiline instructions
factorial(5) // Function call

An example is provided in the following snippet:

// We extend the AbstractExecutionContext class
public class MyExecutionContext extends AbstractExecutionContext { ... }
public class MyNetworkManager implements NetworkManager { ... }
// Load from a file the protelis program.
ProtelisProgram program = ProtelisLoader.parse("");
// Create a new execution context
MyExecutionContext myExecutionContext = new MyExecutionContext(new MyNetworkManager());
// Create a new virtual machine
ProtelisVM vm = new ProtelisVM(program, myExecutionContext);
// Now we have a working virtual machine which can run the program.
vm.runCycle(); // 120

As Protelis is an aggregate programming language it doesn't make much sense that we execute a program in a single node. We'd like to make a team of nodes running the same program and that's exactly the purpose of this project.

Contents of the demo

This project includes the following implementations of Protelis:

  • 01-java-helloworld: Java implementation using an emulated network;
  • 02-kotlin-helloworld: Same as above but in Kotlin;
  • 03-java-socket: Java implementation using sockets to make nodes communicate.
  • 04-kotlin-socket: Same as above but in Kotlin.
  • 05-java-mqtt: Java implementation using MQTT protocol to make nodes communicate.
  • 06-kotlin-mqtt: Same as above but in Kotlin.


To execute a demo run:

gradle <subproject>:run

How to import

IntelliJ IDEA (recommended option)

It is enough to open the project and double click on the main build.gradle.kts, everything should load up correctly.


It is recommended to install the Protelis plugin from the marketplace, then restart Eclipse.


This project showcases six minimal applications making use of Protelis through different networking protocols: simulated, using plain sockets, and via MQTT.







No packages published