A NetLogo extension that brings date/time utilities and discrete event scheduling to NetLogo
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NetLogo Time Extension


Install the time extension

Include the extension in your NetLogo model (at the top):

extensions [time]

Date/Time Utilities

Create a global date/time and initialize in the setup procedure:

to setup
  set dt time:create "2000/01/01 10:00"

From the console, execute setup and then print a formatted version of your date/time to the console:

print time:show dt "EEEE, MMMM d, yyyy"
;; prints "Sunday, January 2, 2000"

Print the hour of the day, the day of the week, and the day of the year:

print time:get "hour" dt		;; prints 10
print time:get "dayofweek" dt 	;; prints 6
print time:get "dayofyear" dt	;; prints 1

Add 3 days to your date/time and print the date/time object to the screen:

set dt time:plus dt 3 "days"
print dt

Compare your date/time to some other date/time:

ifelse time:is-after dt (time:create "2000-01-01 12:00") [print "yes"][print "no"]

Time Series Tool

Download this example time series file and place in the same directory as your NetLogo model. Here are the first 10 lines of the file:

; meta data at the top of the file 
; is skipped when preceded by 
; a semi-colon
2000-01-01 00:00:00,1000,10
2000-01-01 01:00:00,1010,11
2000-01-01 03:00:00,1030,13
2000-01-01 04:00:00,1040,14
2000-01-01 05:00:00,1050,15

Create a global to store a LogoTimeSeries object. In your setup procedure, load the data from the CSV file:


set time-series time:ts-load "time-series-data.csv"

Create a LogoTime and use it to extract the value from the "flow" column that is nearest in time to that object:

let current-time time:create "2000-01-01 01:20:00"

let current-flow time:ts-get time-series current-time "flow"

;; By default, the nearest record in the time series is retrieved (in this case 1010), 
;; you can alternatively require an exact match or do linear interpolation.

Discrete Event Scheduler

Create a few turtles and schedule them to go forward at tick 10, then schedule one of them to also go forward at tick 5.

create-turtles 5

time:schedule-event turtles ([ [] -> fd]) 10
time:schedule-event (turtle 1) ([ [] -> fd]) 5

Execute the discrete event schedule (all events will be executed in order of time):


;; turtle 1 will go foward at tick 5, 
;; then all 5 turtles will go forward at tick 10

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What is it?

This package contains the NetLogo time extension, which provides NetLogo with three kinds of capabilities for models that use discrete-event simulation or represent time explicitly. The package provides tools for common date and time operations, discrete event scheduling, and using time-series input data.

Dates and Times

The extension provides tools for representing time explicitly, especially by linking NetLogo’s ticks to a specific time interval. It allows users to do things such as starting a simulation on 1 January of 2010 and end on 31 December 2015, have each tick represent 6 hours, and check whether the current simulation date is between 1 and 15 March.

This extension is powered by the Joda Time API for Java, which has very sophisticated and comprehensive date/time facilities. A subset of these capabilities have been extended to NetLogo. The time extension makes it easy to convert string representations of dates and date/times to a LogoTime object which can then be used to do many common time manipulations such as incrementing the time by some amount (e.g. add 3.5 days to 2001-02-22 10:00 to get 2001-02-25 22:00).

Time Series Utilities

Modelers commonly need to use time series data in NetLogo. The time extension provides convenient primitives for handling time series data. With a single command, you can load an entire time series data set from a text file. The first column in that text file holds dates or datetimes. The remaining columns can be numeric or string values. You then access the data by time and by column heading, akin to saying "get the flow from May 8, 2008".

Users can also create and record a time series of events within their model, access that series during simulations, and export it to a file for analysis. For example, a market model could create a time series object into which is recorded the date and time, trader, price, and size of each trade. The time series utilities let model code get (for example) the mean price over the previous day or week, and save all the trades to a file at the end of a run.

Discrete Event Scheduling

Note: Formerly this capability was published as the Dynamic Scheduler Extension, but that extension has been merged into the time extension in order to integrate the functionality of both.

The time extension enables a different approach to scheduling actions in NetLogo. Traditionally, a NetLogo modeler puts a series of actions or procedure calls into the "go" procedure, which is executed once each tick. Sometimes it is more natural or more efficient to instead say "have agent X execute procedure Y at time Z". This is what discrete event scheduling (also know as "dynamic scheduling"") enables. Discrete event simulation has a long history and extensive literature, and this extension makes it much easier to use in NetLogo.

When is discrete event scheduling useful? Discrete event scheduling is most useful for models where agents spend a lot of time sitting idle despite knowing when they need to act next. Sometimes in a NetLogo model, you end up testing a certain condition or set of conditions for every agent on every tick (usually in the form of an “ask”), just waiting for the time to be ripe.... this can get cumbersome and expensive. In some models, you might know in advance exactly when a particular agent needs to act. Dynamic scheduling cuts out all of those superfluous tests. The action is performed only when needed, with no condition testing and very little overhead.

For example, if an agent is a state machine and spends most of the time in the state “at rest” and has a predictable schedule that knows that the agent should transition to the state “awake” at tick 105, then using a dynamic scheduler allows you to avoid code that looks like: "if ticks = 105 [ do-something ]", which has to be evaluated every tick!

A second common use of discrete event scheduling is when it is important to keep track of exactly when events occur in continuous time, so the simplifying assumption that all events happen only at regular ticks is not appropriate. One classic example is queuing models (e.g., how long customers have to stand in line for a bank teller), which use a continuous random number distribution (e.g., an exponential distribution) to determine when the next agent enters the queue.

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First, download the latest version of the extension. Note that the latest version of this extension was compiled against NetLogo 5.0.4; if you are using a different version of NetLogo you might consider building your own jar file (see building section below).

Unzip the archive and rename the directory to "time". Move the renamed directory to the "extensions" directory inside your NetLogo application folder (i.e. [NETLOGO]/extensions/). Or you can place the time directory under the same directory holding the NetLogo model in which you want to use this extension.

For more information on NetLogo extensions: http://ccl.northwestern.edu/netlogo/docs/extensions.html

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See the example models in the extension subfolder "examples" for thorough demonstrations of usage.

Data Types

The time extension introduces some new data types (more detail about these is provided in the behavior section):

  • LogoTime - A LogoTime object stores a time stamp; it can track a full date and time, or just a date (with no associated time).

  • LogoTimeSeries - A LogoTimeSeries object stores a table of data indexed by LogoTime. The time series can be read in from a file or recorded by the code during a simulation.

  • LogoEvent - A LogoEvent encapsulates a who, a what, and a when. It allows you to define, for example, that you want turtle 7 to execute the go-forward procedure at tick 10. When scheduling an event using the time extension you pass the who, what, and when as arguments (e.g. "time:schedule-event (turtle 1) td 5").

  • Discrete Event Schedule - A discrete event schedule is a sorted list of LogoEvents that is maintained by this extension and manages the dispatch (execution) of those events. Users do not need to manipulate or manage this schedule directly, but it is useful to understand that it stores and executes LogoEvents when the "time:go" or "time:go-until" commands are issued. As the schedule is executed, the time extension automatically updates the NetLogo ticks to match the current event in the schedule.

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The time extension has the following notable behavior:

  • LogoTimes can store DATETIMEs, DATEs, or DAYs - A LogoTime is a flexible data structure that will represent your time data as one of three varieties depending on how you create the LogoTime object. A LogoTime can be a DATETIME, a DATE, or a DAY:

    • A DATEIME is a fully specified instant in time, with precision down to a millisecond (e.g. January 2, 2000 at 3:04am and 5.678 seconds).
    • A DATE is a fully specified day in time but lacks any information about the time of day (e.g. January 2, 2000).
    • A DAY is a generic date that does not specify a year (e.g. January 2).

    The behavior of the time extension primitives depend on which variety of LogoTime you are storing. For example, the difference between two DATETIMES will have millisecond resolution, while the difference between two DATES or two DAYS will only have resolution to the nearest whole day.

    As another example, a DAY representing 01/01 is always considered to be before 12/31. Because there's no wrapping around for DAYs, they are only useful if your entire model occurs within one year and doesn't pass from December to January. If you need to wrap, use a DATE and pick a year for your model, even if there's no basis in reality for that year.

  • You create LogoTime objects by passing a string - The time:create primitive was designed to both follow the standard used by joda-time, and to make date time parsing more convenient by allowing a wider range of delimiters and formats. For example, the following are all valid DATETIME strings:

    • "2000-01-02T03:04:05.678"
    • "2000-01-02T3:04:05.678"
    • "2000-01-02 03:04:05"
    • "2000-01-02 3:04:05"
    • "2000-01-02 03:04"
    • "2000-01-02 3:04"
    • "2000-01-02 03"
    • "2000-01-02 3"
    • "2000/01/02 03:04:05.678"
    • "2000-1-02 03:04:05.678"
    • "2000-01-2 03:04:05.678"
    • "2000-1-2 03:04:05.678"

    The following are all valid DATE strings:

    • "2000-01-02"
    • "2000-01-2"
    • "2000-1-02"
    • "2000/1/02"

    The following are all valid DAY strings:

    • "01-02"
    • "01-2"
    • "1-02"
    • "1/2"

    Note that if you do not include a time in your string, the time extension will assume you want a DATE. If you want a DATETIME that happens to be at midnight, specify the time as zeros: "2000-01-02 00:00".

  • Time extension recognizes "period types" - In order to make it easy to specify a time period like "2 days" or "4 weeks", the time extension will accept strings to specify a period type. The following is a table of the period types and strings that time recognizes (note: any of these period type strings can be pluralized and are case insensitive):

    PERIOD TYPE Valid string specifiers
    YEAR "year"
    MONTH "month"
    WEEK "week"
    DAY "day", "dayofmonth", "dom"
    DAYOFYEAR "dayofyear", "doy", "julianday", "jday"
    DAYOFWEEK "dayofweek", "dow", "weekday", "wday"
    HOUR "hour"
    MINUTE "minute"
    SECOND "second"
    MILLI "milli"
  • Time extension has millisecond resolution - This is a fundamental feature of Joda Time and cannot be changed. The biggest reason Joda Time does not support micro or nano seconds is performance: going to that resolution would require the use of BigInts which would substantially slow down computations. Read more on this topic.

  • Daylight savings time is ignored - All times are treated as local, or "zoneless", and daylight savings time (DST) is ignored. It is assumed that most NetLogo users don't need to convert times between time zones or be able to follow the rules of DST for any particular locale. Instead, users are much more likely to need the ability to load a time series and perform date and time operations without worrying about when DST starts and whether an hour of their time series will get skipped in the spring or repeated in the fall. It should be noted that Joda Time definitely can handle DST for most locales on Earth, but that capability is not extended to NetLogo here and won't be unless by popular demand.

  • Leap days are included - While we simplify things by excluding time zones and DST, leap days are kept to allow users to reliably use real world time series in their NetLogo model.

  • LogoTimes are mutable when anchored - If you anchor a LogoTime (using the time:anchor-to-ticks primitive) you end up with a variable whose value changes as the value of Netlogo ticks changes. Say you have an anchored variable called "anchored-time" and you assign it to another variable "set new-time anchored-time", your new variable will also be mutable and change with ticks. If what you want is a snapshot of the anchored-time that doesn't change, then use the time:copy primitive: "set new-time time:copy anchored-time".

  • Decimal versus whole number time periods - In this extension, decimal values can be used by the plus and anchor-to-ticks primitives for seconds, minutes, hours, days, and weeks (milliseconds can't be fractional because they are the base unit of time). These units are treated as durations because they can unambiguously be converted from a decimal number to a whole number of milliseconds. But there is ambiguity in how many milliseconds there are in 1 month or 1 year, so month and year increments are treated as periods which are by definition whole number valued. So if you use the time:plus primitive to add 1 month to the date "2012-02-02", you will get "2012-03-02"; and if you add another month you get "2012-04-02" even though February and March have different numbers of days. If you try to use a fractional number of months or years, it will be rounded to the nearest integer and then added. If you want to increment a time variable by one and a half 365-day years, then just increment by 1.5 * 365 days instead of 1.5 years.

  • LogoTimeSeries must have unique LogoTimes - The LogoTimes in the timestamp column of the LogoTimeSeries must be unique. In other words, there cannot be more than one row indexed by a particular timestamp. If you add a row to a LogoTimeSeries using a LogoTime already in the table, the data in the table will be overwritten by the new row.

  • LogoTimeSeries columns are numeric or string valued - The data columns in a LogoTimeSeries will be typed as numbers or strings depending on the value in the first row of the input file (or the first row added using time:ts-add-row). A number added to a string column will be encoded as a string and a string added to a number column will throw an error.

  • LogoEvents are dispatched in order, and ties go to the first created - If multiple LogoEvents are scheduled for the exact same time, they are dispatched (executed) in the order in which they were added to the discrete event schedule.

  • LogoEvents can be created for an agentset - When an agentset is scheduled to perform an anonymous command (before NetLogo 6.0 these were called tasks), the individual agents execute the procedure in a non-random order, which is different from ask which shuffles the agents. Of note is that this is the only way I'm aware of to accomplish an unsorted ask, in NetLogo while still allowing for the death and creation of agents during execution. Some simple benchmarking indicates that not shuffling can reduce execution time by ~15%. To shuffle the order, use the add-shuffled primitive, which will execute the actions in random order with low overhead.

  • LogoEvents won't break if an agent dies - If an agent is scheduled to perform an anonymous command in the future but dies before the event is dispatched, the event will be silently skipped.

  • LogoEvents can be scheduled to occur at a LogoTime - LogoTimes are acceptable alternatives to specifying tick numbers for when events should occur. However, for this to work the discrete event schedule must be "anchored" to a reference time so it knows a relationship between ticks and time. See time:anchor-schedule* below for an example of anchoring.

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Date/Time Utilities


time:create time-string

Reports a LogoTime created by parsing the time-string argument. A LogoTime is a custom data type included with this extension, used to store time in the form of a DATETIME, a DATE, or a DAY. All other primitives associated with this extension take one or more LogoTimes as as an argument. See the "Behavior" section above for more information on the behavior of LogoTime objects.

;; Create a datetime, a date, and a day
let t-datetime time:create "2000-01-02 03:04:05.678"
let t-date time:create "2000/01/02"
let t-day time:create "01-02"


time:create-with-format time-string format-string

Like time:create, but reports a LogoTime created by parsing the time-string argument using the format-string argument as the format specifier.

;; Create a datetime, a date, and a day using American convention for dates: Month/Day/Year
let t-datetime time:create-with-format "01-02-2000 03:04:05.678" "MM-dd-YYYY HH:mm:ss.SSS"
let t-date time:create-with-format "01/02/2000" "MM/dd/YYYY"
let t-day time:create-with-format "01-02" "MM-dd"

See the following link for a full description of the available format options:



time:show logotime string-format

Reports a string containing the logotime formatted according the string-format argument.

let t-datetime time:create "2000-01-02 03:04:05.678"

print time:show t-datetime "EEEE, MMMM d, yyyy"
;; prints "Sunday, January 2, 2000"

print time:show t-datetime "yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm"
;; prints "2000-01-02 03:04"

See the following link for a full description of the available format options:



time:get period-type-string logotime

Retrieves the numeric value from the logotime argument corresponding to the period-type-string argument. For DATETIME variables, all period types are valid; for DATEs, only period types of a day or higher are valid; for DAYs, the only valid period types are "day" and "month".

let t-datetime (time:create "2000-01-02 03:04:05.678")

print time:get "year" t-datetime
;;prints "2000"

print time:get "month" t-datetime
;;prints "1"

print time:get "dayofyear" t-datetime
;;prints "2"

print time:get "hour" t-datetime
;;prints "3"

print time:get "second" t-datetime
;;prints "5"


time:plus logotime number period-type-string

Reports a LogoTime resulting from the addition of some time period to the logotime argument. The time period to be added is specified by the number and period-type-string arguments. Valid period types are YEAR, MONTH, WEEK, DAY, DAYOFYEAR, HOUR, MINUTE, SECOND, and MILLI.

let t-datetime (time:create "2000-01-02 03:04:05.678")

;; Add some period to the datetime
print time:plus t-datetime 1.0 "seconds"  
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2000-01-02 03:04:06.678}}"

print time:plus t-datetime 1.0 "minutes"  
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2000-01-02 03:05:05.678}}"

print time:plus t-datetime (60.0 * 24) "minutes"  
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2000-01-03 03:04:05.678}}"

print time:plus t-datetime 1 "week"  
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2000-01-09 03:04:05.678}}"

print time:plus t-datetime 1.0 "weeks"  
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2000-01-09 03:04:05.678}}"

print time:plus t-datetime 1.0 "months"  
;; note that decimal months or years are rounded to the nearest whole number
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2000-02-02 03:04:05.678}}"

print time:plus t-datetime 1.0 "years"   
;; prints "{{time:logotime 2001-01-02 03:04:05.678}}"


time:is-before logotime1 logotime2
time:is-after logotime1 logotime2
time:is-equal logotime1 logotime2
time:is-between logotime1 logotime2 logotime3

Reports a boolean for the test of whether logotime1 is before/after/equal-to logotime2. The is-between primitive returns true if logotime1 is between logotime2 and logotime3. All LogoTime arguments must be of the same variety (DATETIME, DATE, or DAY).

print time:is-before (time:create "2000-01-02") (time:create "2000-01-03")
;;prints "true"

print time:is-before (time:create "2000-01-03") (time:create "2000-01-02")
;;prints "false"

print time:is-after  (time:create "2000-01-03") (time:create "2000-01-02")
;;prints "true"

print time:is-equal  (time:create "2000-01-02") (time:create "2000-01-02")
;;prints "true"

print time:is-equal  (time:create "2000-01-02") (time:create "2000-01-03")
;;prints "false"

print time:is-between (time:create "2000-03-08")  (time:create "1999-12-02") (time:create "2000-05-03")
;;prints "true"


time:difference-between logotime1 logotime2 period-type-string

Reports the amount of time between logotime1 and logotime2 in units of period-type-string. Note that if the period type is YEAR or MONTH, then the reported value will be a whole number based soley on the month and year components of the LogoTimes. If logotime2 is smaller (earlier than) logotime1, the reported value will be negative.

This primitive is useful for recording the elapsed time between model events because (unlike time:get) it reports the total number of time units, including fractions of units. For example, if start-time is a LogoTime variable for the time a simulation starts and end-time is when the simulation stops, then use show time:difference-between start-time end-time "days" to see how many days were simulated.

print time:difference-between (time:create "2000-01-02 00:00") (time:create "2000-02-02 00:00") "days"
;;prints "31"

print time:difference-between (time:create "2000-01-02") (time:create "2001-02-02") "days"
;;prints "397"

print time:difference-between (time:create "01-02") (time:create "01-01") "hours"
;;prints "-24"

print time:difference-between (time:create "2000-01-02") (time:create "2000-02-15") "months"
;;prints "1"


time:anchor-to-ticks logotime number period-type

Reports a new LogoTime object which is "anchored" to the native time tracking mechanism in NetLogo (i.e the value of ticks). Once anchored, this LogoTime object will always hold the value of the current time as tracked by ticks. Any of the three varieties of LogoTime can be achored to the tick. The time value of the logotime argument is assumed to be the time at tick zero. The number and period-type arguments describe the time represented by one tick (e.g. a tick can be worth 1 day or 2 hours or 90 seconds, etc.)

Note: time:anchor-to-ticks is a one-way coupling. Changes to the value of ticks (e.g. when using the tick or tick-advance commands) will be reflected in the anchored LogoTime, but do not expect changes to the value of ticks after making changes to the anchored LogoTime. Instead, use the discrete event scheduling capability and the time:anchor-schedule command to influence the value of ticks through the use of LogoTimes.

set tick-datetime time:anchor-to-ticks (time:create "2000-01-02 03:04:05.678") 1 "hour"
set tick-date time:anchor-to-ticks (time:create "2000-01-02") 2 "days"
set tick-day time:anchor-to-ticks (time:create "01-02") 3 "months"

print (word "tick " ticks)  ;; prints "tick 1" 
print (word "tick-datetime " tick-datetime)  ;; prints "tick-dateime {{time:logotime 2000-01-02 04:04:05.678}}"
print (word "tick-date " tick-date)  ;; prints "tick-date {{time:logotime 2000-01-04}}"
print (word "tick-day " tick-day)  ;; prints "tick-day {{time:logotime 04-02}}"

print (word "tick " ticks)  ;; prints "tick 2" 
print (word "tick-datetime " tick-datetime)  ;; prints "tick-dateime {{time:logotime 2000-01-02 05:04:05.678}}"
print (word "tick-date " tick-date)  ;; prints "tick-date {{time:logotime 2000-01-06}}""
print (word "tick-day " tick-day)  ;; prints "tick-day {{time:logotime 07-02}}"" 

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time:copy logotime

Returns a new LogoTime object that holds the same date/time as the logotime argument. The copy will not be anchored regardless of the argument, making this the recommended way to store a snapshot of an anchored LogoTime.

set tick-date time:anchor-to-ticks (time:create "2000-01-02") 2 "days"
print (word "tick " ticks)  ;; prints "tick 1" 
print (word "tick-date " tick-date)  ;; prints "tick-date {{time:logotime 2000-01-04}}"

set store-date time:copy tick-date

print (word "tick " ticks)  ;; prints "tick 1" 
print (word "tick-date " tick-date)  ;; prints "tick-date {{time:logotime 2000-01-06}}"
print (word "store-date " store-date)  ;; prints "store-date {{time:logotime 2000-01-04}}"

Time Series Tool


time:ts-create column-name-list

Reports a new, empty LogoTimeSeries. The number of data columns and their names are defined by the number and values of column-name-list parameter, which must be a list of strings. The first column, which contains dates or times, is created automatically.

let turtle-move-times (time:ts-create ["turtle-show" "new-xcor" "new-ycor"])


time:ts-add logotimeseries row-list

Adds a record to an existing LogoTimeSeries. The row-list should be a list containing a LogoTime as the first element and the rest of the data corresponding to the number of columns in the LogoTimeSeries object. Columns are either numeric or string valued (note: if you add a string to a numeric column an error occurs).

;; A turtle records the time and destination each time it moves
;; model-time is a DATETIME variable anchored to ticks.
time:ts-add-row turtle-move-times (sentence model-time who xcor ycor)


time:ts-get logotimeseries logotime column-name

Reports the value from the column-name column of the logotimeseries in the row matching logotime. If there is not an exact match with logotime, the row with the nearest date/time will be used. If "ALL" or "all" is specified as the column name, then the entire row, including the logotime, is returned as a list.

print time:ts-get ts (time:create "2000-01-01 10:00:00") "flow"
;; prints the value from the flow column in the row containing a time stamp of 2000-01-01 10:00:00


time:ts-get-interp logotimeseries logotime column-name

Behaves almost identical to time:ts-get, but if there is not an exact match with the date/time stamp, then the value is linearly interpolated between the two nearest values. This command will throw an exception if the values in the column are strings instead of numeric.

print time:ts-get-interp ts (time:create "2000-01-01 10:30:00") "flow"


time:ts-get-exact logotimeseries logotime column-name

Behaves almost identical to time:ts-get, but if there is not an exact match with the date/time stamp, then an exception is thrown.

print time:ts-get-exact ts (time:create "2000-01-01 10:30:00") "flow"


time:ts-get-range logotimeseries logotime1 logotime2 column-name

Reports a list of all of the values from the column-name column of the logotimeseries in the rows between logotime1 and logotime2 (inclusively). If "ALL" or "all" is specified as the column name, then a list of lists is reported, with one sub-list for each column in logotimeseries, including the date/time column. If "LOGOTIME" or "logotime" is specified as the column name, then the date/time column is returned.

print time:ts-get-range time-series time:create "2000-01-02 12:30:00" time:create "2000-01-03 00:30:00" "all"


time:ts-load filepath

Loads time series data from a text input file (comma or tab separated) and reports a new LogoTimeSeries object that contains the data.

let ts time:ts-load "time-series-data.csv"

Each input file and LogoTimeSeries object can contain one or more variables, which are accessed by the column names provided on the first line of the file. The first line of the file must therefore start with the the word “time” or “date” (this word is actually unimportant as it is ignored), followed by the names of the variables (columns) in the file. Do not use "all" or "ALL" for a column name as this keyword is reserved (see time:ts-get below).

The first column of the file must be timestamps that can be parsed by this extension (see the behavior section for acceptable string formats). Finally, if the timestamps do not appear in chronological order in the text file, they will be automatically sorted into order when loaded.

The first line(s) of an input file can include comments delineated by semicolons, just as NetLogo code can.

The following is an example of hourly river flow and water temperature data that is formatted correctly:

; Flow and temperature data for Big Muddy River
2000-01-01 00:00:00,1000,10
2000-01-01 01:00:00,1010,11
2000-01-01 03:00:00,1030,13

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time:ts-load filepath format-string

Identical to time:ts-load except that the first column is parsed based on the format-string specifier.

let ts time:ts-load "time-series-data-custom-date-format.csv" "dd-MM-YYYY HH:mm:ss"

See the following link for a full description of the available format options:



time:ts-write logotimeseries filepath

Writes the time series data to a text file in CSV (comma-separated) format.

time:ts-write ts "time-series-output.csv"

The column names will be written as the header line, for example:

2000-01-01 00:00:00,1000,10
2000-01-01 01:00:00,1010,11
2000-01-01 03:00:00,1030,13

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Discrete Event Scheduler


time:anchor-schedule logotime number period-type

Anchors the discrete event schedule to the native time tracking mechanism in NetLogo (i.e the value of ticks). Once anchored, LogoTimes can be used for discrete event scheduling (e.g. schedule agent 3 to perform some anonymous command on June 10, 2013). The value of the logotime argument is assumed to be the time at tick zero. The number and period-type arguments describe the worth of one tick (e.g. a tick can be worth 1 day, 2 hours, 90 seconds, etc.)

time:anchor-schedule time:create "2013-05-30" 1 "hour"


time:schedule-event agent anonymous-command tick-or-time
time:schedule-event agentset anonymous-command tick-or-time
time:schedule-event "observer" anonymous-command tick-or-time

Add an event to the discrete event schedule. The order in which events are added to the schedule is not important; they will be dispatched in order of the times specified as the last argument of this command. An agent, an agentset, or the string "observer" can be passed as the first argument along with an anonymous command as the second. The anonymous command is executed by the agent(s) or the observer at tick-or-time (either a number indicating the tick or a LogoTime), which is a time greater than or equal to the present moment (>= ticks).*.

If tick-or-time is a LogoTime, then the discrete event schedule must be anchored (see time:anchor-schedule). If tick-or-time is in the past (less than the current tick/time), a run-time error is raised. (The is-after primitive can be used to defend against this error: add an event to the schedule only if its scheduled time is after the current time.)

Once an event has been added to the discrete event schedule, there is no way to remove or cancel it.

time:schedule-event turtles [ [] -> go-forward ] 1.0
time:schedule-event turtles [ [] -> fd 1 ] 1.0
time:schedule-event "observer" [ [] -> print "hello world" ] 1.0


time:schedule-event-shuffled agentset anonymous-command tick-or-time

Add an event to the discrete event schedule and shuffle the agentset during execution. This is identical to time:schedule-event but the individuals in the agentset execute the action in randomized order.

time:schedule-event-shuffled turtles [ [] -> go-forward ] 1.0


time:schedule-repeating-event agent anonymous-command tick-or-time interval-number
time:schedule-repeating-event agentset anonymous-command tick-or-time-number interval-number
time:schedule-repeating-event agent "observer" tick-or-time interval-number
time:schedule-repeating-event-with-period agent anonymous-command tick-or-time period-duration period-type-string
time:schedule-repeating-event-with-period agentset anonymous-command tick-or-time-number period-duration period-type-string
time:schedule-repeating-event-with-period "observer" anonymous-command tick-or-time period-duration period-type-string

Add a repeating event to the discrete event schedule. This primitive behaves almost identically to time:schedule-event except that after the event is dispatched it is immediately rescheduled interval-number ticks into the future using the same agent (or agentset) and *anonymous-command *. If the schedule is anchored (see time:anchor-schedule), then time:schedule-repeating-event-with-period can be used to expressed the repeat interval as a period (e.g. 1 "day" or 2.5 "hours"). Warning: repeating events can cause an infinite loop to occur if you execute the schedule with time:go. To avoid infinite loops, use time:go-until.

time:schedule-repeating-event turtles [ [] -> go-forward ] 2.5 1.0
time:schedule-repeating-event-with-period turtles [ [] -> go-forward ] 2.5 1.0 "hours"


time:schedule-repeating-event-shuffled agentset anonymous-command tick-or-time-number interval-number
time:schedule-repeating-event-shuffled-with-period agentset anonymous-command tick-or-time-number interval-number

Add a repeating event to the discrete event schedule and shuffle the agentset during execution. This is identical to time:schedule-repeating-event but the individuals in the agentset execute the action in randomized order. If the schedule is anchored (see time:anchor-schedule), then time:schedule-repeating-event-shuffled-with-period can be used to expressed the repeat interval as a period (e.g. 1 "day" or 2.5 "hours"). Warning: repeating events can cause an infinite loop to occur if you execute the schedule with time:go. To avoid infinite loops, use time:go-until.

time:schedule-repeating-event-shuffled turtles [ [] -> go-forward ] 2.5 1.0
time:schedule-repeating-event-shuffled-with-period turtles [ [] -> go-forward ] 2.5 1.0 "month"



Clear all events from the discrete event schedule.




Dispatch all of the events in the discrete event schedule. When each event is executed, NetLogo’s tick counter (and any LogoTime variables anchored to ticks) is updated to that event’s time. It's important to note that this command will continue to dispatch events until the discrete event schedule is empty. If repeating events are in the discrete event schedule or if procedures in the schedule end up scheduling new events, it's possible for this to become an infinite loop.



time:go-until halt-tick-or-time

Dispatch all of the events in the discrete event schedule that are scheduled for times up until halt-tick-or-time. If the temporal extent of your model is known in advance, this variant of time:go is the recommended way to dispatch your model. This primitive can also be used to execute all the events scheduled before the next whole tick, which is useful if other model actions take place on whole ticks.

time:go-until 100.0
;; Execute events up to tick 100

time:go-until time:plus t-datetime 1.0 "hour" 
;; Execute events within the next hour; t-datetime is the current time.



Reports as a string all of the events in the schedule in tab-separated format with three columns: tick,semi-colon-separated-list-of-agents,anonymous-command.

print time:show-schedule 



Reports the number of events in the discrete event schedule.

if time:size-of-schedule > 0[

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Use the NETLOGO environment variable to tell the Makefile which NetLogoLite.jar to compile against. For example:

NETLOGO=/Applications/NetLogo\\\ 5.0 make

If compilation succeeds, time.jar will be created. See Installation for instructions on where to put your compiled extension.


Colin Sheppard and Steve Railsback

Feedback? Bugs? Feature Requests?

Please visit the github issue tracker to submit comments, bug reports, or feature requests. I'm also more than willing to accept pull requests.


This extension is in part powered by Joda Time and inspired by the Ecoswarm Time Manager Library. Allison Campbell helped benchmark discrete event scheduling versus static scheduling.

Terms of Use


The NetLogo dynamic scheduler extension is in the public domain. To the extent possible under law, Colin Sheppard and Steve Railsback have waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights.

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