The MÆDEN simulator provides a testbed for studying problem solving in either a single or a multi-agent context. Both humans and artificial intelligence agents may interact with objects in the environment and with each other as they attempt to solve problems of varying difficulty. This Java-based simulator interacts asynchronously with multiple agent controllers written in any language using the standard socket layer. Agents may cooperate to solve problems or they may fight each other over limited resources. The testbed supports a simple visual sense of an agent's immediate surroundings, an olfactory sense indicating the direction of the food supply, an auditory perception of messages sent by other agents, and several other simple sensory features. Similarly, MÆDEN provides effector capabilities to move about the environment, manipulate tools and objects, attack other agents, and broadcast messages.
In terms of environment characteristics, MÆDEN is: