About TimeLike

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The origins of TimeLike trace back to the mid-1980s, when I (Steve Coy, the design lead for TimeLike) was working as part of a group at a company called R&D Associates doing high fidelity modeling and simulation in support of the Strategic Defense Initiative, aka “Star Wars”.  We were among the first large scale users of the SystemBuild™, the first commercial block diagram-oriented simulation tool.  Initially it seemed that SystemBuild might be well-suited to our needs, because it was based upon familiar concepts adapted from systems theory and systems engineering – systems and subsystems, inputs and outputs, and so forth – but in practice we found that it didn’t work nearly as well as we had hoped.  This, it soon became apparent, was because the design and implementation of the software framework did not preserve anything like the full generality of the original systems theory concepts.  In saying this, we do not mean to imply any criticism of SystemBuild’s designers; SystemBuild, like Simulink and a number of similar simulation tools, was specifically designed for modeling digital control systems; it was never intended for high fidelity modeling of the kinds of systems we needed to model, such as laser phased arrays and space-based neutral particle beams, and, later, military satellites and satellite communication systems.


In order to be able to build these kinds of models, we found we found we needed to develop our own simulation tools, able to model much more general kinds of system and subsystem behaviors and interactions.  This led us to develop a series of increasingly capable simulation frameworks over the subsequent years, the latest and most capable being TimeLike.


The development of TimeLike™ began in 2011, shortly after the founding of TimeLike Systems.  Steve Coy is the design lead, while Greg Gershanok is the implementation lead.  TimeLike bears a superficial resemblance to an earlier simulation framework, called Tempus™, developed by Coy, Gershanok and a number of others, while employed at MZA Associates Corporation.  However, despite the superficial resemblance and the common heritage, the two tools are very different “under the hood”, and TimeLike offers many capabilities not offered by Tempus, or by any other commercially available simulation framework that we know of.