Graphical User Interface

Due to the computational demands of simulating many individuals at high temporal and spatial resolution, Persefone.jl is primarily designed to be run non-interactively on an HPC. However, to allow interactive exploratory simulations to be conducted while learning or developing the model, a graphical user interface is available as an additional package: Persefone Desktop.

Install and run

For more detailed installation instructions, see here.

To install: Install Julia and download/clone the repository. Open a Julia REPL in the downloaded folder and execute the following to install all dependencies:

using Pkg

To run: Run desktop.jl. Alternatively, open a Julia REPL in this folder and run:

using Pkg
using PersefoneDesktop

Note: Due to the necessary pre-compilation done by Julia, installing and launching the application can take quite a long time. (Start-up time with desktop.jl is currently about 2 minutes.) We will reduce this as much as possible in future releases.

User interface

Persefone.jl Desktop screenshot

The main window component is the map view. This displays a land cover map of the simulated region: dark green are forests, light green grassland, yellow fields, red built-up areas and blue water. On it, little circles show the position of individual animals, with different species denoted by different colours.

Control bar

  • Back button: Rewind the simulation by one day.

  • Step button: Advance the simulation by one day.

  • Run button: Run the simulation until the button is pressed again or the end date is reached.

  • Progress bar: Shows the percentage of time elapsed between the start and end dates of the simulation.

  • Speed slider: Set the time delay between each simulation step when running.

  • Date: Shows the simulation date currently displayed on the map.


  • New simulation: Reset the model and start over.

  • Configure simulation: Change the model settings (not yet implemented).

  • Load saved state: Load a model object file saved by a previous simulation run.

  • Save current state: Save a model object file for later use.

  • Quit: Close the application.


  • Show population graph: Show a window with a graph of population sizes over time in the current model run.

  • Save simulation output: Save the model output data to file (saves both raw CSV data and generated graphics).


  • Documentation: Open the Persefone.jl online documentation in a browser.

  • Website: Open the main Persefone.jl website in a browser.

  • About: Show a window with core information about the application.