The BMI SpecΒΆ

In order to simplify conversion of an existing model to a reusable, plug-and-play model component, CSDMS has developed a simple interface called the Basic Model Interface or BMI that model developers are asked to implement. Recall that in this context an interface is a named set of functions with prescribed function names, argument types and return types. The BMI functions make the model self-describing and fully controllable by a modeling framework or application.

By design, the BMI functions are straightforward to implement in any language and use only simle (universal) data types. While the CSDMS model coupling framework supports C, C++, Fortran, Java, and Python, a BMI can described for any language. CSDMS provides example bindings for BMI in each of the above languages.

Also by design, the BMI functions are noninvasive. This means that a BMI-compliant model does not make any calls to other components or tools and is not modified to use any framework-specific data structures. BMI therefore introduces no dependencies into a model and the model can still be used in a stand-alone manner.