Release notes v1.4#

Here are the new features of the OpenQuake Engine, version 1.4.

  1. The main novelty is the full support for Ubuntu 14.04. Not only the engine works on Ubuntu 14.04 (that was already the case with OpenQuake 1.3) but we are also providing official packages for it. As of now, Ubuntu 14.04 is the recommended platform to run the engine. Ubuntu 12.04 is still supported and we will continue to support it for the near future.

  2. The biggest new feature is the introduction of a Web interface integrated in the engine code base. Users who do not like the command-line interface or users that want to manage engine calculations remotely using a Web interface can do so. The Web interface also supports authentication which can be used in multiple users situations. The documentation is still lacking, but we will add it shortly.

  3. A lot of minor improvements have been implemented, the engine has more validation checks and better error messages. In particular exposures containing assets with an attribute number are valid only if the number is a positive integer larger than zero. If you have an exposure with number="0" you must remove the number attribute in the XML. For compatibility with the past the engine does not reject such exposures yet, but it will in the next release.

  4. There is a new --run command to run hazard and risk together:

$ oq-engine --run job_haz.ini,job_risk.ini

Notice that there are no spaces around the comma.

  1. The procedure to associate hazard sites to the closest site parameters has been replaced with an equivalent one which does not rely on the existence of a geospatial database. If you have a site which is exactly at the same distance from two different site parameter locations, it could be that the new procedure associates different parameters than before. However the new approach is more consistent since it is using the same distance algorithm which is used in the rest of engine, specifically the routine openquake.hazardlib.geo.geodetic.min_distance.

  2. The parameter maximum_distance in the risk configuration files has been renamed to asset_hazard_distance, to avoid any possible confusion with the parameter maximum_distance in the hazard configuration files. If you have an old job_risk.ini file using the name maximum_distance you will get an error. The error message will clearly say that you must rename the parameter to asset_hazard_distance. Just to refresh your memory, here is the meaning of the two parameters. maximum_distance: if a site is outside this range from the sources, the hazard on that site is considered zero. asset_hazard_distance: if an asset is outside this range from the hazard sites, it is discarded in the risk computation and a warning is printed.

  3. The engine now supports GSIMs with a backarc param, i.e. Abrahamson et al. (2015).

  4. A few new CSV exporters have been added, in particular one for the aggregated loss curves.

  5. A lot of progress and bug fixing on the lite version of the engine has been made, which is now nearly feature-complete, but it is still marked as experimental. In particular the oq-lite info command has been extended and can give information about the logic tree of a computation without running the computation. The scenario calculators are able to manage multiple GSIMs at the same time, by producing an output file for each GSIM. The documentation is still lacking.

  6. Several new features have been implemented in hazardlib, see the corresponding changelog. In particular now hazardlib returns hazard curves and ground motion fields as arrays of records and not as dictionaries of arrays. This is of interest only to people using directly hazardlib, the change is invisible for people using the engine.

  7. Overall in this release more than 160 bugs/feature requests were fixed/implemented.