nmsBuilder is a freely-available software application to process biomedical data and create subject-specific musculoskeletal models for OpenSim.
Specifically, nmsBuilder allows users to perform the pre-processing phase of subject-specific musculoskeletal modeling from three-dimensional geometries and to create models in the OpenSim file format.
nmsBuilder can import different kinds of biomedical data, interactively visualize them, fuse them in a coherent representation, manipulate landmarks, surfaces and volumes, define and calculate musculoskeletal parameters, and finally create and export musculoskeletal models for the OpenSim software.
nmsBuilder is developed at the Bioengineering and Computing Laboratory (BIC) of the Rizzoli Orthopaedic Institute (Bologna, Italy), it has been presented in a reference publication, and is being increasingly used for research.
nmsBuilder features data objects called Virtual Medical Entities (VME), Views (interactive visualization of VME) and Operations (create/modify VME), integrated in a Graphical User Interface (GUI), to allow users to process biomedical data and create subject-specific musculoskeletal models for OpenSim.
Objects related to musculoskeletal modeling, e.g. surfaces, volumes, landmarks and coordinate systems, can be imported, created and modified. OpenSim model objects can be created, corresponding musculoskeletal parameters can be calculated, and the models can be exported in the OpenSim file format.
nmsBuilder was originally conceived as an outcome of the NMS Physiome European project (2010 - 2013).
nmsBuilder v1.0 was released in 2014 (including an interactive GUI, documentation and test data), and needed additional software to integrate with OpenSim.
nmsBuilder v2.0 features a major software refactoring, including integration of the OpenSim 3.3 library and Application Programming Interface and graphical restyling. Particularly, no additional software is needed to create and export OpenSim models, and the concept of the modeling pre-processing workflow is completely new. The result is a more stable, user-friendly and advanced version of the application.
nmsBuilder v2.1 features improvements to ensure compatibility of the exported models with OpenSim 4.0, software optimization and minor restyling. Updated documentation and test data to get started are also available with this release.
nmsBuilder is based on ALBA (Agile Library for Biomedical Applications) an open-source rapid application development framework for computer-aided medicine written in C++. The ALBA architecture is made of open source external libraries and components necessary to build applications. ALBA and related applications are developed through the Agile Software Development methodology, based on the approach of delivering software quickly and continuously by promoting customer involvement, continuous testing and planning, and close teamwork.