simulation, computer

simulation, computer

Use of a computer-generated system to represent the dynamic responses and behaviour of a real or proposed system. A mathematical description of a system is developed as a computer program that uses equations to represent the functional relationships within the system. When the program is run, the resulting mathematical dynamics form an analog, usually represented graphically, of the behaviour of the modeled system. Variables in the program can be adjusted to simulate varying conditions in the system. Computer simulations are used to study the behaviour of objects or systems that cannot be easily or safely tested in real life, such as weather patterns or a nuclear blast. Simpler simulations performed by personal computers are business models and geometric models. See also scientific visualization.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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