sim·​u·​la·​tion | \ ˌsim-yə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce simulation (audio) \

Definition of simulation

1 : the act or process of simulating
2 : a sham object : counterfeit
3a : the imitative representation of the functioning of one system or process by means of the functioning of another a computer simulation of an industrial process
b : examination of a problem often not subject to direct experimentation by means of a simulating device

Examples of simulation in a Sentence

a computer simulation of spaceflight a simulation of the planet's surface They use computer simulation to predict weather conditions.
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Recent Examples on the Web Some of the most amazing ones are a digital clock, a simulation of Life inside Life, and self-replicators. New York Times, "The Lasting Lessons of John Conway’s Game of Life," 23 Dec. 2020 In due time, with the help of VR headsets and high-tech sound gear with advanced 3-D sound processing, the simulation of live concerts will transcend their own musicality and produce ravishing new expressions of art. Daniel Vnukowski, Los Angeles Times, "As a concert pianist, the stage is my life. But the pandemic taught me to love the livestream," 22 Dec. 2020 In 1991, a company called Virtuality began manufacturing human-sized VR gaming cockpits with robot shoot-em-ups and simulation games that would eventually populate malls across the US. Cecilia D'anastasio, Wired, "How Video Game Historians Resurrected Sega's Lost VR Headset," 20 Nov. 2020 That was meant to be the world’s weirdest, laziest simulation of an open water swim ever, just the first leg of my fake triathlon. Rob Verger, Popular Science, "This new workout watch can tell when you switch activities," 17 Nov. 2020 The next milestone for the mission will start on Nov. 16, when a five-day simulation of surface operations, including driving and collecting samples, is performed. Chris Ciaccia, Fox News, "NASA's Perseverance rover getting closer to Mars, potentially finding evidence of life," 12 Nov. 2020 To test this, the researchers used a computer-model simulation of an idealized hurricane—that is, a hurricane in a homogenous virtual setting rather than above a specific location on the Earth. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "Hurricanes might not be losing steam as fast as they used to," 11 Nov. 2020 The league contract with EA for simulation games is up for renewal after the 2021 season. Joe Reedy, The Denver Post, "NFL announces partnership with 2K Sports," 10 Mar. 2020 Some racing wheels come with pedal sets, adding another realistic dimension to racing simulation. Sian Babish,, "The best racing wheel," 12 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'simulation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of simulation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for simulation

Middle English simulacion, from Anglo-French, from Latin simulation-, simulatio, from simulare

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Time Traveler for simulation

Time Traveler

The first known use of simulation was in the 14th century

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Statistics for simulation

Last Updated

14 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Simulation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jan. 2021.

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How to pronounce simulation (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of simulation

: something that is made to look, feel, or behave like something else especially so that it can be studied or used to train people


sim·​u·​la·​tion | \ ˌsim-yə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce simulation (audio) \

Legal Definition of simulation

in the civil law of Louisiana
1 : the act of simulating
2 : a contract that by mutual agreement does not express the true intent of the parties — see also counterletter — compare disguised donation at donation

Note: Although a simulation does not have effect as between the parties, its lack of effect may not be asserted against third parties, such as creditors or bona fide purchasers, to avoid liability.

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