Information & Communication


Modeling and Simulation

Technical Applications

Summary

Modeling and simulation software allows the creation of software models, and subsequent exploration of them through simulation, of a variety of physical, social, communication, and other systems. Simulations may be time-stepped or event- based (or some combination of both). They may be localized, or distributed over a variety of cooperating "nodes" on a network.

Characteristics

Simulations may represent the formation of galaxies, molecular interactions, the complexities of social interactions, portions of our economy or specific markets, the operation of a specific aircraft for pilot training, the operation of an anthill, and a boundless set of other alternatives.

ImpactEconomy

If any nation creates a breakthrough in their effectiveness in creating complex software, it will give that nation a tremendous advantage in the world economy-- especially since software development is one of those symbolic jobs that can easily migrate (via data networks and telecommunications) to any country or locale on earth. U.S. national security depends critically on modeling and simulation software; this is emphasized by the recent creation of DOD's Defense Modeling and Simulation Office (DMSO) to coordinate the thousands of models and simulations, and the databases on which they depend, within our Defense establishment. Among the many goals of DMSO is better verification (assuring that the software is a faithful representation of the algorithms that it encodes), validation (assuring the simulation accurately represents the portion of reality it seeks to represent), and accreditation (assuring that the model and its data are appropriate to the task for which they are to be used).

WorldView

The nation that can simulate better can analyze more deeply, predict more accurately, train more thoroughly, and provide a more substantive education in the development and operation of complex systems. As such, it is a critical technology for analysis, training, education, and much of the advance of science and technology.