Computer Models
Risks - Computer Models

Study Guide


  1. What is the difference between modeling and simulation?
  2. What is the difference between a computer model and a computer simulation?
  3. What is the difference between a static and a dynamic model?
  4. What are some of the mathematical mechanisms typically used to develop computer models?

Reliability and Limitations

  1. How reliable are computer models?  
  2. How consistent are computer models?
  3. What are some of the limitations of computer models and simulations?
  4. If a computer model fails, who is to blame?  Is it the programmer or the people who use the data?
  5. Who determines what types of models and theories we should use to help in the decision-making process for planetary concerns, such as global warming?  Why?
  6. Are computer models updated with the latest information and discoveries?
  7. What are some factors that determine whether we believe that the computer model is accurate or not?
  8. How can computer models help our society financially?
  9. Would you feel comfortable relying on a computer model to evaluate your finances with regard to investments?
  10. Are computers currently considered reliable evidence in our legal system?  If so, what are some examples?
  11. Modeling the Evolution of the Universe
  12. Super Computer Simulates Sun in 3-D



  1. How can computer modeling speed up engineering design processes?
  2. How can computer modeling save on engineering development costs?
  3. How is it beneficial to model machines before they are built?
  4. What are some types of computer models that deal with commerce both on and off the Internet?
  5. As we rely more on the Internet and other forms of technology to handle our finances, what are some of our "backup" plans?
  6. What are some pros and cons for the use of computer modeling for the weather?
  7. How could computer modeling and simulation prevent another disaster like at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001?

Index of Topic