MathGroup Archive 1996

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Re: Books

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg4831] Re: Books
  • From: "Harry A. Smith" <hasmith at>
  • Date: Fri, 20 Sep 1996 01:12:47 -0400
  • Organization: Florida State University
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

richard j. gaylord wrote:

> hi:
> i would suggest that for a beginner in the area of simulations, you look
> at "MODELING NATURE: Cellular Automata Simulations with Mathematica"
> first.
> the approach taken there requires MUCH less programming background than
> my  first simulation book.
> note: the second book is not simply an extension of the firstbook. the
> first book is essentially a hodgepodge of interesting simualation
> programs, each with its own approach. in contrast, the second book
> presents as ingle unified approach to the type of simulation modeling
> known as cellular simulations.
> -richard-
> --
> "if you're not programming functionally, then you're programming dysfunctionally"

Just a few comments:
1. Richard's book is good for doing CA modelling and can be used with
profit for learning to develop spatial models as well. I picked up a
number of pointers on how to implement some tricky ideas.
2. However, for implementations of solutions to standard Differential
Equations, Abell and Braselton's "Differential Equations With
Mathematica" is still probably a good choice to understand how to do
standard math of this type using mma. 
3. A better choice would be to get both books and compare the techniques
and implementations, then you will have the best of all worlds!

As a final note: Richard's book comes with code on a disk, the Abell and
Braselton book does not.


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