Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Mapping the good and the bad of pandemic-related restrictions

Pandemics bring pain. But so do the prescriptions for containing them: From school closures to total lockdowns, every government-mandated approach to blunting the impact of COVID-19 involves a trade-off between lives saved ...


The (neuro)science of getting and staying motivated

There is no question that motivation is one of the hardest and yet important factors in life. It's the difference between success and failure, goal-setting and aimlessness, well-being and unhappiness. And yet, why is it so ...


Can sleep protect us from forgetting old memories?

From lowering your risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease to improving your concentration and overall daily performance, sleep has been proven to play a critical role in our health. In a new study, researchers at University ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Economists develop computer model for coronavirus measures

How do the restrictions imposed by the coronavirus crisis impact the economy? What measures are suitable to minimize the number of people infected and killed by SARS-CoV-2? And how are these two dynamics related? Academics ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Exploring the neural underpinnings of mind wandering

Mind wandering occurs when a person's attention shifts from things that are happening in her present environment to internal thought processes. For instance, while cooking or attending a lesson, one might start thinking about ...

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Computer simulation

A computer simulation, a computer model or a computational model is a computer program, or network of computers, that attempts to simulate an abstract model of a particular system. Computer simulations have become a useful part of mathematical modeling of many natural systems in physics (computational physics), chemistry and biology, human systems in economics, psychology, and social science and in the process of engineering new technology, to gain insight into the operation of those systems, or to observe their behavior.

Computer simulations vary from computer programs that run a few minutes, to network-based groups of computers running for hours, to ongoing simulations that run for days. The scale of events being simulated by computer simulations has far exceeded anything possible (or perhaps even imaginable) using the traditional paper-and-pencil mathematical modeling: over 10 years ago, a desert-battle simulation, of one force invading another, involved the modeling of 66,239 tanks, trucks and other vehicles on simulated terrain around Kuwait, using multiple supercomputers in the DoD High Performance Computer Modernization Program; a 1-billion-atom model of material deformation (2002); a 2.64-million-atom model of the complex maker of protein in all organisms, a ribosome, in 2005; and the Blue Brain project at EPFL (Switzerland), began in May 2005, to create the first computer simulation of the entire human brain, right down to the molecular level.

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