Anonymous Monk has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

I'm planning on writing a program that when given values for survival rate, reproduction rate, food availability and so on, will simulate the dynamics of a population of Norwegian wolves. Is there anyone who has any experience with such programming in perl? Or if perl isn't a suitable language for this task, what is? -Thomax

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: Population dynamics simulation
by Anonymous Monk on Jan 22, 2000 at 03:15 UTC
    Probably the biggest help you could get would be from a college level calculus professor. I'm taking a class called second year systems dynamics and we haven't seen one equation yet. Maybe check a book out from the library on "elementary differential equations" and look up numerical approximation. As for programming it in perl, I'm not the one to ask.
Re: Population dynamics simulation
by vroom (His Eminence) on Jan 20, 2000 at 22:03 UTC
    I'm not completely sure of what you want to do exactly perhaps you could clarify some. It sounds to me that your big issues are going to be math calculations, and possibly recording, reading, and logging information. All things Perl is perfectly suited for. Plus it would probably make it really easy to add a web interface so anyone can easily use your simulation software.
Re: Population dynamics simulation
by Crulx (Monk) on Jan 20, 2000 at 23:40 UTC
    How large or involved of a project is this going to be?
    Honestly, this sounds a bit like the Wolves & Caraboo problem that all beginning computer science students do. *grin* There are several features in Perl that make doing things like this fun. Vroom mentioned several of them. I would include on this Perl's easy to use object oriented syntax if you actually plan to make this a large project. Correctlty designed, it would make loading different species into the simulation easier, running controled experiments on your model easier, and compairing results to a control run easier. If you run in to any specific issues, please stop back!