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Discrete versus continuous models

Posted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 7:31 pm
by Joseph Malkevitch
Dear Colleagues,

Continuous mathematics (notably Calculus) developed before many of the flourishing parts of discrete mathematics which started to come into their own after the development of the digital computer. Yet, often scientists model systems that seem at first blush to call for discrete models with continuous models, notably using differential equations, rather than discrete ones. Often discrete and continuous models predict quite different scenarios. A recent somewhat technical paper about this (Discrete and continuous description of physical phenomena) appears appears here.