Talk:Computational science

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Computational Science/Scientific Computing[edit]

I switched the redirects. It seems to me that the name Computational Science is winning (e.g., JJL 23:54, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Advertising links[edit]

The page should not have advertising links. JJL removed one, rightly. I removed two more but JJL put them back. It is not acceptable to have links to specific colleges running computation courses. There are hundreds of such courses - why should two be singled out for free advertising on wikipedia? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:31, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

I don't think this is advertising in this case. Both links have extensive materials on computational science education, which is why I included them. (I'm not associated with either in any way.) Take a look at the links and let me know what you think. JJL (talk) 17:48, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
I think the bigger problem is the actual advertising. Currently there are links to websites that are nothing but fake reviews and links to commercial software. I am going to delete them as they are not real computational science resources but nothing more than ad sites. As for college courses linked, if they are reasonable, why not? I doubt that anyone will assume that links from WP are an official endorsement! (talk) 00:42, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

Higher quality article needed.[edit]

Computational science is a huge subject, and such a small article hardly does it any justice. Those who read this article would likely be left scratching their heads wondering exactly what the field really is. I suggest adding some real world examples of what is done. For example, some pictures/animations etc. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:59, 6 February 2010 (UTC)


I consider the SIAM reports fairly definitive; e.g. [1]: "CSE is a broad multidisciplinary area that encompasses applications in science/engineering, applied mathematics, numerical analysis, and computer science. Computer models and computer simulations have become an important part of the research repertoire, supplementing (and in some cases replacing) experimentation. Going from application area to computational results requires domain expertise, mathematical modeling, numerical analysis, algorithm development, software implementation, program execution, analysis, validation and visualization of results. CSE involves all of this." Is the definition in the article a reasonable summary of this? JJL (talk) 18:37, 21 November 2010 (UTC)

I found (pdf): "An inter-disciplinary approach to doing science on computers." As an ACM conference publication it is peer-reviewed. Not sure if the SIAM page was peer-reviewed. pgr94 (talk) 19:15, 21 November 2010 (UTC)

Only mathematical models?[edit]

Hi. The current state of the article narrows down computational science to the evaluation of mathematical models via computer simulation. You can do scientific research through agent-based models which are computational models but not necessarily mathematical one. It's not fair to ignore this type of modelling so wide-spread thorough scientific disciplines e.g. individual-based modelling in ecology, agent-based modelling in social sciences.

I would suggest replacing the mathematical model bias of the current state of the page with a more balanced one. Let me know what you think? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tg1w (talkcontribs) 09:23, 9 February 2012 (UTC)


I have just discovered this article. My immediate reaction is that, although giving a valuable introduction to the subject, it lacks historical perspective. In particular it gives the impression that computational science was born more or less simultaneously with the computer; yet at the same time saying that ‘numerical analysis’ underpins computational science (which of course it does).

My view is that the definition ‘computational science’ may be relatively new, but that it encompasses disciplines that go back for centuries, even (depending on one’s viewpoint) to the famous Babylonian tablet calculating the square root of 2. Thus for example the pre-computer interpolation techniques of numerical analysis used for the calculation of logarithmic and trigonometric tables can readily be seen to be ‘computational science’; as can all pre-c1945 applications such as designing airships or the cracking of codes.

I took an engineering degree in the 1950s where I never used more than a slide-rule (max 3 sig figs) and on rare occasions a book of 7-figure tables. Eight years later I was using a supercomputer to solve engineering design problems of unheard size and complexity. The term ‘computational scientist’ was yet to be invented, but I was such a person by virtue of my honours degree obtained with a slide-rule, not because I was using a supercomputer.

Could we perhaps begin to expand the article in this direction?? Flying Stag (talk) 22:12, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Computational science <- Theoretical computer science <- computer science[edit]

Hello, I'm writing concerning the sources on my claim that computational science is part of theoretical computer science which is in turn a branch of computer science. For me as a professional on the topic it is common sense but it will be difficult to prove my claim since there are no fixed definition for those things are are often a matter of personal opinion. However it would also be impossible to prove the opposite which was also unsourced in the article prior to my edits. Off the top of my head, a source for my claim would be this [2] published work in which the Computational science topic is clearly sub-categorized under theoretical computer science and in turn under computer science.

In some universities computational science is offered as a different course from theoretical computer science in the same way that applied mathematics is a separate course from discrete or theoretical mathematics. This doesn't mean however that they don't belong both in the wider branches of computer science and mathematics, respectively. To summarize my point: Computer science is a very wide scientific field and it's not about technical tasks such as fixing computers and making software as most people think. Computational science is a theoretical branch of this field. Raikkonen (talk) 15:24, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

I am not convinced that the claim is common sense even in the field of theoretical computer science. I'd say common sense is that computational science is an applied field concerned with solving mathematical problems in science and engineering with the aid of computers, and that it is more appropriately classified as a subfield of computational mathematics (which in turn can be seen as a field of applied mathematics and computer science). This view is supported by for instance this reference [3] on p. xi. If it should be regarded as a subfield of theoretical computer science instead, then it should at least be mentioned in that article, and the whole category tree needs to be changed for consistency. Isheden (talk) 15:47, 5 March 2012 (UTC)
After cross-checking the articles computer science and computational mathematics, it seems those articles support this view. Isheden (talk) 15:58, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

I agree with this citation. Basically I wanted to point out that both computational science and theoretical computer science are branches of the wider term "computer science" and not completely different disciplines as the article implied. Other than that I agree that computational science is not entirely a subfield of theoretical computer science because the former has applications whereas the latter does not. I'll make some edits to reflect this. Raikkonen (talk) 22:13, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

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