102 lab1

Notes on Lab #1

  • If you prefer to work on a Mac, just do a Spotlight search for Vensim. Otherwise, launch a browser and log onto The Stable, choose Science Applications, and once you’re up an running, look for Vensim in the Start menu / All Programs.
  • You can get the detailed lab instructions here.
  • Don’t worry if some of the math concepts (differential equation, integration) are unfamiliar to you. We will cover these in class soon.
  • You don’t have to answer the Quick Review questions, but make sure to do the work that they tell you.
  • Don’t worry if Vensim doesn’t behave exactly as the authors specify. I couldn’t get the bidirectional arrows to work, for example. As with many software programs, you may have to experiment a bit to get things to work.
  • When you get to the end of the Graphs section (page 16), don’t print the graph. Instead, use the Export window contents (clipboard) icon on your graph to save the graph to the clipboard. Make sure that you’re seeing a graph that has both the variables (growth and population) visible separately, as red and blue lines (or lines distinguished in some other visual way). Then create a new MS Word document and paste the graph (CTRL-V) into it. Then put your name and other identifying information (date, class) at the top. This will be your writeup. Remember, before submitting your writeup, convert it to PDF using the “Save as / PDF” feature in MS Word. As I mentioned in class, you will get no credit for submitting a Word document; you must turn in a PDF..
  • When you get to the end of the Tables section (bottom of p. 17), do the same thing for the modified table as you did for the graph: instead of printing it, copy it to the clipboard and paste it into your writeup. Make sure that your table is the modified one generated in Quick Review Question 20.
  • When you get to the end of the lab, make sure that your model has the slider visible in it. Save it one more time. Then submit your properly-named model (.MDL) file to the Sakai dropbox (e.g., mine would be called levys_lab1.mdl).
  • Polonium-210 was in the news in 2006. For extra credit, add a sentence or two to your writeup explaining why.
  • Finally, submit your properly-named writeup (.PDF) file to the turnin folder (e.g., mine would be called levys_lab1.pdf).