This book addresses key conceptual issues relating to the modern scientific and engineering use of computer simulations. It analyses a broad set of questions, from the nature of computer simulations to their epistemological power, including the many scientific, social and ethics implications of using computer simulations. The book is written in an easily accessible narrative, one that weaves together philosophical questions and scientific technicalities. It will thus appeal equally to all academic scientists, engineers, and researchers in industry (...) interested in questions related to the general practice of computer simulations. (shrink)
In an attempt to determine the epistemic status of computersimulation results, philosophers of science have recently explored the similarities and differences between computer simulations and experiments. One question that arises is whether and, if so, when, simulation results constitute novel empirical data. It is often supposed that computersimulation results could never be empirical or novel because simulations never interact with their targets, and cannot go beyond their programming. This paper argues against this (...) position by examining whether, and under what conditions, the features of empiricality and novelty could be displayed by computersimulation data. I show that, to the extent that certain familiar measurement results have these features, so can some computersimulation results. (shrink)
In this paper, we pursue three general aims: (I) We will define a notion of fundamental opacity and ask whether it can be found in High Energy Physics (HEP), given the involvement of machine learning (ML) and computer simulations (CS) therein. (II) We identify two kinds of non-fundamental, contingent opacity associated with CS and ML in HEP respectively, and ask whether, and if so how, they may be overcome. (III) We address the question of whether any kind of opacity, (...) contingent or fundamental, is unique to ML or CS, or whether they stand in continuity to kinds of opacity associated with other scientific research. (shrink)
Whereas computer simulations involve no direct physical interaction between the machine they are run on and the physical systems they are used to investigate, they are often used as experiments and yield data about these systems. It is commonly argued that they do so because they are implemented on physical machines. We claim that physicality is not necessary for their representational and predictive capacities and that the explanation of why computer simulations generate desired information about their target system (...) is only to be found in the detailed analysis of their semantic levels. We provide such an analysis and we determine the actual consequences of physical implementation for simulations. (shrink)
This article explores some of the roles of computersimulation in measurement. A model-based view of measurement is adopted and three types of measurement—direct, derived, and complex—are distinguished. It is argued that while computer simulations on their own are not measurement processes, in principle they can be embedded in direct, derived, and complex measurement practices in such a way that simulation results constitute measurement outcomes. Atmospheric data assimilation is then considered as a case study. This practice, (...) which involves combining information from conventional observations and simulation-based forecasts, is characterized as a complex measuring practice that is still under development. The case study reveals challenges that are likely to resurface in other measuring practices that embed computersimulation. It is also noted that some practices that embed simulation are difficult to classify; they suggest a fuzzy boundary between measurement and non-measurement. 1 Introduction2 A Contemporary View of Measurement3 Three Types of Measurement4 Can Computer Simulations Measure Real-World Target Systems?5 Case Study: Atmospheric Data Assimilation5.1 Why data assimilation?5.2 A complex measuring practice under development5.3 Epistemic iteration6 The Boundaries of Measurement7 Epistemology, Not Terminology. (shrink)
Computersimulation is shown to be philosophically interesting because it introduces a qualitatively new methodology for theory construction in science different from the conventional two components of "theory" and "experiment and/or observation". This component is "experimentation with theoretical models." Two examples from the physical sciences are presented for the purpose of demonstration but it is claimed that the biological and social sciences permit similar theoretical model experiments. Furthermore, computersimulation permits theoretical models for the evolution of (...) physical systems which use cellular automata rather than differential equations as their syntax. The great advantages of the former are indicated. (shrink)
Morrison points out many similarities between the roles of simulation models and other sorts of models in science. On the basis of these similarities she claims that running a simulation is epistemologically on a par with doing a traditional experiment and that the output of a simulation therefore counts as a measurement. I agree with her premises but reject the inference. The epistemological payoff of a traditional experiment is greater (or less) confidence in the fit between a (...) model and a target system. The source of this payoff is the existence of a causal interaction with the target system. A computer experiment, which does not go beyond the simulation system itself, lacks any such interaction. So computer experiments cannot confer any additional confidence in the fit (or lack thereof) between the simulation model and the target system. (shrink)
Computer simulations and experiments share many important features. One way of explaining the similarities is to say that computer simulations just are experiments. This claim is quite popular in the literature. The aim of this paper is to argue against the claim and to develop an alternative explanation of why computer simulations resemble experiments. To this purpose, experiment is characterized in terms of an intervention on a system and of the observation of the reaction. Thus, if (...) class='Hi'>computer simulations are experiments, either the computer hardware or the target system must be intervened on and observed. I argue against the first option using the non-observation argument, among others. The second option is excluded by e.g. the over-control argument, which stresses epistemological differences between experiments and simulations. To account for the similarities between experiments and computer simulations, I propose to say that computer simulations can model possible experiments and do in fact often do so. (shrink)
The question of where, between theory and experiment, computer simulations locate on the methodological map is one of the central questions in the epistemology of simulation. The two extremes on the map have them either be a kind of experiment in their own right, 317–329, 2005; Morrison Philosophical Studies, 143, 33–57, 2009; Morrison 2015; Massimi and Bhimji Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, 51, 71–81, 2015; Parker Synthese, (...) 169, 483–496, 2009) or just an argument executed with the aid of a computer. There exist multiple versions of the first kind of position, whereas the latter is rather unified. I will argue that, while many claims about the ‘experimental’ status of CSs seem unjustified, there is a variant of the first position that seems preferable. In particular I will argue that while CSs respect the logic of arguments, they neither agree with their pragmatics nor their epistemology. I will then lay out in what sense CSs can fruitfully be seen as experiments, and what features set them apart from traditional experiments nonetheless. I conclude that they should be seen as surrogate experiments, i.e. experiments executed consciously on the wrong kind of system, but with an exploitable connection to the system of interest. Finally, I contrast my view with that of Beisbart, according to which CSs are surrogates for experiments, arguing that this introduces an arbitrary split between CSs and other kinds of simulations. (shrink)
According to the Argument from Disagreement (AD) widespread and persistent disagreement on ethical issues indicates that our moral opinions are not influenced by moral facts, either because there are no such facts or because there are such facts but they fail to influence our moral opinions. In an innovative paper, Gustafsson and Peterson (Synthese, published online 16 October, 2010) study the argument by means of computersimulation of opinion dynamics, relying on the well-known model of Hegselmann and Krause (...) (J Artif Soc Soc Simul 5(3):1–33, 2002; J Artif Soc Soc Simul 9(3):1–28, 2006). Their simulations indicate that if our moral opinions were influenced at least slightly by moral facts, we would quickly have reached consensus, even if our moral opinions were also affected by additional factors such as false authorities, external political shifts and random processes. Gustafsson and Peterson conclude that since no such consensus has been reached in real life, the simulation gives us increased reason to take seriously the AD. Our main claim in this paper is that these results are not as robust as Gustafsson and Peterson seem to think they are. If we run similar simulations in the alternative Laputa simulation environment developed by Angere and Olsson (Angere, Synthese, forthcoming and Olsson, Episteme 8(2):127–143, 2011) considerably less support for the AD is forthcoming. (shrink)
Reasons are given to justify the claim that computer simulations and computational science constitute a distinctively new set of scientific methods and that these methods introduce new issues in the philosophy of science. These issues are both epistemological and methodological in kind.
This article provides a survey of some of the reasons why computational approaches have become a permanent addition to the set of scientific methods. The reasons for this require us to represent the relation between theories and their applications in a different way than do the traditional logical accounts extant in the philosophical literature. A working definition of computer simulations is provided and some properties of simulations are explored by considering an example from quantum chemistry.
There are a variety of topics in the philosophy of science that need to be rethought, in varying degrees, after one pays careful attention to the ways in which computer simulations are used in the sciences. There are a number of conceptual issues internal to the practice of computersimulation that can benefit from the attention of philosophers. This essay surveys some of the recent literature on simulation from the perspective of the philosophy of science and (...) argues that philosophers have a lot to learn by paying closer attention to the practice of simulation. (shrink)
After showing how Deborah Mayo’s error-statistical philosophy of science might be applied to address important questions about the evidential status of computersimulation results, I argue that an error-statistical perspective offers an interesting new way of thinking about computersimulation models and has the potential to significantly improve the practice of simulation model evaluation. Though intended primarily as a contribution to the epistemology of simulation, the analysis also serves to fill in details of Mayo’s (...) epistemology of experiment. (shrink)
The goal of the present article is to contribute to the epistemology and methodology of computer simulations. The central thesis is that the process of simulation modeling takes the form of an explorative cooperation between experimenting and modeling. This characteristic mode of modeling turns simulations into autonomous mediators in a specific way; namely, it makes it possible for the phenomena and the data to exert a direct influence on the model. The argumentation will be illustrated by a case (...) study of the general circulation models of meteorology, the major simulation models in climate research. (shrink)
This unique volume introduces and discusses the methods of validating computer simulations in scientific research. The core concepts, strategies, and techniques of validation are explained by an international team of pre-eminent authorities, drawing on expertise from various fields ranging from engineering and the physical sciences to the social sciences and history. The work also offers new and original philosophical perspectives on the validation of simulations. Topics and features: introduces the fundamental concepts and principles related to the validation of (...) class='Hi'>computer simulations, and examines philosophical frameworks for thinking about validation; provides an overview of the various strategies and techniques available for validating simulations, as well as the preparatory steps that have to be taken prior to validation; describes commonly used reference points and mathematical frameworks applicable to simulation validation; reviews the legal prescriptions, and the administrative and procedural activities related to simulation validation; presents examples of best practice that demonstrate how methods of validation are applied in various disciplines and with different types of simulation models; covers important practical challenges faced by simulation scientists when applying validation methods and techniques; offers a selection of general philosophical reflections that explore the significance of validation from a broader perspective. This truly interdisciplinary handbook will appeal to a broad audience, from professional scientists spanning all natural and social sciences, to young scholars new to research with computer simulations. Philosophers of science, and methodologists seeking to increase their understanding of simulation validation, will also find much to benefit from in the text. (shrink)
A number of recent discussions comparing computersimulation and traditional experimentation have focused on the significance of “materiality.” I challenge several claims emerging from this work and suggest that computersimulation studies are material experiments in a straightforward sense. After discussing some of the implications of this material status for the epistemology of computersimulation, I consider the extent to which materiality (in a particular sense) is important when it comes to making justified inferences (...) about target systems on the basis of experimental results. (shrink)
In this paper, I offer an inferential conception of computer simulations, emphasizing the role that simulations play as inferential devices to represent empirical phenomena. Three steps are involved in a simulation: an immersion step, a derivation step, and an interpretation and correction step. After presenting the view, I mention some cases, such as simulations of the current flow between silicon atoms and buckyballs as well as of genetic regulatory systems. I argue that the inferential conception accommodates the integration (...) of empirical and theoretical data; it makes sense of the role that is played by false traits in a simulation, andhighlights the similarities and differences between simulations and scientific instruments. (shrink)
The paper presents an argument for treating certain types of computersimulation as having the same epistemic status as experimental measurement. While this may seem a rather counterintuitive view it becomes less so when one looks carefully at the role that models play in experimental activity, particularly measurement. I begin by discussing how models function as “measuring instruments” and go on to examine the ways in which simulation can be said to constitute an experimental activity. By focussing (...) on the connections between models and their various functions, simulation and experiment one can begin to see similarities in the practices associated with each type of activity. Establishing the connections between simulation and particular types of modelling strategies and highlighting the ways in which those strategies are essential features of experimentation allows us to clarify the contexts in which we can legitimately call computersimulation a form of experimental measurement. (shrink)
It is often claimed that scientists can obtain new knowledge about nature by running computer simulations. How is this possible? I answer this question by arguing that computer simulations are arguments. This view parallels Norton’s argument view about thought experiments. I show that computer simulations can be reconstructed as arguments that fully capture the epistemic power of the simulations. Assuming the extended mind hypothesis, I furthermore argue that running the computersimulation is to execute the (...) reconstructing argument. I discuss some objections and reject the view that computer simulations produce knowledge because they are experiments. I conclude by comparing thought experiments and computer simulations, assuming that both are arguments. (shrink)
Computer simulations have conventionally been understood to be either extensions of formal methods such as mathematical models or as special cases of empirical practices such as experiments. Here, I argue that computer simulations are best understood as instruments. Understanding them as such can better elucidate their actual role as well as their potential epistemic standing in relation to science and other scientific methods, practices and devices.
This unique volume introduces and discusses the methods of validating computer simulations in scientific research. The core concepts, strategies, and techniques of validation are explained by an international team of pre-eminent authorities, drawing on expertise from various fields ranging from engineering and the physical sciences to the social sciences and history. The work also offers new and original philosophical perspectives on the validation of simulations. Topics and features: introduces the fundamental concepts and principles related to the validation of (...) class='Hi'>computer simulations, and examines philosophical frameworks for thinking about validation; provides an overview of the various strategies and techniques available for validating simulations, as well as the preparatory steps that have to be taken prior to validation; describes commonly used reference points and mathematical frameworks applicable to simulation validation; reviews the legal prescriptions, and the administrative and procedural activities related to simulation validation; presents examples of best practice that demonstrate how methods of validation are applied in various disciplines and with different types of simulation models; covers important practical challenges faced by simulation scientists when applying validation methods and techniques; offers a selection of general philosophical reflections that explore the significance of validation from a broader perspective. -/- This truly interdisciplinary handbook will appeal to a broad audience, from professional scientists spanning all natural and social sciences, to young scholars new to research with computer simulations. Philosophers of science, and methodologists seeking to increase their understanding of simulation validation, will also find much to benefit from in the text. (shrink)
While Thomas Kuhn's theory of scientific revolutions does not specifically deal with validation, the validation of simulations can be related in various ways to Kuhn's theory: 1) Computer simulations are sometimes depicted as located between experiments and theoretical reasoning, thus potentially blurring the line between theory and empirical research. Does this require a new kind of research logic that is different from the classical paradigm which clearly distinguishes between theory and empirical observation? I argue that this is not the (...) case. 2) Another typical feature of computer simulations is their being ``motley'' (Winsberg 2003) with respect to the various premises that enter into simulations. A possible consequence is that in case of failure it can become difficult to tell which of the premises is to blame. Could this issue be understood as fostering Kuhn's mild relativism with respect to theory choice? I argue that there is no need to worry about relativism with respect to computer simulations, in particular. 3) The field of social simulations, in particular, still lacks a common understanding concerning the requirements of empirical validation of simulations. Does this mean that social simulations are still in a pre-scientific state in the sense of Kuhn? My conclusion is that despite ongoing efforts to promote quality standards in this field, lack of proper validation is still a problem of many published simulation studies and that, at least large parts of social simulations must be considered as pre-scientific. (shrink)
Can computersimulation results be evidence for hypotheses about real-world systems and phenomena? If so, what sort of evidence? Can we gain genuinely new knowledge of the world via simulation? I argue that evidence from computersimulation is aptly characterized as higher-order evidence: it is evidence that other evidence regarding a hypothesis about the world has been collected. Insofar as particular epistemic agents do not have this other evidence, it is possible that they will gain (...) genuinely new knowledge of the world via simulation. I illustrate with examples inspired by uses of simulation in meteorology and astrophysics. (shrink)
Critical in the computationalist account of the mind is the phenomenon called computational or computersimulation of human thinking, which is used to establish the theses that human thinking is a computational process and that computing machines are thinking systems. Accordingly, if human thinking can be simulated computationally then human thinking is a computational process; and if human thinking is a computational process then its computational simulation is itself a thinking process. This paper shows that the said (...) phenomenon—the computational simulation of human thinking—is ill-conceived, and that, as a consequence, the theses that it intends to establish are problematic. It is argued that what is simulated computationally is not human thinking as such but merely its behavioral manifestations; and that a computational simulation of these behavioral manifestations does not necessarily establish that human thinking is computational, as it is logically possible for a non-computational system to exhibit behaviors that lend themselves to a computational simulation. (shrink)
It's uncontroversial that notions of idealization and approximation are central to understanding computer simulations and their rationale. What's not so clear is what exactly these notions come to. Two distinct forms of approximation will be distinguished and their features contrasted with those of idealizations. These distinctions will be refined and closely tied to computer simulations by means of Scott-Strachey denotational programming semantics. The use of this sort of semantics also provides a convenient format for argumentation in favor of (...) several theses I shall propose concerning the role computer implemented approximations and idealizations play in fixing what the acceptance of an underlying scientific theory is or should be. (shrink)
In this volume, scientists, historians, and philosophers join to examine computer simulations in scientific practice. One central aim of the volume is to provide a multiperspective view on the topic. Therefore, the text includes philosophical studies on computer simulations, as well as case studies from simulation practice, and historical studies of the evolution of simulations as a research method.
In this paper we shed new light on the Argument from Disagreement by putting it to test in a computersimulation. According to this argument widespread and persistent disagreement on ethical issues indicates that our moral opinions are not influenced by any moral facts, either because no such facts exist or because they are epistemically inaccessible or inefficacious for some other reason. Our simulation shows that if our moral opinions were influenced at least a little bit by (...) moral facts, we would quickly have reached consensus, even if our moral opinions were affected by factors such as false authorities, external political shifts, and random processes. Therefore, since no such consensus has been reached, the simulation gives us increased reason to take seriously the Argument from Disagreement. Our conclusion is however not conclusive; the simulation also indicates what assumptions one has to make in order to reject the Argument from Disagreement. The simulation algorithm we use builds on the work of Hegselmann and Krause (J Artif Soc Social Simul 5(3); 2002, J Artif Soc Social Simul 9(3), 2006). (shrink)
In this paper we investigate with a case study from chemistry under what conditions a simulation can serve as a surrogate for an experiment. The case-study concerns a simulation of H2-formation in outer space. We find that in this case the simulation can act as a surrogate for an experiment, because there exists comprehensive theoretical background knowledge in form of quantum mechanics about the range of phenomena to which the investigated process belongs and because any particular modelling (...) assumptions as can be justified. If these requirements are met then direct empirical validation may even be dispensable. We conjecture that this is not the case in the absence of comprehensive theoretical background knowledge. (shrink)
Over recent decades, computer simulations have become a common tool among practitioners of the social sciences. They have been utilized to study such diverse phenomena as the integration and segregation of different racial groups, the emergence and evolution of friendship networks, the spread of gossip, fluctuations of housing prices in an area, the transmission of social norms, and many more. Philosophers of science and others interested in the methodological status of these studies have identified a number of distinctive virtues (...) of the use of computer simulations. For instance, it has been generally appreciated that as simulations require the formulation of an explicit algorithm, they foster precision and clarity about whatever conceptual issues are involved in the study. The value of computer simulations as a heuristic tool for developing hypotheses, models, and theories has also been recognized, as has been the fact that they can serve as a substitute for real experiments. This is especially useful in the social domain, given that human beings cannot be freely manipulated at the discretion of the experimenter . However, the main virtue of computer simulations is generally believed to be that they are able to deal with the complexities that arise when many elements interact in a highly dynamic system and which often evade an exact formal analysis. (shrink)
Scientists of many disciplines use theoretical models to explain and predict the dynamics of the world. They often have to rely on digital computer simulations to draw predictions fromthe model. But to deliver phenomenologically adequate results, simulations deviate from the assumptions of the theoretical model. Therefore the role of simulations in scientific explanation demands itself an explanation. This paper analyzes the relation between real-world system, theoretical model, and simulation. It is argued that simulations do not explain processes in (...) the real world directly. The way in which simulations help explaining real-world processes is conceived as indirect, mediated by the theoretical model. Simulacra are characterized further, and turn out to be a priori measurable. This gives a clue to a better understanding of the epistemic role of computer simulations in scientific research. (shrink)
Scientific practices have been changed by the increasing use of computer simulations. A central question for philosophers is how to characterize computer simulations. In this paper, we address this question by analyzing simulations in biochemistry. We propose that simulations have been used in biochemistry long before computers arrived. Simulation can be described as a surrogate relationship between models. Moreover, a simulative aspect is implicit in the classical dichotomy between in vivo–in vitro conditions. Based on a discussion about (...) how to characterize a simulative aspect in this dichotomy, we will argue that an adequate understanding of computer simulations in biochemistry requires a previous understanding of simulations in experimental contexts. (shrink)
Where should computer simulations be located on the ‘usual methodological map’ which distinguishes experiment from theory? Specifically, do simulations ultimately qualify as experiments or as thought experiments? Ever since Galison raised that question, a passionate debate has developed, pushing many issues to the forefront of discussions concerning the epistemology and methodology of computersimulation. This review article illuminates the positions in that debate, evaluates the discourse and gives an outlook on questions that have not yet been addressed.
It is often said that computer simulations generate new knowledge about the empirical world in the same way experiments do. My aim is to make sense of such a claim. I first show that the similarities between computer simulations and experiments do not allow them to generate new knowledge but invite the simulationist to interact with simulations in an experimental manner. I contend that, nevertheless, computer simulations and experiments yield new knowledge under the same epistemic circumstances, independently (...) of any features they may share. (shrink)
Computersimulation and thought experiments seem to produce knowledge about the world without intervening in the world. This has called for a comparison between the two methods. However, Chandrasekharan et al. argue that the nature of contemporary science is too complex for using TEs. They suggest CS as the tool for contemporary sciences and conclude that it will replace TEs. In this paper, by discussing a few TEs from the history of science, I show that the replacement thesis (...) about TE is a failure. The paper is divided into three sections. The first section discusses the arguments of Chandrasekharan et al. and demonstrates the three distinct aspects of the replacement thesis. The second section examines the argument against TE and shows that they are inadequate to prove the withering of TE from science. The third section discusses Albert Einstein’s Magnet and Conductor TE and demonstrates that replacing such TE with CS yield no advantage. (shrink)
The credibility of digital computer simulations has always been a problem. Today, through the debate on verification and validation, it has become a key issue. I will review the existing theses on that question. I will show that, due to the role of epistemological beliefs in science, no general agreement can be found on this matter. Hence, the complexity of the construction of sciences must be acknowledged. I illustrate these claims with a recent historical example. Finally I temperate this (...) diversity by insisting on recent trends in environmental sciences and in industrial sciences. (shrink)
Computersimulation and philosophy of science Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9567-8 Authors Wendy S. Parker, Department of Philosophy, Ellis Hall 202, Ohio University, Athens, OH 45701, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
This paper proposes an extensionalist analysis of computer simulations (CSs). It puts the emphasis not on languages nor on models, but on symbols, on their extensions, and on their various ways of referring. It shows that chains of reference of symbols in CSs are multiple and of different kinds. As they are distinct and diverse, these chains enable different kinds of remoteness of reference and different kinds of validation for CSs. Although some methodological papers have already underlined the role (...) of these various relationships of reference in CSs and of cross-validations, this diversity is still overlooked in the epistemological literature on CSs. As a consequence, a particular outcome of this analytical view is an ability to classify existing epistemological theses on CSs according to what their authors choose to select and put at the forefront: either the extensions of symbols, or the symbol-types, or the symbol-tokens, or the internal denotational hierarchies of the CS or the reference of these hierarchies to external denotational hierarchies. Through the adoption of this extensionalist view, it also becomes possible to explain more precisely the reasons why some complete reduction of CSs to classical epistemic paradigms such as “experiment” or “theoretical argument” remains doubtful. On this last point, in particular, this paper is in agreement with what many epistemologists already have acknowledged. (shrink)
I discuss here the definition of computer simulations, and more specifically the views of Humphreys, who considers that an object is simulated when a computer provides a solution to a computational model, which in turn represents the object of interest. I argue that Humphreys's concepts are not able to analyse fully successfully a case of contemporary simulation in physics, which is more complex than the examples considered so far in the philosophical literature. I therefore modify Humphreys's definition (...) of simulation. I allow for several successive layers of computational models, and I discuss the relations that exist between these models, the computer, and the object under study. An aim of my proposal is to clarify the distinction between computational models and numerical methods, and to better understand the representational and the computational functions of models in simulations. (shrink)
A computersimulation runs a model generating a phenomenon under investigation. For the simulation to be explanatory, the model has to be explanatory. The model must be isomorphic to the natural system that realizes the phenomenon. This paper elaborates the method of assessing a simulation's explanatory power. Then it illustrates the method by applying it to two simulations in game theory. The first is Brian Skyrms's (1990) simulation of interactive deliberations. It is intended to explain (...) the emergence of a Nash equilibrium in a noncooperative game. The second is Skyrms's (2004) simulation of the evolution of cooperation. It is intended to explain cooperation in assurance games. The final section suggests ways of enhancing the explanatory power of these simulations. (shrink)
With the mutual exchange and integration of world football, modern football is in an increasingly comprehensive direction. This research mainly discusses complexity computersimulation in the study of the overall play of campus football. Complexity computersimulation is used to design the background of the simulated football field, and the area is divided according to the size ratio of the actual football field. Then, it uses drawing software to draw the football and player controls. The construction (...) of the knowledge base of this paper is mainly combined with the functional modules of rapid formation and response tactics. In the fast formation function, the required formation can be quickly given through football experience and knowledge rules. In the applied tactics function, for the responsibilities of forwards, midfielders, defenders, and other roles, the tactics implemented are given, including partially coordinated offensive and defensive tactics, personal offensive and defensive tactics, and set-ball tactics. The “holistic play” football tactics studied in this paper use XML files as recording and playback data, which not only greatly reduce the amount of file data but also make the operation of XML files intuitive and simple. XML can not only realize the recording and playback of player and football track but also be used in the function of rapid formation. The coach uses the “holistic play” football tactics simulation to demonstrate the movement route through the image, guide the players in each position to perceive the game scene by observing the movement route, and analyze and judge the tactical coordination of their respective positions. The computersimulation tactical analysis of the precision of the passing and running and the path coefficient of the passing factor is 0.606 and 0.59, respectively. This research helps to provide guidance on the overall playing tactics of football. (shrink)