Men, Models, Methods, and Machines in Hydrologic Analysis

by Willard M. Snyder,
John B. Stall,

Serial Information: Journal of the Hydraulics Division, 1965, Vol. 91, Issue 2, Pg. 85-99

Document Type: Journal Paper


In searching for understanding of an hydrologic mechanism, or in analyzing a particular hydrologic situation to obtain a quantitative practical answer, the human element is represented by the hydrologist making the pursuit. The degree of ultimate success of the operation is unalterably linked with the knowledge, effort, and creativity which the man puts into the operation. A background of professional training and experience allows the man to create a mathematical model to accommodate the problem at hand. It is man's responsibility to specify this model in such a way that known physical laws are not violated. Prior experience and evidence should be incorporated into the model. A vast array of mathematical methods are available to evaluate the models so constructed and reduce their output to a meaningful result. The catalog of useful methods is so comprehensive as to allow a meaningful solution, even for a complicated model. High-speed digital computers and analog computers are available to execute the numerical manipulations required in conducting hydrologic analysis by models and methods.

Subject Headings: Hydrologic models | Mathematical models | Computer models | Equipment and machinery | Computer analysis | Hydrology | Quantitative analysis | Human factors

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