Chapter One. Introduction

After a general discussion of systems, modeling, and heterogeneity, we introduce in this chapter some basic concepts of modeling such as state, state space, time, and event. We establish that an initial state, the state equations, and the output equations constitute a complete model of a system and allow a prediction of future output provided we can observe the system’s inputs. However, we admit that any model is subject to limitations due to limited scope and accuracy of input observations; the chosen domains for input, state, and output variables; the chosen time model; and so on. For instance in a discrete time model we cannot take into account effects that require a continuous time model and differential equations ...

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