Philosophical Simulations and Experiments

A Czech translation of this page is available at   Filosoficke simulace a experimenty  .

A Russian translation of this page is available at   .

A Portuguese translation of this page is available at


The two programs available here were written in the 1980's, in BASIC, to run on IBM-PC's and compatibles. The programs provide simulations of abstract, imaginary "worlds". They have been used in undergraduate philosophy of science courses and in various undergraduate science courses. The students attempt to discover the "laws" governing the behavior of the simulated worlds by using inductive reasoning, forming hypotheses, and doing interactive experiments on the worlds.

Enhanced, compiled versions of these programs were published by Wm. C. Brown Pub., Dubuque, IA 52001. Brown has the copyright to those enhanced versions; however, I believe that they may now be out of print. The programs available here are from the original BASIC source code, which is freeware. See the copying information in the code for INDUCT.BAS and FAST.BAS. These are simple, old fashioned BASIC programs (source and compiled code).  They run under older versions of Microsoft Windows, as well as in plain MS-DOS, but they are not compatible with some newer versions of Windows (such as Vista). They do run in Vista inside of  the free DOSBox DOS Emulator .  I recommend running thiis emulator in full screen mode, since the programs were used this way in MS-DOS.

Before trying to use these programs, one should read PHLSIMREADME.TXT and phlsim.txt. In addition to being on-line here, these two files are enclosed in the program packages. These packages are available for downloading in three versions:

PHLSIM.exe --- a self-extracting ZIP file

PHLSIM.ZIP --- a standard ZIP file

phlsim.tar --- a standard UNIX style TAR file

Each package contains the two previously mentioned text files, the source code, and the compiled programs. More information about these programs is available in: "Simulations and Experiments in Philosophy of Science," Perspectives in Computing, [IBM, Armonk, NY], 7 (1987), pp. 23-33.   Unfortunately, this journal has been out of print for several years, but copies may be found in some libraries.

Latest update by rlc:  Nov 20, 2013.