Looking for MAC pop. biol. software

Ben Jones jonesbb at BELOIT.EDU
Thu Aug 5 03:13:20 EST 1993

>I'm looking for a population biology simulation program, similar
>to the DOS program POPULUS, which can be run on a very primitive
>(floppy drive only) MacIntosh.  Any ideas?
>Thanks in advance,
>Alex Parker
>UMaine Zoology
>aparker at maine.maine.edu

I am one of several authors of a Mac application called Biota.  It will run
on a two-floppy Mac.  

Biota is part of the BioQUEST Library, which is being marketed by the
University of Maryland Academic Software Development Group (ASDG). 
BioQUEST itself is a non-profit consortium of biologists and programmers at
several institutions in the US.

Disclaimer:  In case I am not biased enough just having helped develop
Biota, I also work for BioQUEST.  :-)

I am not very familiar with Populus, but I will describe the basics of
Biota here:

Biota allows you to create simulations with up to ten species interacting
with each other.  Each species can use a different model of growth, and
several Models are included from the Population Biology literature.  The
species are placed in a map which can be divided into up to 144 regions (12
X 12), each of which has a deme of each species.  The regions are linked by
migration, which can follow one of the built-in migration models or can be
completely customized.

Simulations to be used for teaching can be saved in a "black box" mode to
be used as problems ot be investigated by students.  Problem simulations
can only be investigated using simulated "field tools".  One use of these
problem simulations is to create several different models of the same
system and try to distinguish them using the field tools.

Any technical or scientific comments on Biota should be sent to me.  (I am
currently working on the next version.)

To get sales info, contact ASDG at asdg at umdd.umd.edu.  There are both
individual licenses (under $100 for the whole library) and site licenses
for classroom use.

Ben Jones

Ben Jones                  BioQUEST / Department of Biology
jonesbb at beloit.edu         Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin

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