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Object-oriented Approach to Crop Modeling: Concepts and Issues

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Pp. 297-305 in Proceedings of the World Congress of Computers in Agriculture and Natural Resources (13-15, March 2002, Iguacu Falls, Brazil)  701P0301.(doi:10.13031/2013.8344)
Authors:   H.W. Beck, P. Papajorgji, R. Braga, Ch. Porter, J.W. Jones
Keywords:   Object-Oriented, Crop model, UML, FORTRAN

This research was initiated to learn what the crop modeling community should do to facilitate an evolution from existing crop models toward more modular ones that can meet increasing demands. Specific objectives are to 1) use UML to design and implement a modular crop model using an object oriented language, and 2) to compare the characteristics of this model and its development with a modular model written in FORTRAN. To better understand issues and challenges of using an OO paradigm relative to a Fortran-based model, we investigate the process with a simple, generic crop model. The complexity of the model is minimal hence allowing the focus to be more on model structure (the real issue) instead of the model itself. Two critical issues were considered throughout this study: 1) the exchangeability of modules and 2) the independence of the structure from a specific programming language.

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