Added by**archaeologs**IN Others Save

We keep Archaeologs ad-free for you. Support us on Patreon or Buy Me a Coffee to keep us motivated!

added by**archaeologs**

A devices used by archaeologists to aid the interpretation of data; models consist of hypothetical reconstructions of dynamic processes partly based on material remains and partly testing the validity of interpretations of material culture. They are idealized representations of the real world, used to demonstrate a simplified version of some of its characteristics. Models vary in complexity and can be physical representations or literary descriptions. It might be a physical model of a site or landscape to explain some feature of its function or organization; such models at full scale are well known in experimental archaeology. A simple model might be a map showing, for example, the distribution of sites in a region or a scatter diagram showing the relationship between two measured variables. Models need not be based on specific archaeological data, but can be derived from a number of sources: invented data can be generated by computer simulation; geometrical and mathematical models can also be used, such as central place theory or the rank-size rule in the study of regional settlement, or catastrophe theory in the study of cultural collapse. General systems theory can also be a source of systems models designed to show a simplified version of the working of a complex social or economic organization. The term model can also be used in a less specific sense for any general mode of thought in which archaeological research is conducted, for example descriptive, historical, or ecological. Models may also be diachronic or synchronic. The concept of formulating a model, testing it and refining it, is frequently applied in a non-mathematical way and this is the way in which it is most often used in archaeology. In this sense it is either synonymous with 'hypothesis' or refers to a number of interlocking hypotheses.

added by**archaeologs**

Statistics ‘rules’ by which a process or phenomenon may be guided. This set of rules is a ‘model’ of the way in which the process is thought to work. Models of this kind are tested by applying the rules to a set of information and comparing the outcome with the results known to be obtained by the real process. The rules of the model can then be altered until an appropriate set of results is produced. A model which has been tested in this way may be used to predict the outcome of a particular set of conditions. Prime examples of this are the General Circulation Models used to predict future weather conditions. Models can also be a useful tool for finding out how a phenomenon works. The concept of formulating a model, testing it and refining it, is frequently applied in a non-mathematical way and this is the way in which it is most often used in archaeology. In this sense it is either synonomous with ‘hypothesis’ or refers to a number of interlocking hypotheses. A major problem is that all archaeological processes are strictly untestable, because they have already happened; rigorous application of models to archaeology is therefore difficult.

© 2024 - Archaeologs