This Creative Matter page and its links document the history of development of and the nuts and bolts of the creation, growth and use of the Web-HUMAN systems physiology simulation at Skidmore College from its inception (1990) until it was passed to the University of Seville Medical College (2015). The model was the result of 25 plus years of close collaboration between Roy Meyers (RSM, Skidmore Biology-physiology) and Leo Geoffrion (LDG, who began as Skidmore Director of Academic Computing and continued his contributions while later in industrial positions and during retirement).
The original HUMAN FORTRAN model itself (Tom Coleman- University of Mississippi Medical College) had been in use in physiology education at Skidmore in mainframe and then "microcomputer" format since perhaps 1983. The initial thrust (≈ 1999) to put the model up on the web was twofold. One was to enlarge student access via web presentation vs. use being confined to a single dedicated computer or terminal. The second was remove the necessity of command line student input by allowing the user to choose his/her desired settings via a single mouse-able web page with drop down menus. This was done by creating a custom web wrapper to serve as the user interface. User choices were then passed as command strings to the now user-invisible command line FORTRAN.
This immediately allowed expanded use of the model in a range of course labs and lectures including Comparative Vertebrate Physiology, Advanced Comparative Physiology, Mammalian Physiology and Medical Physiology. In addition, the presence on the web led to access and progressively increasing use by the larger world-wide physiological educational community.
Use in Skidmore courses in turn led step by step to expansions in the capabilities of the model. Some of these major improvements included the addition of graphing of output (first 4 variable, then flexible-output 6 variable format), the ability of students and instructors to store and retrieve experiments in a hierarchical file system, the addition of user selectable on-line help for both variables and entire system test procedures (e.g. a blood gas sample) and finally a more fully defined diagnosable clinical Patient page that integrated Patient presentation and manipulation to diagnose and cure with staged pedagogical Hints.
This progressive growth of capability led to increased Skidmore course use (the final Medical Physiology course had 2/3 of its labs and both of its exams run by the students within Web-HUMAN) and an increase in outside Skidmore use that finally topped out at near 100,000 outside simulation sessions.
Web of Human Code, Leo D. Geoffrion
About Web Human, Roy Meyers
Final Analysis of Use, Roy Meyers
Human Versions, Roy Meyers
Intro Tutorial, Roy Meyers
Version 9 New Features, Roy Meyers
What is Web Human, Roy Meyers