Computer modeling and simulation are increasingly powerful tools that researchers employ to better understand lithospheric deformation and unravel the complex feedbacks that drive the evolution of Earth's surface. Computational approaches employed to address the key scientific interests of the community tend to be based either in continuum, analytical, or discontinuous methods. Usage of these different mathematical methods, several of which may be deployed in any one code, depends on the maturity of the research area and the specifics of the research question. Individual researchers will often develop numerical techniques and modeling software capable of solving specific geologic problems. Community-developed scientific codes can build on established numerical methods while taking advantage of state-of-the-art techniques. As a community of user-developers is established, a shared expertise emerges that in turn leads to improved computational tools.
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