K9ER (Canine Emergency Room) : a veterinary practice simulator based on the integration of an expert system and a physiological simulation
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The K9ER system was designed to provide veterinary students the opportunity to learn and practice the diagnostic and treatment processes in an emergency room. It can be operated on any personal computer with Windows95 and later. This program was written in PROLOG and C++, and was developed in the LPA WIN-PROLOG programming environment. K9ER was developed based on the integration of an expert system and a physiological simulator, QCP. QCP provides all the physiological data to display the patient responses to the treatments. The expert system consists of three parts: the knowledge base which holds the expert knowledge; the inference engine which handles the knowledge base, knowledge source, and information provided by the user to reach its conclusions; and the user interface which communicates with the user and translates the information from the user to the representations that the interface engine can understand. K9ER simulates the clinical processes, gives the realistic real-time records, evaluates the user activities, and provides the expert’s suggestions. This combination of simulator and expert system is an ideal tool for interactive learning.