The boom of computers in the several past decades - has made a significant effect on almost every field of human endeavor. It's introduced new possibilities furthermore structural engineers, whose primary task would be to design buildings, bridges along with other structures. Structural design can be considered to become a mixture of art and science, since it must be great looking, yet follow the laws of fabric behavior at the same time (there also additional factors, for example economical and political, having measurable effect on the ultimate design).

Just before approximately 1960s, the structural design was accomplished primarily manually calculations, graphical and semi-graphical methods. Using the creation of computers, many repetitive design tasks might be automated along with other problems with known theoretical solutions were implemented for practical use. Today you will find countless structural analysis and style programs: commercial, academic, and free; specialized and general; well-established and emerging. As the computer software enables to investigate and design advanced structures unrealistic in the previous era (for example cable-stayed bridge or segmental bridges), it also places higher demands on structural engineers. Ideally, they should become thoroughly acquainted with the actual theory, clearly comprehend the modeling assumptions, and independently verify the pc results. Otherwise they might be compromising the security of the design. Knowledge of internal software working and its assumptions thus remains essential. "Blind use" of computers may result in a loss of revenue of the "feeling for that structure", which is probably the most important aspect of excellent structural design.

User's confidence within the software can be enhanced by the accessibility to verification examples accustomed to look into the software, by trustworthiness of the program author, by good-quality documentation, or by simply understanding that the software enjoys widespread use. However, because the quality assurance and quality control during software development - change from vendor to vendor (and software vendors specifically disclaim any responsibility for damages resulting from using their software), the best responsibility lies using the Civil Engineer Software - user. Therefore, it is strongly advised to check the software results "the old way", against simplified hand calculations and engineering judgement or intuition. An excessive amount of faith within the software could have a fatal impact.

Structural software programs are an excellent servant when used wisely. It ought to be however remembered that structural design is sort of a mosaic made up of many pieces and computerized calculations represent only one of these. To attain a great design, all pieces must be of top quality and must fit nicely together.