A paradigm for research domains that combine models and mathematics

During the opening lecture of the 16th IFAC World Congress in Prague on July 4, 2005, Rudy Kalman articulated a principle that resonated very well with me. He put forward the following paradigm for research domains that combine models and mathematics:
1) Get the physics right.
2) The rest is mathematics.

From this piece of Jen C Willems (pdf); link via John Baez.

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