Some encouragement

[Martin Taylor 2004.01.30.0921]

A few days ago I attended a group meeting of the "Command
Effectiveness and Behaviour" section at the defence lab where I used
to work (and still do on a part-time volunteer basis). At these
monthly meetings, one of the group presents a brief resume of his or
her research.

At this particular meeting, the presentation was on a "new model" of
command and control (control has a quite different technical meaning
in this context). The presenter discussed his model as a logical
consequence of current psychological understanding. However, as the
talk progressed it looked to me more and more as if he was 3/4 of the
way to reinventing PCT. When the talk finished, the section head, who
has considerable weight in advising the Canadian Armed Forces, asked
the direct question: "Have you considered how PCT fits into this?",
which the presenter had not. He was instructed to consult with me,
and I passed to him a couple of relevant presentations and reports
from several years ago.

Yesterday we had a first talk, and I asked him where his inspiration
for the "new model" came from. He said it was from discussing command
problems with active military officers, who were dissatisfied with
the current doctrine based around a feedback loop they call "OODA"
(Observe, Orient, Decide, Act). The OODA loop does not incorporate
purpose or intention, but is a feedback version of a stimulus-based
approach.

I find it encouraging that when a fairly young, up-to-date cognitive
psychologist with no engineering background applies his understanding
to a real-world problem, what he comes up with looks like fairly
advanced steps toward PCT. More encouraging is that his boss (two
levels up) instructed him to learn about PCT, and see where it would
fit in his concept. We'll see where it goes from here.

Martin

[From Bill Powers (2004.01.30.1131 MST)]

Martin Taylor 2004.01.30.0921 --

A few days ago I attended a group meeting of the "Command
Effectiveness and Behaviour" section at the defence lab where I used
to work (and still do on a part-time volunteer basis). At these
monthly meetings, one of the group presents a brief resume of his or
her research.

You were quite right, Martin. I was ready for a little encouragement like
that. Good show.

Best,

Bill P.

ยทยทยท

At this particular meeting, the presentation was on a "new model" of
command and control (control has a quite different technical meaning
in this context). The presenter discussed his model as a logical
consequence of current psychological understanding. However, as the
talk progressed it looked to me more and more as if he was 3/4 of the
way to reinventing PCT. When the talk finished, the section head, who
has considerable weight in advising the Canadian Armed Forces, asked
the direct question: "Have you considered how PCT fits into this?",
which the presenter had not. He was instructed to consult with me,
and I passed to him a couple of relevant presentations and reports
from several years ago.

Yesterday we had a first talk, and I asked him where his inspiration
for the "new model" came from. He said it was from discussing command
problems with active military officers, who were dissatisfied with
the current doctrine based around a feedback loop they call "OODA"
(Observe, Orient, Decide, Act). The OODA loop does not incorporate
purpose or intention, but is a feedback version of a stimulus-based
approach.

I find it encouraging that when a fairly young, up-to-date cognitive
psychologist with no engineering background applies his understanding
to a real-world problem, what he comes up with looks like fairly
advanced steps toward PCT. More encouraging is that his boss (two
levels up) instructed him to learn about PCT, and see where it would
fit in his concept. We'll see where it goes from here.

Martin