Month: February 2018

XXVI. 04/02/18-18/02/18; cut and carve

I get up early. An email woke me. I had forgotten to switch my phone to airplane mode. Airplane security has wrought itself into some of the daily operating systems of our earth-bound lives. Why should it be called “airplane” mode? Why not “offline” or “free” mode? To paraphrase Herb Simon, problems are more complex than our brains can handle, so we oversimplify and ignore parts of the problem statement, or fill in the unknown with our mental models of the way we think it should be, sometimes with dramatic effects on the results. Creating a useful problem statement is therefore a balancing act, a matter of providing enough solution-neutral information to capture important needs, without providing extraneous or misleading information. System Architecture, Global Edition Because the safety switch must be recognizable to strong-willed stewards in the economy classes of intercontinental flight services. An oversight like keeping your phone wired to the beating throb of cyberspace might change your life. You get up and have three or four hours more time to think or write …

XXV. 17/01/18-03/02/18; drawing lines

The train is full. I settle into a seat in the first-class compartment. Here there is ample space while it is cramped outside. I recognize others who are not supposed to be here either. The man next to me is marking tests labeled “Human Synergistics: Life Styles Inventory, Description by others, LSI2.” How does he describe himself? Is someone who evaluates states of mind with standardized tests a coach, a psychologist or a consultant? He is a kind of priest taking confession through a score sheet. “If one wanted to express the value of the priestly existence in the briefest formula it would be: the priest alters the direction of ressentiment.” He wears a blue suit, sits with shoulders hunched. The crown of his head is bald. He is on a new set of test-papers, LSI1 this time: “Strengthening organizations through individual effectiveness.” (According to the website, LSI1 is a self-assessment of thinking styles, personal effectiveness and satisfaction while LSI2 is feedback provided by peers, managers, and/or sub-ordinates.) He goes through the 20 squares on the …