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By Stafford Beer

Provides the elemental methods underlying Stafford Beer's pondering because the e-book of his first ebook in 1959. bargains with a philosophy of technology suitable to administration and especially with the character of versions. Demonstrates all significant issues via examples quoted of administration technological know-how purposes to and executive.

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Extra resources for Decision and Control: The Meaning of Operational Research and Management Cybernetics (Classic Beer Series)

Sample text

There is no need, he says, for any confusing details. Kindly extend the table to show the total output before and after the change, and strike the averages in each case. This manager's clerks are competent toothey just have a slightly different idea of what the manager means by these words. They extend the table as in Table lb. Again the answer is clear. Production has risen on every machine. So the change was certainly advantageous. The manager must decide whether to give the innovator a bonusthat is his prerogative.

It must by now be clear why this early chapter of the book is devoted to so odd a topic as a discussion of the way in which we all think, instead of plunging straight into the nature and origins of operational research. Unless we confront ourselves with what has been going on we shall be completely incapable of assimilating a fresh expositioneven if it were twice as clear, and twice as convincing, as I shall be able to make it. We must warn ourselves first of all about the method of tenacity; useful as it normally is, it will not serve our purposes now.

Just the place for a Snark! I have said it thrice: What I tell you three times is true. Lewis Carroll. in The Hunting of the Snark (1876) 1. The Method of Tenacity The first method of fixing belief isolated by Peirce might be called the method of tenacity. It begins with a viewpoint, capriciously formed. Perhaps this was something learned at mother's knee; it might have been revealed by a sailor in a pub; or it is an idea culled from this morning's newspaper. Typically, it is what 'they' are saying (and they ought to know).

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