Friday, August 31, 2007

Some seeds

Topics that could be discussed in the blog are many; therefore some attempt at a list might be in order.

List of 2011:
  • - review the seeds to date in the context of how posts flowed around subjects
  • - use periodic recaps (what cycle?), such as this, more regularly
  • ...
New list (2009):
  • - By seed, put in comment and point to subsequent discussion.
  • - Get into 'earned value' issues; perhaps, coin new term.
  • - Follow up, as testing in flight is within sight.
  • - More on people matters and how people matter.
  • - Start to deconstruct the strong belief in software (as in, we only need to worry about data and model)
  • - Sandbox has been used without definition. Let's discuss that concept.
  • -
New list (2008):
  • - Modeling dilemma, ought results be used as data to other models. The late Michael Crichton mentioned this at a CalTech talk in 2003 as an example of things gone awry. Let's look at modern examples: plane design (original topic of this blog), planning, finance, ...
  • - Outsourcing as a panacea. Well, for management, that is. Engineers hate outsourcing, and it's not from a not-invented-here bias either. So, why do managers look for magic which outsourcing can reinforce, until time runs out on a schedule and things go awry. Oh, have we not see that recently? Let's look at this for motivation and potential problems that risk management is not going to handle. Why? They're psychologically based.
  • - Back to the 787, can we start a proposed lessons-learned list?
  • - Money, money, money and what it entails can learn a lot from engineering.
  • - The financial realm, is it not in favor of those running the show (Grasso's big take is only a slim glimmer)? Of course, that they (such as the Bear) can also get burned by their idiocy doesn't make it any less so that the house usually wins.
  • - As well, have these modern techniques not created a giant vacuum which pulls money from the pockets of the hapless into those of the ones running the show? Yes, uncertainty and all those other concepts that are used to cover the reality of the situation not withstanding, what we have leads always to 'ponzi-ness' (thanks, Minsky) almost by necessity. Oh, is it hopeless? Nope. Anchor finance into reality. Let 7oops7 tell you how.
  • - Value by the market, yes that is exclaimed, unless it causes unwinding that might be problematic to the fat cats. Value by model, yes in theory, except the nature of the quasi-empirical has to be handled. Value by myth, oh yes - say those who are running the show - big-pocket bonuses in store - , ..., hey wait!! Isn't that what by model is anyway?
  • - In terms of the financial debacle, why do we not see this: privatization of profit (the smaller number of pockets and the preferred elite), socialization of loss (all the rest of us, excluding the elite who have means to avoid the burden)?
  • - Privatization proponents (and this ideology encompasses a whole slew of positions) talk about risk being rewarded. Hah! Yes, it can be spread by various means. But, when those upon whom the risk gets placed do not agree to the role or are snookered (yes, via glib use of mathematics and other cunningness), then there has to be some mechanism (to be defined - sandbox, in short, yet bullying would still be unacceptable even using a playground metaphor) involved.
List (2007):
  • - In terms of Tribe as Truth is earned-value analysis more complicated than we allow?
  • - In terms of Truth in Time, will the upcoming changes to the schedule be better grounded with regard to first flight and first delivery?
  • - Given the number of axes along which changes happened (material, structure, process, system, ...), ought there have been a 787e,f,g to work the process rather than a push toward an accelerated test period and earlier production stacking?
  • - In the financial world, we see discussion about various markings (to market, model, myth). Do we need an analog to be applied to engineering analytics and its use in determining earned-value?
  • - Is riding herd on outsourced work made difficult by further layering of subcontractors (can an optimal limit to layers be identified)?
  • - Can an abstracted plane be understood in its final assembly by any of the disparate parties?
  • - In the sense that forward expansion through possibilities can usually be more complicated than backward exploration of what-already-is and given that complex systems have emergent properties that may or may not be beneficial, ought not a plane be first manifested in its physical form (fully assembled and flying) and then optimized (don't we see this with weight, for instance, where there are arguments that things will prune down through experience?) iteratively? If so, why isn't planning done to reflect this?
  • - Correspondingly (to the prior point), given that humans interpret and bring the expertise, have we placed too much reliance on systems as integrators (after all, are we to the borg state with tight human/machine coupling?) - restated, what of the new processes, beyond PLM (Enovia/Catia), enhances the human interaction that was the hallmark of the OEM's engineering in the past (disparate activities are not easily controlled many times) where successful teaming a given? What world view (with or without a good foundation) says that a massive and complex system can be fruited in one pass (that ol' seduction)?
  • - Is the simulator sufficient to understand functional issues?
  • - General question: if one keeps hearing things that are not true (Hogwash!, Truth in Time), does that necessarily build inability to detect the truth when it does appear?
  • - Why is it that PR can talk in the present tense as if things have already happened when we know that they did not (anyone for an analysis of these)?

08/24/2016 -- Boeing is 100, this year.

01/17/2013 -- Grounding due to fire. 

Modified: 08/24/2016

Mission and method

Under a framework provided by 'truth engineering' as it may apply to 'oops, loops and oops, (and unfortunately, poops) this blog looks at issues related to modern situations (No exhibition planned of hubris, in any of its senses, within the contents of this blog).

An early example was the theme of the flightblogger by Jon Ostrower. There was a whole lot involved with this type of topic.

However, the focus is not chiefly aerospace, or any strict domain for that matter. We stand at a crux of real (quasi-empirical) issues and the virtual (of many sorts) proxies as the major players whose effects will set the stage for the future (warning - platitudes may abound).

The expectations are that events, about which we can have thoughtful analysis and reasoned opinion, will not be hard to find. That a particular airplane program might be undergoing interesting phases at the moment is only circumstantially related, though, some motivations may arise thusly.

Posts can be done in 3 stages: initial draft, then links to on-line supporting material, finally editing to remove any troublesome-ness. All edits, after the initial date, will be marked by a datestamp.

Posts are intentionally non-linear. Later edits will provide bi-directional links that will tie together posts through time to allow expansions on a theme. A list of links will be used to represent successive discussions (linearity, example leveraging) on a subject.

Since posts develop on-line through drafts toward a final (when are the 'oops and the loops finished?), the ellipsis (...) indicates further work is on-going.

Let's take a moment to consider matters of conduct.

Comments will not be moderated, however they may be cleaned up via summary if necessary.


08/24/2016 -- Boeing is 100, this year.

01/17/2013 -- Grounding due to fire.

08/24/2011 -- On the method, see the Profile.

01/27/2009 -- On Method: still doing writing without automated checkers. See Remarks dated 10/30/08. Modifications are accompanied with a date stamp at the bottom of the post.

10/30/2008 -- To readers, in general, concerning syntax. These posts are done by hand, with quick reviews and edits of the material for grammar, etc. As we all know, things can get by the eye. They can get by several sets of eyes.

So, the request is that on reading, if you see a typo, do a gestalt fixup in that area. Usually, a few words later, things settle down. Now, having said that, the intent is to switch to using a processor, at some point, that can be used for both spell and grammar checks which is expected to reduce those little troublesome quirks.

As an aside, the method of exposition is via touch typing (yes, all fingered, having taken a class in high school, many years ago, over the years, I've honed the technique - so, there is no thought to the keyboard except as it may be caressed so as to manifest letters corresponding to the particular word or phrase mentally held in focus) which has proven to be very effective in allowing cross-wired word smashing, such as the fingers typing out of an area that is different from where the mental focus thinks it's looking.

Oops is the only way to describe this. So, even grammar checkers cannot always find some of the more subtle problems that can arise with digitized English phrasing. So, why bother? The automated checkers cannot read the mind's intent.

Besides, they indicate some lazy habit. Joyce's continuing modifications to manuscript is one example and almost an ideal.

Modified: 08/24/2016