Decision Loops: The Cybernetic Dimension of Battle Command.
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MIL ITARY STUDIES
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This monograph examines how the rational and cybernetic decision processes are used in tactical battle command. It explores the decision loop, a cybernetic decision process based on feedback, as a means to connect information directly to action and exploit the time value of information. The rational decision process, the analytical process of choosing an optimum course among alternatives, does not support the rapid use of information. The cybernetic decision model, the use of feedback to regulate action, provides an alternate means of exploiting the time value of information. This model views command as a control problem with the objective of controlling both the enemy and friendly forces on the battlefield. In order to control the battlefield, the variety of the control system must match the system being controlled. The criteria of fast acting, self regulating, and self organizing are applied to analyze the Boyd cycle or observe orient decide act OODA loop, the recognition primed decision RPD model, and the Lawson loop. The OODA and RPD loops do not provide the framework for self regulation or self organization. The Lawson model differs by providing a regulator that compares feedback to a desired state. This suggests two layers of decision an execution layer that translates information to action, and a planning layer to design and adapt the regulator. This two layer system when networked to higher and sister echelons provides the basis of a self organizing system that acts around the authority of information. Specifically collective action builds around predetermined decision rules. Decision loops can then exploit the time value of information.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics