June 2009

What you really do with OODA loops

by Limbic on June 30, 2009

These are some selections and notes from a brilliant essay by Dr Chester W Richards about OODA loops and the general application of military know how to business. From “What you really do with OODA loops” :

The key to the military notion of time lies in how practitioners of the art of war view strategy. Great commanders down through the years have used time-based strategy to cloud their opponents’ understanding and destroy their morale so that the battle, if it must be fought at all, is relatively quick and painless. In the language of conflict, we say that they move their opponents where they want them to be. Leaders in business and industry can do the same thing and with similar results. This paper explores this notion, first by looking at what today’s most avant-garde business theorists claim for the concept of time, and then comparing that to what the most successful generals and strategists aim to achieve. Finally, we will the translate the military goals and objectives back into the commercial world and look for examples where it actually worked.

…Building one new business after another, faster than the competition, is the only way to stay ahead.

a real strategist doesn’t like words like “respond” and is dubious about “anticipate.” These are passive sorts of things…

Now it is true that fast reactions have their place – if your opponent catches you by surprise, for example. Competence in this tactic, such things as staying cool, using the other side’s momentum against them, and so on, form an essential part of any competitor’s tool kit. Problems arise when, as in the above paradigm, reaction becomes the goal of strategy. First, under such an arrangement, if we don’t see anything, we don’t do anything. So much for initiative.

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These are my links for April 2nd 2009 through June 29th 2009:


The world’s best tomatoes

by Limbic on June 26, 2009

One of the great pleasures of early summer in Serbia is that we get these incredibly delicious tomatoes. They are absurdly delicious. One of my favourite snacks is a thick slice of tomato on a rice cake. The slightly saltier Algae flavoured rice cakes are best. It is a taste sensation!

These are the most delicious tomatoes I have ever eaten.

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South African House Classic

by Limbic on June 25, 2009

I heard this at the start of DJ Rade Banyan’s recent “Simply House” mix.

I have been going around humming this track and signing it to K (’cause she turns me on, innit!). Delighted and proud to see it is a South African production.


Wireless love

by Limbic on June 23, 2009

Wireless love, originally uploaded by Limbic.

Spotted this in Belgrade at the weekend. Brilliant piece of spontaneous street art.


“What do you do if you’re fighting a counterinsurgency campaign and you run out of troops, western troops that is?

According to David Kilcullen in The Accidental Guerrilla (pp 269-71), the answer is to enlist villagers in “local security forces such as neighborhood watch organizations, concerned citizens groups, local security guard forces, auxiliary police and the like”. Use these local security units to do the vital but labour intensive work of protecting communities from insurgents, with support and backup from western troops.

Kilcullen uses the Iraq “surge” of 2007-08 to support this argument. The success of the surge was due to the large number of Iraqis (”mostly former Sunni insurgents or former members of local community or tribal militias”) who were recruited to local security units. This approach put a large number of people, who had expert local knowledge, to work patrolling their communities. There was no need for large headquarters and forward operating bases, line of communication troops and logistics support “since all these recruits live and work out on the ground”. And recruiting Iraqis to the government’s cause had a major impact on the insurgents’ ability to recruit and field fighters.

This is an idea that could be adapted to countering criminal gangs in rundown parts of western cities…” READ ON

via Global Dashboard » Conflict and security Cooperation and coherence » Applying Kilcullen’s ideas to urban regeneration.


Harrowing paintings by survivors of the nuclear bombs…

See more: Ground Zero 1945: Pictures by Atomic Bomb Survivors, Homes Shielded from Conflagration


What really makes us happy?

by Limbic on June 22, 2009

Just posting a few random quotes form Joshua Wolfshenk’s brilliant article “What makes us happy?“:
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Le dernier cri

by Limbic on June 21, 2009

YouTube – le dernier cri Music by Jannes of QMP.


Not a shock for South Africans

by Limbic on June 18, 2009

Apparently 25% of South African men are self-confessed rapists with 5% have raped a women or girl in the last year.

As disgusting as these figures are, they come as no surprise to South Africans. Rape, in particular gang rape (jackrolling), are now part of the culture in some sectors of South African society. It does not help that there are persistent Urban Legends that raping babies cures aids.

These figures may be a bit exaggerated, at least I hope so, but they are not impossible. Not in South Africa today.

From BBC NEWS | Africa | South African rape survey shock :

One in four men in South Africa may have raped someone – with most of those attacking more than one victim, data from a new survey suggests.

The study, by the country’s Medical Research Council, also found three out of four who admitted rape attacked for the first time while in their teens.

It said practices such as gang rape were common because they were considered a form of male bonding.

The MRC spoke to 1,738 men in KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape provinces.

The study found that 73% of respondents said they had carried out their first assault before the age of 20.

Almost half who said they had carried out a rape admitted they had done so more than once.

One in 20 men surveyed said they had raped a woman or girl in the last year.