Viable System Model Interactions of Actors Theory Software Development Contact us

Cybernetics Associates is a Software House specialising in the Cybernetic Approach to Software Engineering.

Our approach to Management, the Profession of Control, is informed by the Cybernetics of Stafford Beer and the rigorous Interactions of Actors approach of Gordon Pask.

Focus your IT for Better Management

  • Record all transactions in real time
  • Escalate Alerts on error
  • Mine transactions for Real Time Audit and to Develop better practice

Real Time Study Group

• Public Service Alerting Modelling and Real Time Audit. Draft Web Pages for Real Time Study Group

Latest: General Purpose Open Source Management Software project: the Viable System Model produces a risk averse Upper Ontology approach.

Architecture Map

• Real Time Government Public Service Computing Archtecture Map .doc format .gif format

• Recent work for the Public Patient Involvement Forum Organisation highlights preventable error in NHS.

Real Time Enterprise

Gartner on Real Time Real Time Enterprise

"Who is most glaringly in need of real-time re-engineering?"

"Government", says David Flint. "Government agencies tend to be very bad at this sort of thing with any process that runs between departments or between layers of government. The problem is that the main beneficiaries are the users of government-provided services, whereas the cost has to be carried by the government organizations themselves."

Watch this space for news of a prototype Governance Engine designed to bring new standards of probity to Public Life. Cybernetics Associates and the Real Time Study Group are on the case! Professional enquiries welcome.

SyntegrityThe Metaphorum Group

The Metaphorum Group website seeks to apply Stafford

 Beer's Cybernetics to render management and Government accountable, transparent and expert. Their First Conference was at Sunderland University at the end of April 2004. "Establishing Design Rules for Real Time World Government" was given by Nick Green, founder Cybernetics Associates. Metaphorum is presenting CybCon 2004 on "Cybernetics and Public Administration", this year's Cybernetics Society Conference.

First meeting of the ad hoc group on Contemporary Problems in Cybernetics at Salieri's Restaurant



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A Management Problem

Organisations inevitably produce redundancy, as a consequence of (von Foerster) self-organisation. This can decrease short term risk. Cyberneticians call this self-production or autopoiesis.

But without careful monitoring autopoiesis can turn pathological, destroying product improvement, as in NHS, LUL, much of Education, Rail Track and many large private companies.

Routine is de-skilled by experts. But a less expert bullying culture can take over. Experts in Operation and Development, whose perpetual development cycles can become expensive, threaten the less skilled and criticism is ignored as short term cost minimisation is pursued.

Costs then spiral as a culture alienated from the proper identity of the organisation takes over. It protects itself from attack with staff who are inert and inexpert able only to criticise trivial and sub-critical activities, and who can be sacrificed when users see the gross failure that inevitably results. Management is turned into a vacuous ritual. The risk of excellence to the homeostatic status quo is circumvented, but the Enterprise is dying. It no longer adapts to changing demand and expectation. As recent events show from there the Organisation can easily descend into corruption.

Our Instrumentation approach makes pathology explicit through performance measurement and enables appropriate participatory development for all.

Stafford Stafford Beer
Memorial web pages

Cybernetics Society Brochure

Brochure for Cybernetics Society in .doc format

To print as four page A5 print "2-up" pp 4, 1 then turnover and print pp 2,3.

"Unix Haters Handbook"

An extremely funny classic of criticism of all that is worst in Unixism.

Homeostatic Continuity

"Axioms from Interactions of Actors Theory"

Kybernetes Vol 33 No. 9/10 2004 (with permission © Emerald Group Publishing) .doc format or .pdf format While working with clients in the last years of his life Gordon Pask produced an axiomatic scheme from his Interactions of Actors Theory which supports Conversation Theory. These axioms produce a general theory of self-organisation and are discussed as characteristic of field concurrence and the second order cybernetic canon. An application to population density is reported supported by both kinematic and kinetic simulation. Implications for cardiovascular anti-coagulation therapy and planetary evolution are discussed. Your comments please. Thanks to Dr Bernard Scott, Dr Ranulph Glanville, Dr Alex Andrew, Dr Christian Haan and John Rochey-Adams.

Thanks to John for Pask's causality aphorism: proof of causality depends on begins and ends. The converse is also true: causality cannot be demonstrated when interactions are eternal.

See a longer Abstract and axiom properties summary prettily formatted.

Some expressions from Pask's Dynamic Protolanguage, Lp, supporting the Interactions of Actors (IA) axioms.

"Interactions of Actors, Theory and some Applications"

Gordon Pask's 91 page manuscript now available at the Cybernetics Society with a commentry on his work on Interactions

"Justice Love and Wisdom"

Graham Barnes' Second Order Cybernetics Classic on Psychotherapy

Cybernetics is presented as a science of dialogue applied to psychotherapy. It is a series of essays from some remarkable lectures given in Croatia at the time of the breakup of Yugoslavia.

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