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Comments (2)

1 Debabrata.Ghosh commented Permalink

Excellent article - gives a very good insight on what's going to appear in a decade's time

2 MaxJ.Pucher(ISISPapyrus) commented Permalink

No, I don't think it is a fairy tale. I think it is an illusion. Simulation is only possible for closed systems with a well defined set of parameters. When you don't know all the parameters, simulation becomes a dangerous illusion. All of nature, especially biology and sociology are complex adaptive systems that exhibit emergence. We are therefore unable to decompose and to identify all the parameters and relationships. Even in classical physics you can only simulate how an Airbus 780 will behave during the flight maneuvers that it was designed for but not what will exactly happen if not. You might know at what forces it will fall apart but that is all. it might still be quite controllable in many unknown situations and retain structural integrity. But that's where it stops.

The illusion that we can create a pesticide by building simulation of a farm in a computer is scientific arrogance. We can not even simulate how a farm works including for example all the bacteria and viruses and much less can we control it.
I find the same arrogance in Business Process Management where the illusion persists that enforcing a process ensures outcomes, despite the fact that employees and customers aren't standardized and outside conditions change day by day. Our current political/financial crisis was built on the Black-Scholes model of future value (used for derivatives) that is completely ridiculous in reality. it only works in certain market situations and can not deal with substantial or sudden changes in market conditions. How can you model something like human trust?
The future is not simulation and then to enforce some exact procedure. The future is to stay away from arrogance. What we need to give people is not simulation for procedure but a better understanding, transparency and better real-time monitoring systems to only do things where we have also the toolkits to act.
It is better for IBM sell what it has in products and not make predictions that are scientifically unsound. It would be better if IBM would return to the kind of quality customer service that I was responsible for between 1973 and 1988!

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