Systema: Mix Thirty-Six

I came up with this representation of de Bono’s “Six Thinking Hats” and Zachman’s “Framework Focuses” early in this blog’s lifetime. I am hoping I have achieved the final form as we see it here. The major change is the switch between the last two rows and the switch between the last two columns. I consider this structure a fixed hierarchy both vertically and horizontally.

As part of my reflection upon this I created a table to think about the various hexads I’ve encountered:

One thing I realize from this exercise is that events are the definitions of the system. If you do not define an event you will never observe it. In other words, you cannot see what you are not looking for. Nodes are the instances of the system and provide the affordances the outside world can manipulate.

You can also see here that I have categorized cause, energy and time as “logical” and observer, mass and space as “physical”. I am just playing here, but what are the potential implications? Could cause, energy and time be simply logical constructs? Could observer, mass and space be the only truly physical constructs?

Related Post:

Systema: Seven Hats, Seven Links

Systema: The Six Hats, Six Coats Hypercube

Later in this post we will discuss this man:


The following table represents my interepretation of the Zachman Framework:


I have taken this framework and applied the following de Bono metaphor:


I also incorporated my own metaphor to differentiate the axes:


These two modifications produced the following table:


This is where I had an “aha” moment. I asked myself what the entities would be:


I also recognized that in each column these entities were related hierarchically allowing the creation of a six dimensional hypercube. In creating the hypercube it was possible to look at a variety of “slices”. For example:


The table above combines Motive with Person. We can see that Motive is verbal while Person is a noun.

Next we will combine Function and Data to create another slice:


Again, Function is a verb and Data is a noun.

Let’s look at one final slice:


Here we see that nodes and time have many possible states.

But, why am I doing this exhaustive analysis of the possible combinations in the Six Hats, Six Coats hypercube?

Let’s go back in time for a moment and look at this table:


When Dmitri Mendeleev created this table to describe periodic behaviour of the elements, many of the elements had not been discovered. However, the table projected what the properties of those elements would be making the search much easier.

The Six Hats, Six Coats hypercube is also a form of periodic table. Its entire collection of possible cells are called the framework space. Many of the cells in the hypercube do not yet exist, however their properties can be predicted. This makes their search and discovery of system components systematic instead of random or organic.

Related Posts:

Systema: Seven Hats, Seven Links

STL: Structured Thinking Language R0.1

The more original a discovery, the more obvious it seems afterwards.
Arthur Koestler

Since I posted STL: Structured Thinking Language and STL: Structured Thinking Language (remix), I have made quite a bit of progress in my thinking regarding the syntax of Structured Thinking Language.

The Six Hats are no longer verbs. There are only two verbs in STL, INDUCE and DEDUCE. INDUCE is a bottom up process of learning the structure of a system. DEDUCE is a top down process of teaching the structure of a system. INDUCE observes and orients. DEDUCE decides and acts. All STL statements begin with the INDUCE or DEDUCE verb to determine whether you are referring to an existing or a new system.

Each of the verbs can also be IMPLICIT or EXPLICIT according to the definitions found in Implicity and Explicity.

The Six Hats are now six adjectives:

  1. CONCEPTUAL refers to the creation of entities. Revise. Creativity. Meaning.
  2. CONTEXTUAL refers to the creation of relationships. Relate. Relativity. Uniqueness.
  3. LOGICAL refers to the creation of attributes. Report. Optimicity. Benefit.
  4. PHYSICAL refers to the creation of constraints. Record. Pessimicity. Cost.
  5. MECHANICAL refers to the creation of affordances. Intuit. Anthropicity. Usability.
  6. OPERATIONAL refers to the creation of manipulations. Engage. Synchronicity. Convenience.

The Six Coats remain the unchanged nouns:

  1. MOTIVE refers to the rules of the system.
  2. LOCALE refers to to the nodes of the system.
  3. OBJECT refers to the data of the system.
  4. METHOD refers to the functions of the system.
  5. PERSON refers to the people of the system.
  6. MOMENT refers to the events of the system.

Giving us the following:


Now that we have the verbs, adjectives and nouns of STL we can work on the syntax:

CONCEPTUAL NOUN.nounname;    

                (   MOTIVE.motivename,

LOGICAL     NOUN.nounname.attributename;    

PHYSICAL    NOUN.nounname.attributename.constraintname;    

MECHANICAL      NOUN.nounname
		(	select,

OPERATIONAL    NOUN.nounname.attributename.value;

NOUN can be any one of the Six Coats nouns. Noun name can be any name unique for that specific noun. Cardinality of context is always one to many be the relationship associative, relative or recursive. A noun has multiple attributes each with a constraint, affordances and ultimately a value.  Note I do not call mechanical access “privileges”.  I prefer “affordances”.

Structured Thinking Language R0.1

Trouble? Change Hats

I’ve just finished reading “Why Wait for Trouble?” by Kenneth W. Freeman in Strategy and Business. Kenneth described a five stage condition model of a company.

  1. Bleeding
  2. Stability
  3. Gradual Improvement
  4. Rapid Improvement
  5. Arrogance

The danger Kenneth described was remaining in any of these stages too long. I agree, but you probably guessed that I disagree that there are five stages. I believe there are six stages and there are symptoms of remaining in them too long. Again I am referring to my Six Hats, Six Coats metaphor.

  1. Blue Hat: Synchronization Failure. You are not performing transactions at the optimal rate. Bleeding.
  2. Red Hat: Personalization Failure. You are not addressing employee/customer needs. Over Stability.
  3. Black Hat: Physicalization Failure. You are not minimizing cost. Overly Gradual Improvement.
  4. White Hat: Logicalization Failure. You are not maximizing value. Overly Rapid Improvement.
  5. Yellow Hat: Contextual Failure. You are not maintaining uniqueness. Arrogance.
  6. Green Hat: Conceptual Failure. You are not revising your vision. Dictating.

These are the symptoms of wearing any of the Six Hats too long. You can also wear any of the Six Coats too long, but that remains for another post.

Objects, Objects, Objects

I’ve had a bit of an epiphany today as I was thinking about the Structured Thinking Language. It has to do with the process of creating databases, but is transferable to each of the focuses of the model.

The steps to designing a database are:

1. Conceptual Design
2. Contextual Design
3. Logical Design
4. Physical Design
5. Personal Design
6. Synchronal Design

First is the conceptual design of a object. This is the object motive or primary key attribution.

Second is the contextual design. This is the object location or foreign key attribution.

Third is the logical design. This is the object formation or non-key attribution.

Fourth is the physical design. This is the object function or domain attribution.

Fifth is the personal design. This is the object personation or ownership attribution.

Sixth is the synchronal design. This is the object momentation or datetime attribution.

A table is a collection objects with the same motive. A row is a collection of objects with the same location. A column is a collection of objects with the same formation. A domain is a collection of objects with the same function. A privilege is a collection of objects with the same personation. A schedule is a collection of objects with the same momentation.

A table is an object. A row is an object. A column is an object. A domain is an object. A privilege is an object. A schedule is an object. And they are all attributes of a datum object.

The same goes for each of the focuses.

It looks like I will be reviewing the naming of my STL verbs and nouns again.

White Hatting a Website


White Hatting in the Six Hats, Six Coats metaphor is about the logical perspective of a system.  Edward de Bono calls this the optimist’s hat.

White Hats take the contextual design provided by the Yellow Hats and exprore it to its full extent. In the White Hat perspective designers optimize goals, networks, data, processes, people and times to theoretical limits. White Hat logical design is used by the Black Hat physical design team.

Like the other hats, the White Hat is worn with each of the Six Coats. The basic question is what are the logical limits within the context.

White Hat, Green Coat: How do we achieve maximum value for the customer?

White Hat, Yellow Coat: What are we navigating?

White Hat, White Coat: What is our data?

White Hat, Black Coat: What are our processes?

White Hat, Red Coat: What are our personas?

White Hat, Blue Coat: What is our peak performance?

White Hat also has a reverse purpose when variances occur in the transacting system. White Hats decide how to handle a variance which is to alter the system to accomodate the exception or to escalate it up to the Yellow Hats.

Blue Data, Red Data and Black Data

In my Six Hats, Six Coats and Six Ring metaphors I have been discussing this diagram:


It can also be presented as follows:


It has been a challenge to the traditional Data, Information, Knowledge and Wisdom hierarchy by introducing not one, but three forms of data.  I call them Blue Data, Red Data and Black Data.

Blue Data or Reflex Data is data that affects the system, but is not necessarily captured at all. It influences a transaction, but requires techniques external to regular data capture to record. Some of the most subtle aspects of design influence this level of a transaction.  This is when a customer leaves a website because the Flash presentation takes too long to load.

Red Data or Intuitive Data is registered by the system, but does not generate any exceptions or variances. Although the data affects the bottom line it does not register in the cognitive-physical or cognitive levels of the system.  This is “business as usual” data.

Black Data or Exception Data is registered by higher levels of the system.  This is data that calls for physical-cognitive response outside the domain of normal operation.  An example would be a customer having to make two orders of nine units and one order of seven units because the system cannot capture more than nine units in one transaction.

I believe that for the Data, Information, Knowledge and Wisdom model to be complete it has to recognize the significance of Blue Data, Red Data and Black Data. For business to truly be successful, it not only has to ascend the DIKW hierarchy, it has to descend the hierarchy below the traditional definition of data and recognize all of data’s facets.

And what is Information, Knowledge and Wisdom, but higher forms of data?