Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Marshmallow towers

I wish that I had more time to look at some of the amazing/fascinating talks at TED ( I came across Tom Wujec's short talk about his "Build a marshmallow tower" this week (Thank you to Boing Boing.)
Among the lessons from the research are that successful projects need organising, they need specialist expertise, and that there is great value in iteration, testing and improving. (Note the success of groups with someone with organisational skills, the work of architects, the kindergarten students.)

These lessons apply to O.R. projects as well.
(1) Time spent planning is seldom wasted;
(2) O.R. is not just about techniques; there needs to be experience of project work provided by a broad exposure to O.R. work
(3) the process of O.R. model-building ought to be iterative, with feedback from simple models feeding the refinement of the next development of that model.

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