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Adel Bibi

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A paper on control systems?

I'm about to start a research paper on control systems with my Professor. I thought to ask the TED community about their ideas and suggestions regrading the topic.

My professor and I are going to start a research paper on control systems. It could be (linear/nonlinear/continuous/discrete) system.
The system can be on any aspect of life.
Examples: food chains, population growth, epidemic diseases, diabetes, flow of heat, flow of mass, etc.

I would love to hear your ideas on the type of systems you really would love to hear and know more about it's complicity and it's nature to be kept under our control.

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  • Mar 6 2013: I'll start with the joke about the new airplane we developed. It is so advanced it only requires one pilot and a dog to fly it.

    The pilot is there to monitor the systems and the dog is there to monitor the pilot and bite him if he tries to touch anything.

    Ba dum bump!!

    It's not so outlandish an idea though when you come to appreciate how many aviation accidents have been caused by a pilot overriding the automatic control systems when something appeared to be going wrong. Or when you consider how many accidents have been caused because the inputs to the automatic control system failed and caused it to disconnect itself and then drop everything into the pilot's lap without any warning or preparation?

    Air France 447 (Rio to Paris) is a classic example. Several air data sensors failed which then disabled the the control systems. The pilot had to take over and fly manually but instead of going back to the basics of flying, he tried to make sense of the same invalid air data that disconnected the system in the first place. Had the pilot (or any one of the 3 in the cockpit) just left everything alone for a few moments, just lifted his hands up in the air and paused, he/they would have recognized a basic principles he's known since since his first flight and we wouldn't be talking about the flight today..

    Then there are examples where the aircraft is working perfectly and warned the pilot of TERRAIN AHEAD and to PULL UP yet the pilot ignored the warnings and the aircraft flew into the terrain. Why does this happen in a perfectly functional aircraft with a perfectly capable crew.

    What is the disconnect between aircraft control systems and the pilot that has resulted in all these completely avoidable accidents.
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    Mar 5 2013: I'd start by looking at the way different disciplines conceptualize or model control- engineering, economics, biology, neuropsychology- to consider whether there is a hybrid model that could be applied usefully to the understanding of different real systems. But then, I am partial to interdisciplinary modeling.

    I would choose cases by how well they test the boundaries and parameters of your model and illuminate what your particular model can help us understand.
  • Mar 5 2013: Food systems, who is putting the food on your table. how is it getting there , what is it made of , why should you care? Will people be hungry in the future? Is there control, or just markets?
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    Mar 5 2013: My biggie is the control systems used to control the people by supporting educational systems designed by the corporations who want educational systems to exist for the purpose of turning out commodities (workers) who are first and foremost consumers - who are indoctrinated to support the very system that imprisons them.