Win or die:
The stakes are high
in air-to-air combat.
Survival in combat –
and success in business –
depends on making the right decisions,
faster than your competitors.
Originally created by a fighter pilot, USAF Colonel John Boyd, the OODA loop (Observe-Orient, Decide-Act) captures fundamental ideas about problem solving in continuously changing circumstances. Survival in combat – and success in business – depends on making the right decisions, faster than your competitors.
The OODA loop formalizes a way of thinking about situation assessment (Observe-Orient) and context sensitive action (Decide-Act). It forms the basis for Artificial Intelligence Systems that can replicate the way people think.
Veloxiti’s approach to artificial intelligence has been heavily influenced by Boyd’s problem solving approach, so much so that our development toolkit explicitly models the OODA loop.
OODA Loop Overview
Veloxiti’s Warfighter’s Associate (WA) is an implementation of the Observe-Orient-Decide-Act (OODA) loop, a process soldiers and organizations perform continuously as they develop situation awareness and situational understanding, decide on action, and re-assess the situation to determine the next steps. The WA’s knowledge base captures how military experts use the OODA loop in combat situations.
The WA uses this knowledge to provide context-sensitive tips and cues, enabling inexperienced and / or stressed warfighters to function closer to the level of their more experienced counterparts. Its development is consistent with Artificial Intelligence software being developed in commercial settings.
OODA Loop Cycle
The OODA cycle (Figure 1) is broken down to four interrelated and overlapping processes through which one cycles continuously: Observe, Orient, Decide, and Act.
Of course, while these cycles are taking place, the situation may be changing. It is sometimes necessary to cancel a planned action in order to meet the changes. This decision cycle is thus known as the OODA loop.
Figure 1: The OODA Loop Enables Continuous Adaptation
to Continuously Changing Situations
OODA Loop Cycle Defined
Velox, the framework Veloxiti has developed with CERDEC funding for implementing intelligent systems, is the platform used for implementing the Warfighter’s Associate – is uniquely suited for building intelligent systems for military use. Velox is a framework for building applications that leverage the OODA-loop.
is the collection of data by means of the senses
the analysis and synthesis of data to form one’s current mental perspective
the determination of a course of action based on one’s current mental perspective
the physical playing-out of decisions
OODA Loop Process
OODA loop problem solving techniques enable development of intelligent systems that can respond continuously to continuously changing situations. As shown in Figure 1, Veloxiti uses knowledge graphs for representing military knowledge. The Observe-Orient (OOG) graph represents knowledge about situation assessment – i.e., what is happening in the world. The Decide-Act (DAG) graph represents goals and plans suitable for responding to significant events in the world. The Observe-Orient and Decide-Act graphs are linked using monitors which fire when significant events occur.
Given the capabilities of these baseline technologies, Veloxiti is well positioned for integrating cognitive computing in numerous DoD programs. We will support the design and implementation of future systems of systems that operate on any command and control platform. These systems will consider Commander’s Intent, constantly changing battle space and individual soldier state to optimize the ability to perform mission command in any situation regardless of environment.