A useful tool for analyzing and solving problems in every industry and occupation


About this Application

The Oxford English Dictionary define a problem as

  • a matter or situation regarded as unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome
  • a thing that is difficult to achieve
  • denoting or relating to people whose behaviour causes difficulties to themselves and others

A problem is an unwelcome situation or behaviour that needs to be changed to something more desirable.

In technical matters, like maintenance of motor vehicles, computers or any other system, a problem is a deviation from a norm or standard, the way a thing is designed to function. 

In social issues abnormal human behaviour is a problem if it causes harm and interfers with the efficient function of a social unit in the distributed performance and mutual service required within a civilized society. Problematic human behaviour may not be as simple as techniical problems because of different values and standards in what is considered normal, acceptable or appropriate.

All problems can be defined in terms of goals, norms, unsatisfied needs, wants or desired outcomes that are threatened by some sort of obstacle. It is the obstactle, threat or impediment that is usually the problem; something you don't want; a cause of dysfunction, harm, discomfort or dissatisfaction you want to be gone, so that what is considered a normal or acceptable situation can resume.

If you don’t have a threatened goal, norm or desired outcome, you don’t have a problem.

Simple problems require little or no thought. You can walk around an obstacle in your path. You can jump a ditch or climb over a fallen tree. You can eat something when hungry; drink when thirsty, or swat a pesky fly. It is when an issue is more complex that it requires serious thought.

The ability to evaluate and solve complex problems is what distinguishes humanity from other animals. It allows us to develop and maintain a technologically advanced civilization; which in turn allows us to enjoy a relatively prosperous and comfortable life.

The ability to solve problems is the most important skill any person can learn for their survival and prosperity; and for the future of humanity. Without wide spread problem solving skills, civilization and quality of life will quickly degenerate.

Problem solving is one of the most important skills to teach to children; as important as maths or literary skills. The need for problem solving skills is ubiquitous throughout all levels of society and at all times of life. There are many types of problems in every field of human endeavor. This application can help resolve them.

To give people the best chance to survive and prosper in a modern technological civilization, it is useful to be familiar with the range of human needs, wants and potential; their ever changing priorities; the industries and occupations based on them; the impediments associated with each; and the means to resolve those impediments.

Many problems require dealing with people whose goals conflict with our own. It is important to learn to identify, understand and recognise the legitimacy of the needs, wants and aspirations of others; and to know what is reasonable and what is not. It is important to learn how to negotiate and compromise to ensure that all parties in dispute will get most, if not all, of what they want.

This application employs a reliable goal based method of solving problems, using a relational database to analyze problems and develop solutions. It helps define problems in terms of realistic desired outcomes, describe impediments and threats to those goals, examine probable causes of the impediments, develop strategies to surmount those impediments and achieve the desired outcomes.

The application can be used to define, evaluate and achieve one’s own goals and those of clients or communities; or to define, evaluate and thwart the goals, strategies and tactics of competitors. The application can be used to start your own business solving problems in your area of specialty.

The application employs six basic steps. Each step has a number of sub-steps.

  1. Define the problem in terms of realistic, achievable, prioritized goals or desired outcomes.
  2. Include any information relevant to the problem.
  3. List and evaluate significant impediments to the desired outcomes.
  4. List and evaluate probable causes of the impediments for relevance to the outcomes.
  5. Develop, evaluate and choose between possible solutions to impediments or causes.
  6. Define and prioritize the actions and resources required to implement chosen solutions.

You are strongly encouraged to seek professional advice where problems involve specialized knowledge.


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