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  • A case for total concept design courses in education

    Paper ID



    • J.F. Sladky Jr.


    Division of Engineering and Weapons, United States Naval Academy






    The complexity of society is today an accepted fact. Let us examine a simplified analogy. From the study of thermodynamics we know that a property, or a number of properties, define the state of a system at any instant in time. Complexity can be considered a property of our social structure or the state at which our society finds itself in history. The property, complexity, is a close indicator of the steps in the development of man’s society. Distinct increments can be detected (Figure 1). At the earliest times man was concerned with providing for his physiological needs; eating, breathing, etc. Existence was simple, usually life or death. As these factors became more secure man turned towards social interaction with his fellow man; existence was more complex, communication and transportation were needed, values defined and so on. Finally, once man attains social respect, he reaches for self realization. One step cannot be attained unless the preceeding is firmly secured, and each of these steps is characterized by an order of magnitude increase in complexity of man’s society.