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CHAPTER FOUR

TACKLE THE TYRANT

THE PRINCIPLE OF WORST THINGS FIRST

The balancing of a flyer may seem, at first thought, to be a simple matter, yet almost every experimenter had found in this the one point which he could not satisfactorily master.

Wilbur Wright (1867–1912), inventor

TACKLE THE TYRANT is a problem-solving principle based on the idea that within each problem there is a potential “tyrant,” a subset of the problem that, if not resolved, will prevent solution of the whole. By putting the worst (i.e., the tyrant problem) first, costs for the whole are limited to this subset should a solution be unachievable.

You might remember a children’s ...

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