Current Reality Tree (CRT) Example from “It’s not Luck”

In the book It’s not Luck Goldratt’s hero Alex Rogo is creating a medium-sized Current Reality Tree. I re-created the CRT in Vithanco. 

The CRT from “It’s not Luck”

When creating the tree from the book I realised a few things:

  • Goldratt didn’t fully define the tree in the book. I needed to make some connections up for myself. Please let me know if I went wrong. 
  • Goldratt didn’t connect UDE #11 at all. If you have read the book then you know that it was the task of Alex Rogo to connect all UDEs. 
  • This seems to me to be the obvious example CRT. However, I couldn’t find anyone who had published this example. 

Fun fact: I only recently read It’s not Luck for the first time. This is actually quite funny as I have used the TOC Thinking Processes for quite some time but I was simply not aware that they were presented in this book by Goldratt. Instead I read the Thinking with Flying Logic a manuscript that is delivered together with the really good Flying Logic software (which was a huge influence for Vithanco). Furthermore did I read Lisa Scheinkopf’s Thinking for a Change. I even read Dettmer’s executive version book

However, I am happy that I now read the book as it is a useful introduction. Clearly, the book has a message and is therefore not a true novel and some of the examples are more questionable than others, but that is besides the point. I highly recommend the book. 

Diagram Logic

Vithanco diagrams can have an associated logic. They are guiding you to the right thinking. Vithanco has 3 different Logic Types. 

NameMeaning
NoneNo logic associated
Sufficient CauseSufficient Cause means that from one statement the next statement follows. 
Necessary ConditionNecessary Condition means that each of the predecessor statements need to be fulfilled in order for a statement to be true. 

So, in a sufficient cause diagram, the following makes sense:

Sufficient Cause

Clearly, when I eat I am less hungry than before. Being less hungry is a direct consequence. Eating is sufficient to reduce hunger (ignoring some psychological effects). In comparison, preparing food is not sufficient. You can prepare food and not eat it. That leads to necessary conditions. 

Necessary Conditions

It is not sufficient to be 18 years old, you need as well in order to be registered in order to vote. Unfortunately, this diagram would not tell you if there is a 3 condition to be met in order to be able to vote, like living in a democracy. 

How to use this?

  • First and foremost, it should influence the way you think about the diagram. (Remember, Vithanco stands for “Visual Thinking and Communication”).
  • Choosing the right logic makes the model more comprehensive. You can use And/Or junctors in order to add more expressiveness to the diagram. 
  • Theory of Constraints (TOC) uses these two diagram types extensively. TOC is based on designing logically correct diagrams. 
  • If you drag from a node to a line in a sufficient cause diagram then Vithanco will create a AND junctor for you, do the same in a necessary condition diagram Vithanco will create a OR junctor. Both junctors are part of the Basics Domain. 
  • In the future Vithanco will use the logic type for diagram reviews. More on that at a later time. 

The diagram’s logic is shown in the upper right corner, in a non-obtrusive way. If you want to change it then need to go into the settings dialog and choose “Behaviour” in the settings dialog.

How to change the Diagram’s Logic

Then choose the intended logic.

Change the Logic here

In case you wonder, the Application is referencing this article. 

Dark Mode is coming

“Dark Mode” or “Dark Appearance” is a feature introduced with macOS 10.14 Mojave. I always preferred to write white on black (or similar) on my computer instead of white on black. Apple seems to think I am not alone with this preference and introduced a bright on dark appearance (“Dark Aqua”) for the whole of macOS. 

It was no question for me that Vithanco needed a dark mode. And I believe that the result was worth it. 

A small Current Reality Tree. Left side with normal appearance, right side with dark appearance

It took me a bit longer than expected. Simply because I needed to keep two sets of colours aligned across several node styles. I didn’t know I had so many colours. 🙂

One of the consequences was that I needed to review exporting the diagram to an image. The old export was unaware of appearance. The new export creates light appearance PNG, JPG or PDF. But I added as well “Dark PNG”, and “Dark JPG” export. 

When will it be released? Soon. My task list became very short over the last weeks. I would expect a release of the new Vithanco and an update to all the other versions this month.