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Custom Solutions oculus www.oculusinfo.com Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others Click to edit Master title style Click to edit Master subtitle style Custom Solutions oculus www.oculusinfo.com oculus GeoTime Visualization for Peace Support Operations William Wright Thomas Kapler Oculus Info Inc. September 15, 2004
2 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 2 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Research Study Sponsored by DRDC Toronto Dr. Justin Hollands, Leader HCI Group Innovative Visualization Concepts for Situation Awareness and C2 in OOTW
3 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 3 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Research Study Objectives Future commanders will be able to use more information from more sources. Visualization display techniques allow users to see, use and interact with large amounts of multi-dimensional data in a natural and easy manner, particularly in complex, time sensitive situations. Operational and planning tasks are both amenable to visualization support. Recent work has demonstrated significant progress for traditional force-on-force scenarios. –Wright, Kapler, "Visualization of Blue Forces Using Blobology", 2002 Command and Control Research and Technology Symposium, Monterrey, CA., June 2002. –Kapler, Wright, "Visualization of Self-Reporting Entities for Command and Control ", 7th International Command and Control Research and Technology Symposium, Quebec City, 2002. What about OOTW? The Canadian Forces have experience and expertise. Interest in exploring potential high payoff, leap-ahead visualization technologies that build on the success to date. Oculus CPOF C2 Visualization Innovative Entity Capabilities High Visibility 3D Terrain
4 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 4 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Some Notes Concerning this Project The term Operations Other than War (OOTW) covers a wide range of activities, for example Domestic Operations in Canada (Ice Storm 98), Humanitarian Assistance abroad (Honduran earthquake), or Peace Support Operations (Bosnia). To focus this project, confined investigation and analysis to Peace Support Operations. Conclusions and recommendations apply to other types of OOTW.
5 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 5 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Methodology Work with Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). Introductory presentation and demonstrations. Interviews, task analysis, issues analysis. “Visioning” – iterative brainstorming, design ideas and concept development. Information landscapes – sketches of innovative visual solutions: –High level functional specifications; –Expected value. Next steps.
6 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 6 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Subject Matter Experts and References LCol. Peter Bartlett (Ret.) Col. George Oehring (Ret.) LCol. Jack Springer (Ret.) LCol. Chris Sproule (Ret.) LCol. Greg Taylor (Ret.)
7 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 7 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. SME Interview Highlights - 1 There is no difference between OOTW and War. There is a continuum of operations … war, peace making, peace keeping. At any time, you need to be prepared to fight. OOTW analysis and decision processes are just like war. Never again will there be two sides and one line like Cyprus. The non-contiguous battlefield, with multiple belligerents, will be typical. There will be more and uglier PSOs. They will be increasingly complex, variable and unpredictable. Preparation for patrolling involved researching issues including who, where and what. The history of local commanders and incidents was reviewed. For success in negotiations, homework is key. You need to know what someone did before you. Not knowing gets you in trouble, or wastes your time by going over the same ground again and again. Tracking and being aware of history is important. For example, a ceasefire was organized around a religious calendar event. The event presented an opportunity and knowing about the event made it possible. The head of civil affairs had been there twenty months and had the history. You need to keep track of trends. What happened here? What keeps happening here? There are patterns. Belligerents keep trying the same thing with new rotations. When the attack came, it did come from the area where many previous earlier attacks had also originated. The discovery of emergent trends … persistent patterns … sooner rather than later would be useful. For example, the XXX Colonel that tends to show up in an area the day before something happens.
8 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 8 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. SME Interview Highlights - 2 We were not overwhelmed with information. We were overwhelmed with events, and never having enough information. So you often ended up reacting more than initiating. Any display must be customizable … smallpox, starvation, artillery, sandbags … things that piss people off. A lack of a historical record about events, factions, populations, culture, etc. is information that is lost. The same mistakes are made over and over. Agreements among factions take longer to make. We were supposed to protect the YYY. We didn’t even know how many there were. It would’ve been useful to have a profile of all the villages in the area. A clear depiction of the demographic situation. A recent record of all military activity in an area would be useful. Even if just 50 to 75% of the event record (war diaries) could be harnessed, made accessible and readily available, it would be a 200 times improvement. It would be a remarkable aid for you and for the people that follow you. Exerting effective C2 is hardest in OOTW since it’s based on information you don’t have. The situation is complex and detailed, and you don’t have the information to deal with it. You could step into a TOC for a classical military situation and get right up to speed. Not sure you could do that in OOTW.
9 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 9 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. SME Interviews Highlights - 3 Every six months a valuable knowledge base is created, and every six months, it's lost - make use of a knowledge base - "it is a valuable historical record" - "lack of the historical record contributes to loss of life“. Opportunity to facilitate valuable historical record. Record knowledge otherwise transient. –Supposed to protect XXX … didn’t even know how there were. –Useful to profile all villages in area. Clear depiction of demographic situation. –Recent record of all military activity in area would be useful. "Even if just 50 to 75% of the event record (war diaries) could be harnessed, made accessible and readily readable, it would be a 200 times improvement. It would be a remarkable aid to you and for the people that follow you.“ Exerting effective C2 hardest in OOTW since based on info you don’t have. –The situation is complex and detailed, and (with current systems) you don't have the information to deal with it. –You could step into a classical TOC military situation and get right up to speed. Not sure you could do that in OOTW.
10 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 10 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. OOTW Problem Statement Maintaining situation awareness is a complex and time consuming activity in many OOTW situations. Several belligerents may exist, each with their own forces, agendas, objectives and relationships. The peacemaker/keeper that is standing between them must monitor their activities and communicate with them in order to create and maintain stability. Each side is trying to deceive the other including the peacemaker/keeper. This situation may continue for months or years, and vary in intensity from supporting elections to full- scale war and genocide. The atmosphere is reactionary. In order to operate effectively towards a resolution, the peacemaker/keeper must have a clear understanding of the issues, context, motivation, personalities, geography and cultures involved, and they must know how these have changed over time. The ultimate goal is to fix problems, resolve issues and forge productive relationships.
11 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 11 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Events in Space and Time: Idea Understand history of events in a single picture Locate areas of activity Find out information about a place or time Generate an evolving, reusable, transferable history of events –Avoid repetition of mistakes –Reduce risks during force replacement/transition –Overwhelm opponents with knowledge Generate agreements faster?
12 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 12 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Events in Space and Time: Idea Picture is built up over time from many sources –Individual reports are geo-located and aggregated Input events –Descriptions, events, people, photos, comments, ToDo’s, recent patrols, communications etc Filters to find/view certain types of events Time Slider to review event sequentially on a map
13 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 13 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Event Tracking over Time: Examples of Current Systems
14 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 14 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Concept Sketch for SMEs: Events in Space and Time Current state + geography Parallel timelines connected to locations Many types of events marked in time Events connected over time and space Zoom in to focused areas Drill down to details, photos, reports etc
15 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 15 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. GeoTime Visualization Principle Diagram showing how individual frames of movement are translated into a continuous spatiotemporal representation
16 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 16 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. GeoTime Time Tracks Spatial Time tracks make possible the perception of where and when. Primary organizing device for display of events in time and space within a single view. Time-tracks represent a stream of time through a particular Location and are represented as a literal line in space.
17 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 17 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Events in Time & Space Integrated map, schedule, history and journal Combined spatiotemporal display –Track events in time and space concurrently “geospatial timelines” –Quickly see patterns Geographic display for large and small scales A tool for creating, viewing and retrieving operational information Many types of information Designed for use in the field or CP Vehicles People Events SITREPS Reports Notes Photos Movements Forces Organizations Patrols Boundaries Agreements Sensor coverage Airspace objects Combat capability Attrition Collaboration tools Inking 3D terrain shape Landmarks and Features Visibility Cultural Events Weather Political Events Scheduled Events Original design concept showing tracking of entity In time and space
18 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 18 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Icons and Symbols Events Conditions Objects Entities
19 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 19 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Events in Time and Space: Six Month Theatre View Contextual timelines future and past –Cultural, political, weather, deployment, schedules, etc Layer-based info display controls Totals over time See boundary movement over time Field example: 1 PPCLI MS Access DB – 3 weeks, 500 incidents, who- what-when-where, shot-bomb-fire- mine-meeting-kidnap-theft-assault.
20 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 20 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Portable Format 30-day Local View Visual Journal –Enter, Receive, Edit, and Confirm reports –Save photos, documents, notes, messages 3D tactical display –Terrain shape & features Setup alert zones Searchable database –by location, topic, keyword, date, etc
21 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 21 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Portable Format Horizontal Layout
22 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 22 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Supporting Innovative Functionality Extraordinary Detail –In OOTW, the same piece of ground is forever being disputed. This is a unique OOTW requirement. In geographical terms, it may mean seeing house-to-house detail. The same applies to people, events, organizations, and issues. In a village of 100 houses, 400 people, and anything from perhaps one to ten events per day (depending on conflict level), this aggregates to hundreds to thousands of events in a year... just for that one village! This is a challenge. Data Cleansing –Envisioning an information environment with field reports coming in from many sources, in varying levels of detail, on overlapping topics, means data cleansing will be important. Commanders and staff will need to efficiently and quickly see priorities, redundancies, errors, conflicts and uniqueness. Flexible Multi-dimensional Filters –Allow commanders to focus on events by location, by feature, by echelon, by mission, by priority of information, by source, etc. More than just "one dimensional" filtering is possible. Allow commanders to select and combine filters to "find" the issues and "construct" an awareness.
23 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 23 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Use Case Scenarios Six Month Handover. Formation Redeployment.
24 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 24 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Use Case Scenarios (a) Six Month Handover Review. Battalion Commander presents a handover briefing to incoming replacement Our deployment zone and terrain features are on this first display: These are the boundary areas and how they shift, main routes, and deployments in flanking sectors. Previous and current OPs and patrol routes are displayed here, including this historical timeline of major events, and records of scheduling problems for water and bridge usage, which have been a major reason for confrontation in this sector. Belligerent organization, deployment, and emplacements are highlighted on this next series of displays: The first display shows organization of belligerent forces, with their key leadership and chain of command. Mr X of XENO causes the most problems. Belligerents have been pushing back and forth in the areas shown on this display, and the associated timeline shows major incidents that have occurred. Please review my notes from negotiations between belligerent forces. You can see my travel schedule on this display, and links to the meetings, personalities, and agreements I have worked on. You will be expected to continue in a similar fashion. Boundary conflicts have regularly occurred in 2 hotspots: Belligerent forward lines have shifted back and forth as shown on this display Incidents have been synchronized with the movement of Gen Stavros, who has a history of lying and breaking agreements OP “Catwalk” can expect continued activity of the sort shown on the timeline. Upcoming cultural dates displayed on this timeline may lead to increased tensions Religious holiday may result in many requests for civilians crossing boundaries. There is a history of resulting disturbances. Finally, the Red Cross runs refugee centers here Extra support is required on these access routes for protection.
25 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 25 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Use Case Scenarios (b) Formation Redeployment. A UN sector of four battalions is to be reduced in strength by one unit owing to a nation’s withdrawal just prior to the second year of a peacekeeping mission (Not an unusual UN experience!). The UN sector (brigade) commander must devise an immediate plan to realign the remaining three battalions and redistribute the formation’s undiminished tasks. The commander concludes that the main factors affecting the redeployment are Location, nature and frequency of belligerent military activity Location, type and likely intent of opposing and potentially opposing forces Centres of continuing humanitarian and security efforts Using the Visualization tools described here the commander is able to quickly - Identify historical military “hot spots” that must be addressed by either, some, or all of the sector’s defensive deployment, mere presence, observation, and/or patrols, etc Assess which of the sector’s differing unit(s) is/are best suited for the above tasks Determine the distribution of tasks based on specific unit strengths, geographic and cultural dimensions and relative equity Issue new written and graphical orders The initial deployment, which was typically based on a unit strength/size of area equation (i.e. cookie-cutter) becomes a strength/intent based deployment; thus: Typical strength/area (cookie-cutter)New strength/intent deployment enabled by OOTW deploymentVisualization Tools
26 Confidential and © 2002 Oculus Info Inc. and Others 26 Proprietary and © 2002-2004 Oculus Info Inc. Conclusions GeoTime concept is a new interactive information visualization technique that fuses the two previously separate paradigms of mapping and scheduling. Shows multiple types of information in a map-oriented display, providing context and trends over time. Allow commanders to gain better understanding of complex current events. Many levels of detail would be accessible and viewable. The intent of GeoTime is to allow the commander to quickly react to events with insight. One benefit imagined would be derived just from the belligerents knowing that PSO forces can maintain knowledge, can track recurring events, and be quickly aware of complex situations soon after arriving in an area of operation. More confidence would be created. Fewer “testing” events by belligerents would need to be dealt with during the mission.
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