Currently in vogue is the ability to summarize an organization's "business productivity" to senior managers using pithy representations that are expected to carry deep meaning and, at the same time, reduce the attention required to absorb that meaning. Business productivity management systems engage key performance indicators whose values are posted to executive dashboards for the CEO's periodic (be it daily or hourly) review. The intention of these applications is to provide a presentation of the current state of the environment in the context of reasonable expectations. In other words, a business manager wants to have an overview of the "value creation" of the entire system, much the same way a nuclear engineer gauges different metrics associated with the safety status of the nuclear reactors.
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