The “Kobayashi Maru” exercise is simply an exercise designed on no-win scenario. As depicted in the movie, Captain James T. Kirk was one of the participants who passed this exercise with outside-the-box solution, by cheating.

The exercise reflects the undeniable truth. Real world adversaries and threat actors don’t have rules to play with. They find weaknesses and exploit relationship, trust, human behavior or anything that vulnerable and profitable by their objective. This give us disadvantage for anyone who plays by rules.

In the challenge conducted by the instructor, they forced the students to observe any factors which can be used as techniques to pass this exercise. So, the students was forced to creatively think with adversary mindset in vary ways e.g. exploit the environment or human’s social factors.

The original paper is here.