[trustable-software] Exploring the "Hypothesis for software to be trustable"

trustable at panic.fluff.org trustable at panic.fluff.org
Wed Jan 3 14:04:55 GMT 2018

On Wed, 3 Jan 2018, Paul Sherwood wrote:

> On 2018-01-03 11:20, trustable at panic.fluff.org wrote:
>> On Wed, 3 Jan 2018, Paul Sherwood wrote:
>>> Edmund - so far I haven't concluded that we need to be able to measure 
>>> everything. If you believe that we *do* need to measure something like 
>>> this, can you justify why?
>>> br
>>> Paul
>>   So I believe that without the ability to measure we are unable
>> evaluate change and so we cannot assess risk or uncertainty.
> Not true, IMO. Animals have been assessing risk/uncertainty instinctively for 
> millennia, without 'the ability to measure'.
> A surprising amount of crucial decisions need to be taken based on instinct.
        I'm not disputing this, however, if you want your decisions to be 
reproducible, that is to say capable of being assessed for validity they 
require some form of reproducible measure.

       You could argue that we regular fool ourselves and suffer from 
oberver bias because we never record what our measures are for success.

>> To quote a conversation elsewhere discussing the following volume
>>   [https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00INUYS2U]
>> " 1. Management cares about measurements because measurements inform
>>      uncertain decisions.
> Measurements can inform. Often they misinform.
   Again I don't disagree with this, but we can ONLY learn whether these 
measures are misinformation if we record them and apply them. Their value 
is in the ability to look with clarity retrospecively and assess the usage 
of those measusres

>>   2. For any decision or set of decisions, there are a large combination
>>      of things to measure and ways to measure them but perfect certainty
>>      is rarely a realistic option.
> Agreed.
>>  3. Therefore, management needs a method to analyze options for reducing
>>     uncertainty about decisions. "
> OK, but it doesn't work for everything, and IME management cannot reply 
> entirely on any 'method'. We have to make decisions in the presence of 
> uncertainty.
>> I'd make the point that though designing experiments which allow us to
>> measure things can sometimes be complex, without being able to do this
>> we are unable to confirm our findings and verify that the cause of
>> aberrant behaviour in the systems or the construction of the systems.
> If you're holding to the line that we have to measure everything, I'm 
> disagreeing.
> br
> Paul
    I believe that the it is VERY complex to assess whether one has 
achieved anything without some measure to assess against. I also strongly 
hold the view that for a system to be reproducible, such as a system which 
builds software, then that system must be composed of measures to ensure 
we are agregated and presenting consistent data


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