[FoRK] A thought on Design and Quality

Ken Ganshirt @ Yahoo ken_ganshirt at yahoo.ca
Wed Oct 7 13:24:23 PDT 2009

--- On Wed, 10/7/09, Eugen Leitl <eugen at leitl.org> wrote:
> > Whether or not they /need/ to be able to run all that
> > is an entirely different question... 
> See, that's more the problem. I hesitate to go back to
> more spartanic environments. But sooner or later, it probably
> has to happen. 

Not necessarily. It only has to happen if you want to increase the probability of reliability. And it also explains the higher reliability environments refered to.

One primary means of improving/controlling reliability is to control the interactions. The fewer untested interactions in the system, the more reliable it will be.

Another primary means is, don't change anything. If the system sits there churning through the same basket of fairly thoroughly tested code constantly, you can count on it to be pretty reliable. 

A computer ops maxim: "When change happens, shit happens (or, Never allow changes on Friday afternoon.)."

The amazing thing about modern desktop operating systems is that they manage to run for more than a couple of hours without blowing up. This is in spite of users who will stick any old thing on the system in combinations that no operating system or application developer could possibly predict.


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