Re: virus: quality

Erik (
Mon, 17 May 1999 20:15:41 -0700

Polly sez: eye of the beholder....brawwwk (read: parrot squawk)

Throw some things like "robustness" and "long-lasting" around and it seems like you're just obfuscating the "qualities" you're trying to define.

But, if you're running a company in the late nineties, it's a great buzzword (meme)
to toss around. Perhaps obfuscation is the point.....

-----Original Message-----
From: Eric Boyd <> To: <> Date: Monday, May 17, 1999 7:00 PM
Subject: virus: quality

>Wade T.Smith <> writes:
>>>One creates demand by providing quality.
>Pretty much a maxim already. Or is demand an achievement of quality?
>what _is_ quality?
>What is quality? (uh oh... I'll probably lose half my audience in the
>next sentence) My theory is that quality is a measure of the "goodness
>of fit" between a problem and a proposed solution. For instance, the
>quality of an essay is dependent on how well the essay answers the
>question it (supposedly) addresses. The quality of a television is
>dependent on how well it performs (proposed solution) the tasks
>required of it (the problem) -- and since these tasks can vary, the
>same 12" television may be of low quality for one gal in one place
>(who needs a large screen in her entertainment room), but of high
>quality for another guy in a different place (who wants a little TV in
>his bedroom).
>I admit that this theory is a bit 'rough and ready', but that is
>almost to be expected -- quality is a *fundamental* aspect of our
>interaction with reality, so anything less /basic/ would fail to
>capture it's essence. (see: Persig, Robert M. _Zen and the Art of
>Motorcycle Maintanence_, 1974)
>What can we provide that is of high quality here?
>That depends on what you view the "problem" of Virus as. I think that
>a high quality post to virus is defined by
>(1) the clarity with which it's ideas are expressed
>(2) the truth or usefulness of it's message to Virians.
>You're free to hold up a different standard for measure; in which case
>your assessment of quality will differ from mine.
>I spent about two hundred hours ranking the virus achives according to
>a similar (but more broad and less explicit) criteria -- I would like
>to think that there is general agreement that such a standard defines