by Leon Rosenshein

Scrape To Taste

our system of make-and-inspect, which if applied to making toast would be expressed: “You burn, I’ll scrape.”

-- W. Edwards Deming

After 2 weeks at sea, just a quick thought on testing and quality. You can’t test quality into a product or system. I think testing is critical. Unit tests, integration tests, exploratory tests, visual tests, and sometimes, fun-ness tests. But as important as they are, all you can do with after the fact testing is make sure that you don’t inflict known defects on your users. That’s critical, and we need to make sure we do enough of it, but we can’t rely on it.

I’m not sure when Deming first said it, but I’ve seen it quoted as far back as 1991. If you want consistent quality output you need to design the system to produce it, not just throw out things that don’t meet the requirements. If you want to consistently and quickly deliver a quality product you need a culture that values that quality. Otherwise you end up moving faster and delivering value later.