virus: Re: Evaluating Math

Lior Golgher (
Fri, 29 Nov 1996 15:25:53 -0800

Todd Kuipers wrote:
> This reminds me of "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance"
Yap, in my post I aimed to the concept of 'quality' as presented by
Pirsig in his great book. As david pointed out, the characteristics of
an object can be dealt by Cohesive Math. How good is a certain object?
That's something you can't count with Cohesive Math.

> I think Pirsig did something like this in his book.
Well if he had done such a thing, I wouldn't have raised the question.

If quality is subjective, and I think it is, then Evaluating Math should
be subjective too, just like Aesthetics.

> It would be interesting to see if the members of this list had a consensus on
> quality measurement or at least a portion of it. A formula form could be
> quality=sum(a(n)*w), where "a" are the attributes, "n" would the specific
> attribute and "w" would be the weighting applied to the attribute (as not all
> attributes are equal?).
By 'attribute' do you mean something like 'criterion'? As Pirsig well
explained in his book, quality can't be calculated according to fixed
criterions [The part in which Phidaros (sp?) teaches Rhethoric - He
realizes that his students can't reach quality by memorizing certain
rules and exceptions].

So, how *can* we measure quality?