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Re: "Infinite Defects"

  I am glad to see the issue of low quality being raised because it does
  reflect a widespread problem in the industry, especially the mass-market
  software industry.
  Several of Microsoft's competitors have also released versions that were so
  bug-ridden that they had to issue recalls. Other companies chose not to
  recall their products. Instead, they toughed it out with their customers,
  sometimes giving people free upgrades, sometimes selling upgrades. As an
  extreme case, Bugnet magazine dubbed WordPerfect 6.1 the Queen of GPF's
  after it crashed at one site in one week something like 6000 times. You can
  probably get the info from bugnet's website, http://www.bugnet.com.
  Customer dissatisfaction due to defects, unusability, and poor support, is
  quite high: http://www.badsoftware.com/stats.htm.
  This is not a unique problem to Microsoft. I should note that I have taught
  courses on software testing at several companies, including Microsoft. I
  think that Microsoft does a pretty good job, relative to other companies
  with whose processes I am familiar, in finding and prioritizing its bugs.
  I am not suggesting that I think that MS software is perfect. In some
  cases, I've been very upset. (I downloaded IE 4.0, for example, and removed
  it after Quicken started frequently crashing on me. Those changes to Win 95
  that IE 4.0 put in apparently made the OS quicken-incompatible. Just a
  coincidence, I'm sure.)
  -- Cem Kaner
  At 07:47 AM 11/17/97 -0500, Luc-Etienne Brachotte wrote:
  >Pieter Nagel wrote:
  >> On Mon, 17 Nov 1997, Luc-Etienne Brachotte wrote:
  >> >     "   The Opus project, later renamed Word for Windows, caused
  >> >      staffers to coin the now-famous phrase "infinite defects". This de-
  >> >      scribes a situation where testers are finding bugs faster than de-
  >> >      velopers can fix them, and each fix leads to yet another bug;
  >> This situation is not specific to Microsoft. It is a general problem
  >> in the software industry. There are various software engineering
  >> methodologies which aim to prevent this, but not one is genrally
  >> accepted as The Best.
  >Yes, sure, but
  >1) the products are Word, Excel, Access used by 50 or 100 millions
  >2) M$ is one of the only company to sell the product, even if it not yet
  >stabilized ! If you buy a M$ product you must always remember
  >"this contained so many bugs that Microsoft had to recall the product"
  >(even if it send in this case free remplacements, which M$ did not more) 
  >"It also became difficult and impossible in some cases to deliver
  >     reliable products"
  >It became impossible, but M$ *did* deliver it, non-reliable !
  >That's what concern/worry me ! (even if I presented it in a funny way in
  >the last post ;-))
  >Remember also
  >    "the now-famous phrase "infinite defects""
  >it is now *famous* at M$, since it seems to have been the case for
  >several years ! in the company which present BG as a "genius both
  >programmer and executive".
  >            .~~~.  )) 
  >  (\__/)  .'     )  ))              Luc-Etienne BRACHOTTE
  >  /o o  \/     .~                           AIRIAL
  > {o_,    \    {                         3, Rue Bellini
  >   / ,  , )    \                       PUTEAUX (France)
  >   `~  '-' \    } ))
  >  _(    (   )_.'        E-mail: Luc-Etienne.Brachotte@art.alcatel.fr
  > '---..{____}
  Cem Kaner, J.D., Ph.D.				       Attorney at Law 
  P.O. Box 1200           Santa Clara, CA 95052             408-244-7000
  Author (with Falk &  Nguyen) of TESTING COMPUTER SOFTWARE (2nd Ed, VNR)
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