You are here: Start

Incremental Improvement

Sir Karl R. Popper, the British Philosopher of Science, formed the sentence: “We are mistaken in advance!” Quality, meta-theoretically, cannot be understood as perfection, basically not as optimisation either, but rather as an action choice, which finds, as appropriate, a suitable answer to the matter concerned. When closing security gaps in software, one also created new, different possibilities to hack them. Every advance creates an error which cannot be noticed immediately, but which someone, who does not share the organisational blindness of the other, can recognise. Therefore, those who occupy themselves with the quality of work results in a complex, non-trivial environment, will rely on incremental (=step by step) procedures, rather than on a ‘great breakthrough’. Every breakthrough is provisional in the long run. This is not a shortcoming, but rather an expression of the fact that from all achievements, new decision requirements arise and become necessary. Formulated in the abstract: freedom creates further freedom. For the guiding process, handling the past, this means that learning enables further learning and, for the guiding process quality focus, it carries the consequence that improvements in speed bring with them a cost in the degree of perfection (and vice versa). Product optimisation must, therefore, always keep an eye on the respective pole, and remain conscious of the fact that the opposite pole will be adversely affected.