From: Vic Smith on
On Sat, 30 Jan 2010 15:22:48 -0500, dr_jeff <utz(a)> wrote:
>I do know about quality assurance and software engineering, for I have
>experience in both.
>So, as usual, I am commenting on something I understand.

Nobody understands it until it's resolved.
I'm a retired systems analyst, and I won't speculate too far.
Software bugs can be hidden for years, and until they pop up nobody's
the wiser. The system doesn't even have to very complex if inadequate
testing was done. That's mostly been solved in the business area, but
when Windows goes blue screen anybody can see it's far from a perfect
art or science.
Reason I mentioned chip flakiness is because I've run across it in
building PC's. A high quality mem chip, which passed all the tests I
could give it, failed the test of a Win XP install.
The install would freeze every time loading a DLL. Same DLL every
time. Of course that's what the XP load screen said.
What was really executing and causing the freeze I can't say.
And that raises the issue of diagnostics equipment and the software it
uses. If an electronic bug is uncommon and/or transient, the
diagnostics might not see it.
Anyway, I wasted many hours on it going down false tracks, then I
found an obscure posting on the internet where somebody had a similar
problem and found that changing a mem chip fixed it.
Chip worked fine on a different computer, so it may have been a
combination chip/bus anomaly.
Hachiroku mentioned chip quality, testing and fail-safes done in the
defense industry. I don't think Mr Coffee or Toyota has those
standards. Nor that they need them.
Anyway, this might all be moot, as I'm hearing it's the gas pedal!
Now that is mind-boggling!

From: Mike Hunter on
But, but but, dr_jeff you told us you were an MD

"dr_jeff" <utz(a)> wrote in message
> Mike Hunter wrote:
>> If you don't know, dr_jeff, what Toyota and other car makers do in that
>> regard, why are you commenting on something you admit you know nothing
>> about, again?
> I do know about quality assurance and software engineering, for I have
> experience in both.
> So, as usual, I am commenting on something I understand.
> Jeff
>> "dr_jeff" <utz(a)> wrote in message
>> news:hrudnVnZoopfu_nWnZ2dnUVZ_uRi4p2d(a)
>>> Vic Smith wrote:
>>>> On Thu, 28 Jan 2010 22:12:53 -0500, dr_jeff <utz(a)> wrote:
>>>>> Tell that to the pilot of the Airbus A-320.
>>>>> I have to disagree that fly-by-wire is too flaky or that microchips
>>>>> are too flaky. There are certainly bugs, but those bugs will be worked
>>>>> out. Computers can react far faster than humans. Computers control a
>>>>> lot of critical function; car engines are just one of them.
>>>>> Jeff
>>>> I'd have to see the cost and quality of the A-320 control chips, and
>>>> their engineering and programming to buy that comparison.
>>>> For all I know the chips controlling the acceleration in drive-by-wire
>>>> cars are sourced from the same outfit making chips for Mr Coffee.
>>>> --Vic
>>> So? I haven't seen reports of runaway Mr. Coffees. I am sure the chips
>>> are made to high quality standards. The issue really is the programming
>>> and quality assurance (which is testing of how well the programs work,
>>> particularly in unexpected situations). I don't know what Toyota and
>>> other car makers do in that regard.