Measurement Challenge: Specification and Design
‘Measurement is not an end in itself …’ might seem to be a paradoxical way of introducing a book about measurement. But measurement is important to the majority since it gives objective evidence on which to base decisions. The need for quality-assured measurement has evolved and widened over the centuries. Quality-assured measurement remains a topic of burgeoning and increasingly multidisciplinary interest.
This book will deliberately not follow the many exposés already in the literature which set the subject of measurement in a historical context, however evocative that may be. In-depth accounts of how the ancient Egyptians or bold navigators struggled when pioneering quality-assured measurement will be mostly left to others to present.
There is a need and a challenge to formulate a unified view of measurement. To this end, most of this first chapter of the book—as well as the last—will paradoxically not deal directly with measurement, but rather the objects—products, services, concepts, etc. and their characteristics—which are the concern of many people, who then ask metrologists to measure them. The first and last chapters thus provide object-related ‘bookends’—supporting a description of quality-assured measurement which is the central issue.
Presenting measurement in relation to objects will allow measurements to be anchored in relevance and interest for third parties. As it turns out, the approach also provides the key to a unified presentation about quality-assured measurement across social and physical sciences where objects are probed by man as a measurement instrument.
This chapter, as for most chapters in the book, concludes with templates provided for the reader to complete the corresponding sections of the measurement task for their chosen case.
KeywordsProduct Quality assurance 3rd party interests Measurement Unified Multidisciplinary Social science Physical science
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