chapter  1
14 Pages

INTRODUCTION

CHANCES are the Stone Age ancestor found that, if his hunting and defense weapon consisted of a club-shaped rock fastened to a length of tree branch, he could survive the attacks of small animals by clubbing them on the head. We can also guess that he eventually discovered that, if the edge of the club were chipped off to form a point, it would penetrate the hide of much larger animals, thus significantly increasing the possibility of prolonging his life in the event of an attack. If he were unlucky enough to break this club head with the sharp point, or if he were to lose it, we can be reasonably sure that, when he decided to make a replacement, he would attempt to chip one edge of a rock ex­ actly like the one that worked so well before. This principle of survival is probably one of the earliest examples of quality control: “in order to survive, make it like the last one.”