Bruce's part 2 reply to Steve

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Bruce's part 2 reply to Steve

Craig Carey-2
On Apr 6,  3:41am, Mike Ossipoff wrote:

> Subject: Re: Bruce's part 2 reply to Steve
> Bruce Anderson writes:
>
> >
> > I intentionally, but (in hindsight) perhaps mistakenly, used the word
> > "standards" because I was responding to Mike and he used that word.  I would
>  prefer the words "criteria" and "attributes."  A criterion must be able to be
> >applied to every voting method in a class specified by the criterion, such as
> the class of ranked-ballot single-winner voting methods, and it must be worded
> > sufficiently precisely that it is mathematically provable whether or not any
> > given well-defined voting method in that class satisfies that criterion
according to (and only to) that wording.  Conversely, an attribute (feel free to

>suggest an alternative word, if you'd like) is an intuitive but vaguely defined
> > concept, which reasonable people can express opinions on, but which any
> > particular voting method cannot be mathematically or scientifically proven
> > either to possess or to fail to possess.
>
> No, "standard" is a really basic word, and the right word for something
> that we judge things by. A way of judging things. "Attribute" or
> "property" are words that I sometimes use too, but they don't have
> the same meaning as "standard". "Standard" is the main word in the
> English language for the purpose we're using it for. I don't think
> we'd consider replacing it.
>
> "Criterion" is a word that means to me pretty much what it means
> to you: A yes/no test that can be applied to a method. Maybe that
> doesn't sound exactly like your definition, but we seem to use
> the word the same way. A criterion can be a standard, if you really
> believe that that criterion is important enough. But a standard
> needn't be a criterion. A standard needn't be stated in the way
> that you (Bruce) say that criteria must be stated. A standard is
> valid without being stated in that way. I repeat that this isn't
> a mathematical journal, and the public aren't a mathematical journal
> readership. Standards can be perfectly valid without being said
> the way that mathematicians like things to be said.
>
> English is the language at which we should meet.
>
>-- End of excerpt from Mike Ossipoff

According to my dictionary:

cri·te·ri·on (krº-tîr“-…n) n., pl. cri·te·ri·a (-tîr“-…) or cri·te·ri·ons. A
standard, rule, or test on which a judgment or decision can be based. See
Synonyms at  standard.

stan·dard (st²n“d…rd) n. Abbr. std.  2.a. An acknowledged measure of comparison
for quantitative or qualitative value; a criterion. b. An object that under
specified conditions defines, represents, or records the magnitude of a unit.  
5.a. A degree or level of requirement, excellence, or attainment. b. Often
standards. A requirement of moral conduct.
SYNONYMS: standard, benchmark, criterion, gauge, measure, touchstone, yardstick.
The central meaning shared by these nouns is “a point of reference against which
individuals are compared and evaluated”: a book that is a standard of literary
excellence; a painting that is a benchmark of quality; educational criteria;
behavior that is a gauge of self-control; government funding, a measure of the
importance of the arts; success, a touchstone of opportunity, ambition, and
ability; farm failures, a yardstick of federal banking policy.

at·trib·ute  (²t“r…-by›t”) n. 1. A quality or characteristic inherent in or
ascribed to someone or something. 2. An object associated with and serving to
identify a character, a personage, or an office: Lightning bolts are an
attribute of Zeus. See Synonyms at quality.

qual·i·ty (kw¼l“¹-t) n., pl. qual·i·ties. Abbr. qlty. 1.a. An inherent or
distinguishing characteristic; a property. b. A personal trait, especially a
character trait: someone with few redeeming qualities. 2. Essential character;
nature: Mahogany has the quality of being durable. 3.a. Superiority of kind: an
intellect of unquestioned quality. b. Degree or grade of excellence: yard goods
of low quality.
SYNONYMS: quality, property, attribute, character, trait. These nouns all
signify a feature that distinguishes or identifies someone or something. Quality
is the most inclusive: “The spring of water . . . entirely lost the
deliciousness of its pristine quality” (Nathaniel Hawthorne). “From now on an
artist will be judged only by the resonance of his solitude or the quality of
his despair” (Cyril Connolly). “The most vital quality a soldier can possess is
self-confidence” (George S. Patton). A property is a basic or essential quality
possessed by all members of a class: Resilience is a property of rubber. An
attribute is a quality that is ascribed to someone or something: “God and all
the attributes of God are eternal” (Spinoza). Character in this comparison is a
distinctive feature of a group or category: “Natural Selection, entailing
Divergence of Character and the Extinction of less-improved forms” (Charles
Darwin). A trait is a single, clearly delineated characteristic, as of a person
or group of people: “This reliance on authority is a fundamental primitive
trait” (James Harvey Robinson).

But I'd be glad to change:

Conversely, an attribute (feel free to suggest an alternative word, if you'd
like) is an intuitive but vaguely defined concept, which reasonable people can
express opinions on, but which any particular voting method cannot be
mathematically or scientifically proven either to possess or to fail to possess.

to:

Conversely, an attribute is an intuitively defined concept, which reasonable
people can express opinions on, but which any particular voting method cannot be
mathematically or scientifically proven either to possess or to fail to possess.

Bruce