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Questions about Metrics

Questions Workshop Apr 20, 2022 (Apr 21, 2022) Loading...

Background materials to the Questions Workshop


  • What is this a proxy for?
  • Why is this a good proxy?
  • What does this  measurement tell us?
  • What situations suit this metric?
  • Does this metric lead you to enquiries, or offer answers?


  • Under what circumstances might it stop being a good proxy?
  • What does this metric leave out?
  • Under what circumstances might it decieve you?
  • How might someone else use it to to game the system, or to deceive you?


  • How do you measure this metric?
  • Does it need to be measured regularly to make sense?
  • How frequently should the measure be taken?
  • Is it noisy, and how do we deal with the noise?
  • Does it aggregate several other metrics?
  • Is it delayed, and what it the lag?
  • Does the metric very by who is measuring it?
  • is this a relative metric, or absolute?
  • What are the units?


  • What does “going up” mean for this metric?
  • What does “going down” mean for this metric?
  • Can it go up and down?
  • What does 0 mean?
  • Can it go negative? What does that mean?
  • Do non-integer values make sense? What do they mean?
  • Is everything it counts as a unit the same size?
  • Is there a minimum? What does minimum mean?
  • Is there a maximum? What does maximum mean?
  • What does no change mean?
  • What does slow change mean? What is slow for this measure?
  • What does fast change mean? What is fast, for this measure?
  • What might it mean if  doing work, over a given period, makes no change to the metric?
  • Can the measure change little, but what is measured change a lot (i.e. there are still 10 failures, but they're all new)
  • What trends are interesting? Over what periods?
  • Is the change, or rate of change, more interesteing than the actual value?
  • What other measures generally change in the same way, or the opposite way? What might be happening in circumstances where this corrleation breaks down?
  • Do you have a model which attempts to explain this metric? WHere does that model break down?

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