TROST: Open-System Trustworthiness

i051002 TROST InfoNote
What Computers Know


0.80 2014-02-08 09:58 -0800

In exploring what it means to associate trustworthiness with software, I chose to look at the software delivery process, what we have come to call the deployment of the software into use.  That led me to wonder how to characterize just exactly what is delivered and the relationship in which its producers and adopters are engaged.  From there it became important to understand how we manage to have a computer carry out procedures of which it can have no comprehension of the intended purpose.  Building from that perspective, I propose to tease out exactly how it is that computation works and what it takes to arrive at computer-augmented systems in support of human enterprise.

— Dennis E. Hamilton
Seattle, Washington
February 3, 2006

1. Approach

This TROST InfoNote is the first stage of a five-part development.  The culmination is an approach to the trustworthy accomplishment of computer-augmented systems:

A. What Computers Know
Establishing that the innate behavior of a computer lacks all knowledge of the external world and the purpose for the computational procedures that are performed
B. The Working of Computation
The relationship between the representation of a computation as carried out by computer and the purposeful function it realizes
C. What Programmers (Should) Know
The invention required to establish a computer representation that fits the intended purpose and use of the computational procedure
D. Enterprise-Situated Computing
The life cycles in which software, its support and its revisions are introduced into the work processes and activities of an enterprise
E. Trustworthy Accomplishment
Practices by which trustworthiness is demonstrated and preserved in the stages of software development and in the engagement of developers and adopters as the software is introduced, maintained, and ultimately retired

2. Document Engineering

3. Additional Resources

see also:
2006-02-14 Praxis 101: Virtuous Pain of Documentation
2006-02-10 Praxis 101: What Computers Know Can't Help Me, Most of the Work Is Mine
2006-02-03 Orcmid's Lair: What Computers Know
2005-10-25 Orcmid's Lair: What Programmers Do


Hamilton, Dennis E. (2006)
What Computers Know.  Information Note i051002 0.80 web pages,, 2006-09-04.  Progressive versions available at <>.
Revision History:
0.80 2006-09-04-13:29 Link Updates
The blog article corresponding to i051002f is linked as an additional resource.  Links to external material are corrected and supplemented in this version.
0.75 2006-02-03-06:25 Current Published Version
A published version is created that is the basis for a blog article on the subject.
0.25 2005-10-26-10:58 Rough Draft posting
Provide table of content available so far and used for rough-draft review
0.00 2005-10-12-05:24 Establish Placeholder for Pending Material
Also start a job jar page for recording work items for building more content.  This page is a customization of the InfoNote Bootstrap Template 0.20 template.  A version from Develop InfoNote Bootstrap Template 0.20 Material was used.

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created 2005-10-12-05:24 -0700 (pdt) by orcmid
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