"There is a vast difference between quality control and quality improvement, passive statistical tools such as Shewhart control charts are useful for quality control, to determine whether the process under surveillance shows any signs of going out of its state of statistical control. On the other hand, more active tools are needed for quality and productivity improvement. In order to improve a process or a product, it is often helpful to use experimental designs in developing a mathematical equation or set of equations to relate the response(s) of interest to important process and environmental variables. Such models can aid in understanding how the relevant processes work so they can be modified in desirable ways. This report contains a practical suggestion that model-builders may find helpful. It involves synthesizing response functions of interest by starting with the simpler task of constructing models for component responses or subsets of them."
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