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The requirements analysis described in the last section leads to the identification of a set of attributes whose value is potentially of interest in the context of evaluating a product or a class of products in order to assess their potential utility to a user or a class of users.

It is perhaps worth mentioning again here that, because we are interested in the needs of classes of different kinds of users, the complete set of attribute-value pairs identified may contain individual members which are mutually inconsistent or even in downright contradiction. To give a simple example, one class of users may require a constraint that any product, to be useful to them, must run on a particular hardware platform, another class that the product must not be specifically tied to that same hardware platform. Part of performing a specific evaluation is using a user profile to pick out the sub-set of attributes and critical values relevant to that particular evaluation.