I taste beer according to this hierarchy listed from most important to least important
1. Evidence of off flavours (DMS, H2S, Diacetyl, bacterial, wild yeast etc)
2. Technical merit (how difficult the beer is to brew)
3. Balance of flavours
4. ‘Commerciability’ (will the average drinker like it?)
5. Character (will the beer enthusiast like it?)
6. Do I like it (this is strongly influenced by the 3 above)
Most drinkers are only concerned with the last point. Rate beer reviewers and beer enthusiasts are probably only concerned with the last two points along with another which is individuality. The more you understand about beer the more complex tasting beer becomes. For a brewer the machine (his/her palate and brain) measuring the beer has a great deal more functions, whistles and bells.
Next time you are enjoying your beer spare a thought for the poor commercial brewer for whom beer will never be as much as fun again!