Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 7th Mar 2011 23:21 UTC
Legal Well, how about some positive news to end this day? How about annoying the heck out of the Business Software Alliance? There's a new proposal for a directive on consumer rights in the EU, and in it, digital goods - software, online services, and so on - are explicitly defined as goods that are no different than any other good - like bread, watches, or cars. In other words, you would suddenly own the copies of software you buy, effectively declaring the EULA as a worthless piece of paper. Surprise - the BSA is not happy about this.
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RE[2]: Um, I disagree
by allanregistos on Tue 8th Mar 2011 08:32 UTC in reply to "RE: Um, I disagree"
Member since:

"Software components are infinitely more complex than your average physical good, and their interactions can cause unintended/unanticipated/unreasonable problems for the original software developer.

Only in the deluded imaginations of so called software "engineers" is software more complex than physical goods. The very fact that 12 yo kids can write reasonable software shows this argument to be utter nonsense.

The average programmer is no more an "engineer" than a child making a Lego house.
You both are on the extreme side of things. It depends. The answer of software's complexity is yes and no. Yes, it is complex, when you are in systems programming. Creating kernel drivers for your peripherals to whatever OS is a complex task, but not infinitely. Writing an operating system for space vehicles that _must_ be defect free is more complex than writing kernel drivers alone(being part of that task). Writing an Office Software comparable to MS Office's must be more complex than writing a piece of software to monitor your inventory stocks.

However, software is 100% defect free and very simple when you write it at the level of "Hello World" program.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Um, I disagree
by bert64 on Tue 8th Mar 2011 11:43 in reply to "RE[2]: Um, I disagree"
bert64 Member since:

Exactly, if software (or anything for that matter) is kept simple its easy to be defect free, and easy to understand exactly whats going on... Simple machinery is often more reliable and easier to fix than complex machinery for the same reason, far easier to understand how it works and why its not working.

The more complex something is, the greater chances of defects creeping in, and the problem is that software has increased in complexity much faster than anyone has the ability to keep track of it.

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RE[4]: Um, I disagree
by Neolander on Tue 8th Mar 2011 15:38 in reply to "RE[3]: Um, I disagree"
Neolander Member since:

Every piece of software should be like xkill.

Press a keystroke, instantly see the mouse cursor change (visual feedback).
Left-click a window to kill the program (instantly, no nonsensical delay), right-click to quit the "killing" mode.

This program must be, say, 15 LOC long at worst, yet it's so incredibly useful everyone I've shown it to loves it and want it on his Windows/OSX system.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Um, I disagree
by Lennie on Tue 8th Mar 2011 13:47 in reply to "RE[2]: Um, I disagree"
Lennie Member since:

There is one difference, when software is used it is not used the same way the programmmer created it.

Let's say your hello world was created in C, it will be translated to binary and later on when it is used on a x86 CPU, the CPU interpretes it and recodes it in RISC like instructions.

This shows that there is a lot of inherit complexity in the system itself.

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RE[4]: Um, I disagree
by TheGZeus on Tue 8th Mar 2011 19:43 in reply to "RE[3]: Um, I disagree"
TheGZeus Member since:

That's outright obtuse.

Reply Parent Score: 2