“If you Want Messages, Stop Shooting the Messengers”

“It’s important that companies who choose transparency be given a measurable economic advantage over those who choose obscurity. In order for the vicious cycle of proprietary hardware to be broken, both consumer and producer have to express a willingness to value openness.”

I don’t know how this could work out in practice, and I don’t know whether I would buy into it, but I hadn’t understood the practical impact of the FDIV award on hardware documentation before.

The “blameless retro” works well (improves overall quality over time better than assigning blame) when values are shared between the participants. I’m not sure I see enough shared values out there, though. ☹


Spectre/Meltdown Pits Transparency Against Liability: Which is More Important to You? « bunnie’s blog

Alan Cox February 02, 2018 06:51

I am not going to comment on the articles arguments for obvious reasons.

There are however some factual inaccuracies about liability that might get people into trouble if blindly believed.

If you write software open or otherwise and someone is hurt or killed by it then in most of the world the disclaimer of warranty is meaningless. Likewise giving it away for free isn’t a magic defence. The product maker would almost certainly be the one who actually got hit but not always.

Secondly negligence is usually defined in terms of current good practice. If you did all your design and testing right and it still broke it’s probably ok this time. However anyone not implementing learning from that incident in future product…

Also the BSD disclaimer is in capitals because in some places that is a legal requirement for a valid disclaimer. Beware of such things when writing your own. . Or better yet use an existing one

Michael K Johnson February 02, 2018 06:55

+Alan Cox Yeah, Bunnie has clarified (AAUI) that he’s asking “would you accept this?” rather than making a specific proposal. Just made me think…

Behan Webster February 02, 2018 10:14

Of course the reality is that there are an awful lot of things in this world which are essentially a 2-slot toaster with one slot disabled. It’s just really well hidden. For instance, most cheap monitors are in fact factory seconds in cheap plastics hiding the fact that some of the ports don’t work. And I’m sure everyone here knows how CPUs and memory chips are sorted into speed classes in order to hide defects, and parts of the chips disabled to make what would have been a higher end cpu into a lower end one for yield reasons. This is manufacturing 101: you figure out how to make money from your otherwise defective products. Duh. Hell, apples which aren’t good enough to sell in stores are made into apple juice. This is the way the world works.

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