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Re: lynx-dev Re: Licensing Lynx (fwd)

From: Martin McCormick
Subject: Re: lynx-dev Re: Licensing Lynx (fwd)
Date: Wed, 29 Sep 1999 16:06:15 -0500

Brett Glass writes:
>We would hope that our code would be good enough that it would require
>little or no support.

        That's a tall order.  All of us who have written code hope it
is the best, most efficient, and most robust instructions ever written
and people in the year 10000 will do a quick check to see if it is
Y10K compliant and, of course, discover that it is, and that it has
never been known to have caused anybody any problem in the last 8,000

        In reality, this is an impossible goal although a noble one.
As one of the community of computer users who happens to be blind and
who has noticed the seemingly endless problems caused by software
which uses a GUI and which does not make allowances for any other
alternative method for accessing the application, I can assure you
that "I never thought of that." is almost the mantra of the commercial
software industry.

        Whether or not a person who is blind may or may not need to
use a piece of software is not my point.  That's a topic for another
place and time, but my point is that it is easy for smart people to
get things wrong and never know it until the shrink-wrap is on and the
customers start buying.

        I have experienced far less trouble with publicly-available
software than I have with fully commercial products because the open
material has to conform to fairly strict standards if it hopes to
work.  My experience with commercial products is that you're just
stuck with this useless thing that doesn't work and that's just tough.

        I am saying that one can't possibly think of everything that can
go wrong and to believe that one can is the hight of arrogance.

Martin McCormick WB5AGZ  Stillwater, OK 
OSU Center for Computing and Information Services Data Communications Group

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