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Sender: "Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)" <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 2001 12:56:38 -0500
Reply-To: Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>
From: Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>
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In-Reply-To: <[log in to unmask]> from "W. Wesley Groleau x4923" at Feb 14, 2001 12:27:49 PM
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[said Wes]
>
> Mike Feldman points out that folks don't care about validation because
> lack of it doesn't cost them anything.  The same could be said about
> software quality.
>
> And lack of quality doesn't cost anything (not much anyway) because
> several vendors (with Microsoft way out in the lead) have brainwashed
> the masses into EXPECTING garbage off the shelf.
>
> --
> Wes Groleau
> http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~wgroleau
>
I think most people wouldn't have a clue what quality meant in situations
like this. We techies have managed to bury the public in buzzwords, and
also to spin them around between the two myths:

- the computer can do anything

- the computer can't do anything at all unless you are willing
  to pay dearly

Always has been this way, still is. It's true that Microsoft contributes
heavily to this, but they surely did not invent it.

Consider all the ramifications of the "I Love You" virus, and also of
the endless Y2k discussions. How would a lay person really understand
what was really going on?

I heard an interesting panel discussion on the radio yesterday about
possible brain damage from cellphone radiation. The point was made
_very clearly_ that the telecom industry is one of the most profitable
in history, and the regulatory structure is (in all countries) very
weak. The industry's objective is to make the phones ever cheaper
and lighter (hence no decent RF shielding inside) and they've managed
to keep the governments (here and elsewhere) off their case about it.

Without getting into a long thread on cellphones per se, I just wanted to
point out that it is _not_ just the software industry that lacks good
validation/certification standards.

BTW - this is the local DC NPR station, and this show has unusually well-
informed panels and listeners. One of the callers to this show asked
whether there is danger in eating food that's been heated in a microwave
even. How on _earth_ can the tech industry ever learn how to speak clearly
to the public?

Mike

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