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Subject: RE: mp3 cutting and pasting
From: Gajdos_at_metatem.net
Date: 2004-08-09


On Mon, 9 Aug 2004 at 08:12, Fred Maxwell wrote:

> As to your "control" issues, you have no less control over what a closed
> source program does than you do for an open source program.

Wrong. When the source code is available, anyone can choose to examine
it, and some people actually do, so the chance that some intentional nasty
effects are caused by running the program are smaller than for a program
for which the source is not available.

> You click buttons, check boxes, type on the keyboard, or pass in command
> line arguments. That's how you control the program.

To "have control over what a program does" and "to control a program" are
two very different aspects of the word "control".

> Before you answer, think about this: OpenOffice.org consists of
> approximately 9 million lines of source code and 30,000 files. Are you
> going to honestly tell me that you read all of that source code prior to
> running it on your computer? Did you read, and understand, the over 30
> million lines that comprise Linux (http://librenix.com/?inode=1026) prior to
> installing and running it? Did you read the ~2 million lines of source that
> make up Mozilla before you ran it? If not, then you had no "control" over
> what that software was doing on your computer. You might have been able to
> figure out what it had done, had something gone awry, but that's closing the
> barn doors after the horses get out.

OK, so I thought about it:
When the source is freely available, more than one person can see what the
program actually does, not just what the person who wrote it says it does.
If someone wants to do harm, they will probably not publish the source
code, so that anyone can see what they are up to - even before running the
program. Nothing wrong with that.

Time to examine some more code,
/JG
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