[Wolves] A hot potato subject.

Andy Wootton andy.wootton at wyrley.demon.co.uk
Sat Dec 18 00:46:53 GMT 2004

On Fri, 17 Dec 2004, Kevanf1 wrote:

>> But is there a real life version?
>> Some mission critical computer system crashing and people being hurt
>> or killed because of it.
I think it would be very difficult to lay the blame for any such 
incident on a general purpose operating system. It would be the 
responsibility of the person who had taken the decision to use 
innappropriate software for a mission critical system. If someone's life 
is relying on software then you want the system to be as simple as 
possible and mathematically proven.

This is born out if you ever try to take out professional liability 
insurance for providng software services. The premiums go through the 
roof if there is perceived to be any real-time or safety-critical 
component. I once contracted in the nuclear industry. My agency removed 
their contractual requirement for me to take out insurance when I 
explained that I would need a considerable increase in my normal rate to 
pay for the premiums.


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