EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

07.24.10

Deadly Proprietary Software

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Windows at 1:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Heart attack

Summary: New examples where Microsoft software helps the causing of many deaths and a word of warning about proprietary software at large, especially in sensitive applications like pacers

CONTACT WITH Microsoft tends to result in commercial deaths [1, 2, 3] even if one is a standards body. Microsoft also exploits deaths to advertise its products [1, 2], which sometimes cause death to actual people [1, 2]. Yesterday we wrote about the role of Microsoft Windows in the Deepwater Horizon disaster. The “BSOD” reference gave it all away and even IDG covered it from the same angle, not just Slashdot and some other sites that based their reporting on the federal hearing, usually citing the NYT (for the most part).

A computer that monitored drilling operations on the Deepwater Horizon had been freezing with a “blue screen of death” prior to the explosion that sank the oil rig last April, the chief electronics technician aboard testified Friday at a federal hearing.

“Blue screen of death,” or BSOD, is a term most often used to describe the display shown by Microsoft Windows after a serious crash that has incapacitated a PC.

This one case of blue screen of death may have cost the lives of millions of animals and harmed the health of several human generations to come, not to mention this planet, which is the only planet we have.

Coincidentally, the investigation done by Karen Sandler and a colleague of hers for several months now (Sandler has a heart condition) produced a long report from the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) (direct link given earlier). Glyn Moody writes about it now. It’s titled “Why Free Software is a Matter of Life and Death” and it starts as follows:

As regular readers of this blog will know, free software has an importance that extends way beyond the world of software. But for most people, it’s hard to understand why software freedom is really that important. So this new report “Killed by Code: Software Transparency in Implantable Medical Devices” from the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) provides a handy opportunity to get the message across:

Software is an integral component of a range of devices that perform critical, lifesaving functions and basic daily tasks. As patients grow more reliant on computerized devices, the dependability of software is a life-or-death issue. The need to address software vulnerability is especially pressing for Implantable Medical Devices (IMDs), which are commonly used by millions of patients to treat chronic heart conditions, epilepsy, diabetes, obesity, and even depression.

Secret code (or proprietary software) is a recipe for disaster that should be measurable not just in terms of financial damage; human toll too should start being taken into consideration. Proprietary software is usually all about money, not quality. It shows.

“Ballmer’s modus operandi for dealing with technical issues was to pound on the developers until they caved in to his own unrealistic expectations of what the ship date should be.”

Barbarians Led by Bill Gates, a book composed
by the daughter of Microsoft’s PR mogul

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Links 30/3/2015: Linux 4.0 RC6, OpenELEC 5.0.7

    Links for the day



  2. Techrights Cited by European Politicians in Support of EPO Staff's Causes

    Benoît Battistelli's right-hand man is charaterised as suspected of corruption in European Parliament questions



  3. When the EPO Came Under Fire From the Netherlands and Before Systemic Corruption Was Revealed

    Questions that targeted the Dutch Minister of Justice amidst EPO abuses against staff and a shameful failure to enforce a court's decision



  4. Links 29/3/2015: Red Hat's Stock Soars, Kodi 14.2 Released

    Links for the day



  5. Speculations That Microsoft is About to Buy Cyanogen (or at Least Officially Partner) to Attack Google's Android/Linux, Replacing Everything With Microsoft

    Articles in the corporate media and some analysis from smaller media sites serve to highlight the role which Microsoft plays in Cyanogen



  6. Links 28/3/2015: FoundationDB FOSS Shut Down by Apple, European Commission Support for Free Software

    Links for the day



  7. Microsoft Keeps Pretending to be 'Open Source', Despite Relentless Assaults on Open Source

    Microsoft's charm offensives against Free/libre software are proving to be rather effective, despite them involving a gross distortion of facts and exploitation of corruptible elements in the corporate media



  8. Željko Topić and Ivan Šimonović, Two Residues of Ivo Sanader's Corrupt Regime, Seen as Indirectly Connected

    Further exploration of the remnants of Sanader's highly notorious record and those whom he had brought to power before he landed in jail



  9. Links 27/3/2015: Ubuntu 15.04 Second Beta, Dart 1.9

    Links for the day



  10. The EPO's Dutch Scandal Leaves Battistelli and His Cronies on the Run

    EPO management is making concessions and issues statements which admit defeat, allowing the staff union to continue its activities



  11. Microsoft Won't Let People Wipe (Off) Windows But Happily Wipes Android, Wipes Android Apps Through Cyanogen and Blackmailed 'Partners'

    Microsoft's obscene double-standards leave Android and Linux between a rock and a hard place



  12. Links 26/3/2015: GNOME 3.16 Officially Released

    Links for the day



  13. Links 25/3/2015: India Moving to Free Software

    Links for the day



  14. Another Reason to Boycott UEFI: Back Doors or Crackers

    UEFI makes computers more prone to infections, according to some security experts



  15. The EPO's Administrative Council is Under Increased Pressure to Rein in and to Finally Stop Benoît Battistelli

    The EPO's Administrative Council (AC) is about to have a meeting, so the Member States' delegations are urged to call for action



  16. IRC Proceedings: February 22nd - March 21st, 2015

    Many IRC logs



  17. The Latest Microsoft Attacks on GNU/Linux and Free/Libre Software

    Microsoft is still hiding behind the façade of 'love' whilst actively attacking GNU/Linux and Free software from many directions



  18. Attempts to Disrupt Android by Pushing Microsoft Software Into It (Using Patent Blackmail and Cyanogen)

    Microsoft's Android coup d'état is succeeding owing to public apathy and poor comprehension of what Microsoft really is up to, partly due to media misdirection



  19. Links 24/3/2015: WebKitGTK+ 2.8.0, Black Lab Linux 6.5

    Links for the day



  20. Concerns Over Željko Topić's Alleged Powerful Links in Croatian Diplomacy

    Rikard Frgačić explains the powerful connections acquired though Ivan Šimonović, who is himself connected to EPO Vice-President Željko Topić



  21. Benoît Battistelli's EPO Comes Under Fire From Prominent Figures Who Are Key EPO Stakeholders, Expect Battistelli to Resign 'in the Longer Term'

    The ‘reign of terror’ which is primarily attributed to Battistelli and his cronies may be about to end; the Luxembourg parliament approves the Unified Patent Court



  22. Benoît Battistelli's EPO is Under Attack From French Politicians Yet Again

    More EPO interventions -- this time from France -- target Benoît Battistelli over his abuses and take it up to Eurocrats for political actions



  23. Bribes and Extortion Help Turn Android (Linux-powered) Into 'Microsoft Android'

    A strategy involving harassment and bribes drives large Android players into Microsoft's arms (PRISM and lock-in), much to Google's (and users') detriment and beyond regulators' range of visibility



  24. Microsoft-connected Black Duck Software Created by Microsoft Marketing Man as an Anti-GPL Operation, Admits the Management

    Black Duck "was founded [on] the idea ... to keep GPL-licensed code out of corporate codebases entirely," according to a new report



  25. Links 23/3/2015: Linux 4.0 RC5, Kubuntu Celebrates Ten Years

    Links for the day



  26. Microsoft Admits Lying (or Deceiving) About the Cost of Vista 10

    After much hype in the press about Windows being 'free' it turns out that Microsoft just lied yet again, leaving that lingering perception that Windows is as inexpensive as GNU/Linux



  27. Politics of Blackmail at the EPO

    Comments serve to highlight the role of bribes (or contrariwise blackmail), as allegedly exercised by the current management of the European Patent Office



  28. Benoît Battistelli's EPO Comes Under Attack From the British

    A British MEP criticises Battistelli and the management of the European Patent Office (EPO) while Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe, UK Minister for Intellectual Property, gets closer to Battistelli in a tactless effort to improve relations



  29. The Royal Norwegian Department of Labour on the Right of European Patent Office (EPO) Workers to Strike

    The role of bureaucrats from Norway in defending (or not) the rights of EPO workers -- rights that the EPO's management is actively trying to deny and punish for



  30. Michael Silver Back to Acting as Gartner's Microsoft Agent, Promoting Vista 10 Based on False Promises

    Vista 10 in the headlines as its marketing propaganda zones in on false perceptions around cost, aided in part by longtime foes of GNU/Linux such as Gartner, especially its Microsoft-embedded elements (Michael Silver and co-workers)


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts