No plane/no gain 
Author Message
 No plane/no gain

In comp.object recently, there was an argument over the relative safety
of static typing vs. dynamic typing.  I asserted that in other fields of
engineering, a 10% improvement in safety would always be accepted.

Looks like I was wrong.


Quote:

>>I keep hearing the intriguing assertion that "small planes aren't
>>made in the US anymore because the threat of product liability
>>lawsuits has driven the manufacturers out of business."
>----------
>On a related note, liability also is supposed to be the reason why
>manufactorers do not improve airplane safety items. If you improve
>something to make it better then that may be presented to a jury
>as proof that there was a known problem with the design. If there
>was a better way to do it and you knew about it then anyone who
>had an accident with the old system could sue you.

And come to think of it, this is also the reason why Ontario Hydro requires
electrical fixtures that are installed in houses with copper wiring to be
connected in a deliberately sub-optimal manner.  The wires must be pushed
straight in to the socket/switch/whatever, and then the screws tightened.
The head of the{*filter*}then has the wire underneath it on one side, but not
on the other side.  This causes the head of the{*filter*}to bend over a little
bit, making the connection inferior and unreliable.  In Ontario, it is
forbidden to wrap a copper wire around the{*filter*}before tightening the screw.

However, in houses with aluminum wiring, the wires should still be wrapped
around the screws, as any competent electrician would normally do.

The result is that the ratio of fires caused by electrical wiring in houses
with copper wires is more in proportion to those with aluminum wires, and
Ontario Hydro does not have to admit that aluminum wires were a mistake.

OK, mea culpa.  I was wrong.  In other fields of engineering, a 10%
improvement in safety is rejected, because it could lead to lawsuits.

I must recommend that type-checking be omitted from all further software,
whether statically or dynamically typed.

(I wish I could put a :-S sarcasm "tag" on that, but it seems to be more
true than sarcastic.  A smiley "tag" would be wholly inappropriate.)

Follow-ups are directed back to alt.folklore.urban.  Change it if appropriate.

DISCLAIMER:  This posting does not represent my employer's opinions.
--

If this were the company's opinion, I wouldn't be allowed to post it.
Permission is granted to feel this signature, but not to look at it.



Tue, 02 Nov 1993 10:48:58 GMT  
 
 [ 1 post ] 

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