[nycbug-talk] interesting read

Isaac Levy ike
Sat May 21 15:41:34 EDT 2005

The pacemaker scenario, (hopefully the final word on this thought),

On May 21, 2005, at 3:28 PM, Dru wrote:

> On Sat, 21 May 2005 alex at pilosoft.com wrote:
>>> Let's keep in mind that the trustworthiness of a life-critical
>>> application has everything to do with how that program was written 
>>> and
>>> absolutely nothing to do with the license under which it was 
>>> released.
>> Okay. Back to original question. What is the benefit for you to be 
>> able to
>> recompile source code for your pacemaker?
> That's Ike's grandfather, not mine ;-)

Well, it's extremely unlikely my grandfather would care about 
recompiling the source code by himself, but he sure would want his 
chosen/given doctors to have the control available to them.

As I stated earlier,

> With that, the pacemakers he's had have failed over the years with 
> fairly traumatic results- and I've gotten to see the doctors trying to 
> mitigate the vendor game, which we all know and hate in our own world.

Perhaps the words don't speak clearly enough, but I think that's an 
example of how sick and twisted the world can be at times, (a sentiment 
mitigated by the fact that he IS alive, and 'ticking').

If I had a pacemaker, I'd see it like this:
It's my body, so I see it as a human right that I have the source code 
to my own pacemaker, and that my life not be in the hands of a single 
patent holder or vendor.

Practically speaking, if I or my doctors were to have problems with a 
particular vendor for said pacemaker, I could take the source code and 
tech involved to whomever could continue to support it.  That would be 
the benefit of having the ability to recompile the source code for my 


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