[kwlug-disc] given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow?

Chris Frey cdfrey at foursquare.net
Fri Jan 8 04:45:37 EST 2010


On Fri, Jan 08, 2010 at 02:52:22AM -0500, Robert P. J. Day wrote:
>   any other thoughts?  i've always liked the idea of "given enough
> eyeballs, all bugs are shallow," but i don't think it can stand by
> itself.  i think the defense of OSS as being more secure needs more
> explicit points as to *why* it should be inherently more secure.

I think the maxim applies to both open and closed software.  The
main benefit that FLOSS has is that the eyeballs can see more of the
problem, and therefore it multiplies the usefulness of the work.

But it works for closed source too.  There are untold hundreds of blog
posts and forum posts of poor end users figuring out workarounds for
their game systems or Microsoft Windows systems or driver problems or
virus issues.

If you have a software problem, which platform would you rather use
your eyeballs on?  Open or Closed?

But just because something is available doesn't mean it will be looked at.
Not everyone reads The Art of Computer Programming, but most consider
it a great work.  Same for FLOSS source code, in my opinion.

- Chris




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