A bad day for “open” fanbois

In software:

Public urged to reset all passwords – due to the critical two-year old flaw in OpenSSL.

One of the many unsubstantiated claims surrounding open source approaches to software development is that they are inherently less prone to errors than closed source development because there are more eyes able to inspect the underlying code. It’s an irrational claim, as it’s not the number of eyes that matter, but the quality of the brain(s) behind them and whether they’re looking in the first place. It’s not the case that any particular software business model has a monopoly on talent, so it has never been a credible claim that open source is somehow likely to be better in this respect.

In education:

Nothing like as serious as the OpenSSL flaw of course,  but it’s rather amusing that a venture set up to promote learning and understanding ends up adding to the myth that this is definitely something that Einstein said or wrote. A quick trawl through the various (paid for) Oxford Dictionaries of Quotations turns up a blank and in a reassuring fightback for the “open” camp, Wikiquotes notes that this is one of many sayings (mis)attributed to the physicist without a contemporaneous source.

Posts Tagged with…

Your thoughts?