Subject: Re: prohibiting use that would result in death or personal injury
From: "Derek J. Balling" <>
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2000 10:38:05 -0700

At 11:46 AM -0700 7/23/00, Rick Moen wrote:
>begin Derek J. Balling quotation:
>>  No, I was just addressing the comment of "well, the disclaimer clause
>>  is enough and it just requires judges ruling the correct way"
>>  (paraphrased), to which I was indicating that what you and I consider
>>  "correct" may not match the legal statutes of some jurisdictions
>>  (where the disclaimer clause may specifically NOT be worth anything in
>>  terms of removing liability).
>You're missing all of one point I made, and most of the other:
>(1) I was saying that listing specific proscribed roles for the software
>is futile, since you cannot even begin to cover the territory of
>situations where its defects can be claimed to cause loss.  (2) In light
>of which, the author's main protection is probably his reasonable hope
>that judges will observe the economic substance of the situation plus
>the up-front, unconcealed intent to have no warranty, and decide that
>imputing liability would be inequitable.
>This has nothing to do with particular jurisdictions, rendering your
>objections off-point.

No, Rick, you're missing the point,... maybe in point 2, you're 
resting the safety of the necks of open source programmers on the 
"trust" that the judges will do the right thing, which (lately) it is 
clearly evident that they DON'T do.

I'm not, as a programmer working for nobody and for free, going to 
write code, allow it be used by some guy who's monitoring pacemakers 
or something, and then have someone hit me with some 
contributory-manslaughter charge because of negligent coding 
practice, "hoping" that the court will like my disclaimer.

You're saying "Trust The Courts", when the evidence is stacked 
AGAINST trusting the courts in some cases, and in others the law says 
explicitly that you CANNOT trust the courts.

Your argument is moot.