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In Search of Perfect Software

By gsquared ·
I have seen, a million times if not more, all the complaints about how MS releases software with bugs in it.

People ask, "Are we all beta testers for MS?" and similar questions.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but I would like a list of all of the perfect software out there. It seems to me that Microsoft is being held to a standard in these discussions that nothing on this planet can live up to.

So, all you MS bashers/haters out there, give me a list of the software you've built/used/read about in the National Enquirer/whatever, which is perfect.

And, since it will almost certainly be brought up:

No, I'm not paid by MS.
No, I'm not paid by anyone who is paid by MS.
No, I'm not totally serious on this, but I am somewhat serious.
Yes, my parents were married when I was conceived and born; they were not blood-relatives; they were both human
Yes, I have a complete brain, unaltered by surgery or psychotropics

Other insults will be considered as they come up. (Such are inevitable when saying something that could be construed as, if not pro-MS, then at least not anti-MS.) :)

So, FLAME ON!

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No flame here

by Tig2 In reply to In Search of Perfect Soft ...

Just an observation or two.

I have never written perfect code. I have never written a flawless project plan. I DO learn from my mistakes.

In my opinion, the reason that Microsoft gets bashed is two-fold. The first is frustration. Anyone who has had to lobotomise their OS has felt it. I can be working away and have MS try to do things I don't want it to do. And I can't turn that off. I don't want to constantly update my Windows if I can find a smaller and equally functional patch that will cover the problem and not install WGA on my (legal) computer. I don't want anything going through the firewall that I can't see and don't control. I would love to see MS come out with "Windows for people who know what they are doing"

The second element of frustration is that I can't kill IE. I want to use the browser of my choice, not be forced into the IE or else corner. When IE was first integrated, you could remove it completely (as long as you speak registry sufficiently) with not much trouble and install your preference.

There is no perfect software. There is stable software. Releasing an OS with major flaws shouldn't happen but does. I think that the company creating the software should do UAT and not expect that their end users will do that. Many users are not like us- they want to be able to use a dependable piece of software.

My personal preference is Unix. I like a command line that commands. That functionality has been lost to an extent in Windows. But that doesn't mean that I don't use Windows or feel a need to arbitrarily bash it.

Hope you don't get flamed- it would be nice to see a discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of all of the alternatives.

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"Hello World"

by rosem In reply to No flame here

That is the only program that I know that 90% of people who have written any code have made perfectly (you know the program that the only thing it does is enter out "Hello World" onto the screen). I have yet to find a piece of software that is not problematic or unattractive in use in some shape or form.

I would have to agree that it would be better to post on what products do well instead of which ones are the 'Miracle' software. I don't that was the intend of the post since I think you are one of those people out there that thinks Microsoft is doing a decent job of creating software and dislike everyone who is only onesided with the software that they like.

Personally I like Microsoft Products since XP is more dumby proof that other operating systems for the uneducated / inexperienced user (yes even Linux since it has problems keeping up with the latest equipments / gadgets drivers).

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for the full brained person

by w2ktechman In reply to In Search of Perfect Soft ...

It is nice to see that you are not mindlessly flowing through everything. Questions are good and can show a different view.
Personally, 5 think that it is not about flawed code altogether, its not learning from mistakes of the past as well.
I am not a programmer, but I realize that no code is perfect. I think the real problem lies in that MS is quick to send out code full of security holes that are already known about.
Also, that they can patch an OS, and the same flaw can be found in later releases as well. Which suggests that they do not communicate well between their OS developers.
So, I dont think that it is a problem with having some bad code, it is a problem with code that should have been fixed, but was ignored.

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First find a perfect software vendor

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to In Search of Perfect Soft ...

Nope none of them either.

Are you having a laugh?

If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck and smells like a duck as soon as I take it out of the shrink warpped box, it's going to be a duck, isn't it?

I have no desire to insult you, please refrain from insulting me with this spurious argument.
Next you'll be saying windows doesn't have to be secure because no softare can be secure. That's not a software design principle, but a business one.

It's not MS's lack of quality that gets them bashed, it's the fact their market dominance means they don't have to give a brown one about it that does.

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Good Enough

by gsquared In reply to First find a perfect soft ...

On the "next you'll say ..." part, nope. The OS needs to be secure while retaining both functionality and ergonomics (user-friendliness, etc.).

My point was not that Windows doesn't have to be perfect. My point is that I think MS gets some unfair bashing.

I don't have a problem with someone pointing out a security flaw in a program with the intention of getting that flaw fixed. (There are caveats on that - publishing a flaw openly before the developers have had a reasonable chance to fix it is unethical.)

I don't have a problem with someone pointing out a security flaw in a program with the intention of helping someone avoid that security problem, even if the problem isn't being fixed. (Actually, especially if the problem isn't being fixed.) That's helpful. It's just like I'll tell people I refuse to do business with Fry's Electronics, because of all the flawed hardware they've dumped on the market and some bad experiences I've had with them. Same deal.

What I do have a problem with is general ranting and raving about how horrible MS is, while setting an unattainable standard for them (or anyone else). I'd have the same problem if it were directed at anyone else, not just MS.

As far as MS not caring about product quality, I don't see that. In my opinion, Windows XP is at least moderately better than DOS 3.0, and I've used both extensively. (To be fully accurate, I think Windows XP was a significant improvement over everything they released prior to it.) A company that doesn't care about quality at all wouldn't continually try to improve their product.

Of course, their emphasis is on user-features and ergonomics. That's because that's what actually sells software (or anything else for that matter).

Which do you think would sell better to the general public:

A cruise aboard a nearly unsinkable battleship with military MREs (prepackaged "Meals, Ready-to-Eat"), no deck chairs, no swimming pool, but you are as safe as you can possibly be aboard a boat at sea.

A cruise aboard a modern luxury liner with 5-star meals, 5-star accomodations and stops in so many tropical islands that you can't keep track of them all. You're only as safe as the captain and pilot haven't had too much champaign at the deck parties, and you don't drink any of the local water, and the other passengers don't make off with your cell phone and laptop, etc.

Which do you really think will sell more cruises?

On that analogy, Windows needs to be safe enough to pass government safety standards (enough lifeboats, shipboard doctors with penicillin on hand, etc.), but needs to have as many features, including pointless flash, as possible.

Even the "pointless flash" fits the analogy. Transparent windows are necessary? Hardly. But then, fireworks displays aren't "necessary" either, but they do draw more of a crowd now don't they?

So, I think MS is trying to be the luxury liner, not the nearly unsinkable battleship.

On the other hand, maybe in the business world the battleship is more appropriate, and the liner should stick with personal/entertainment venues (home computing).

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Luxury liners

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Good Enough

Ones been back to port for the second time (hmm Vista analogy). It poisoned all the passengers again !. They are sterilising it now.

Bashers exist on both sides of the fence. I've used both OS's (and several more), window's only strong suits are approachability and it's proprietry standard.

You can tout it's 'features 'til you go green, I did 20 years in 24/7 manufacturing, windows just doesn't cut it in environments like that precisely because of it's strengths and the lengths MS have gone to to stay in front on those two curves.

The transport I require is the one that get's me to B in one go without having my stomach pumped.

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Everyone knows you don't get perfect software

by Deadly Ernest In reply to In Search of Perfect Soft ...

what they object to with MS Windows is a number of other items:

1. A flaw noted in one version is patched in that version, but is not fixed in the core software and reappears in the next version, ad infinitum. Fixing known problems is a basic with anything.

2. MS add in features but do not supply ways for users to turn them off or remove them if they find them annoying, which many are. Being able to turn things on and off is a basic on anything.

3. When you buy and install software you have no problems with having to authenticate or activate it upon installation. People get pissed when they have to do that because they changed their hardware or because MS loaded spyware on to their system (yes WGA is spyware) and its chewing up their bandwidth.

4. For over 10 years we have had MS tell us how great, perfect and secure their software is. The reality is that they lied their heads off. People get pissed when they are lied to.

In essence it is the approach that MS use that **** people off. I'e been using MS software for about 18 years, no more. It used to be good, but it took a major change in design directives in 1994/95 and has gotten steadily worse since then.

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Windows got to love it

by dayen In reply to Everyone knows you don't ...

I wrote code back in the DOS days basic and pascl for robots did I ever write perfect code YES perfectly bad worte a program once lost everything on the HDD I tack my hat off to the Guys an girls who can write code that run day after day even if it breaks once in awhile but can fix it self or they support it think of how big the OS is today and how small DOS 2.0 was back then that this even works is wonderfull also I don't have to write printer driver for each app anymore I love that (I hate WGA I call it crapware and bloatware use not just bandwith but MEM too just so you know My vote with Deadly Enest)

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