Experimental software should not be deadly
A few days ago, Apple released a beta version of their Safari web browser for Microsoft Windows. Within hours, hackers had found major security flaws and forced Apple to quickly release a fixed version.
The Apple apologists said, “that’s the risk of using beta software”.
I say there is no excuse for such a serious flaw. If the security flaws are so great that hackers discover them in a matter of hours, then Apple has not properly designed and tested the software.
Consider the following analogy. Suppose I invent a new recipe and cook it for some guests. If the recipe is a failure, the food might be inedible. But if I serve spoiled food that makes my guests sick, I cannot simply blame the experimental recipe.
Medicine starts by teaching, “Do no harm”. That’s a good rule for computers, too.