[OT?] Source code

Lulu of the Lotus-Eaters mertz at gnosis.cx
Tue Sep 17 02:42:17 CEST 2002


Lulu of the Lotus-Eaters wrote:
> I would reformulate the issue slightly:  If you BELIEVE your code is
> that valuable, seek psychiatric help.

BT (or a billion other folks with the same neurosis) retorted:
|> I really don't understand posts like these.
|> You think I'm fool to protect my work?

Cliff Wells <LogiplexSoftware at earthlink.net> wrote previously:
|Obscuring the code will dissuade only the most casual or incompetent
|from decompiling/disassembling your code.  Sort of like hiding a spare
|key to your house under the "Welcome" mat.  And that would be illegal,
|hence the suggestion to *copyright* your work.

>From a factual perspective, Cliff is right.  Copyright is the means by
which source code can be protected (not that I think copyright laws are
good ones, but that's how things actually are).  Obscurity isn't.

But even though my prior remark was mostly meant as a little quip, there
was more to it than just that.  There is a particular neurosis that goes
into the many grammatically flawed, defensive, and self-aggrandizing
posts that one sees so frequently on Usenet.  The obsession with
protecting code that has not yet been written, but whose greatness is
nonetheless certain is just one variant--various other "secrets" and
"insights" work the same way.  I exaggerate by saying "see psychiatric
help"--the neurosis is usually not quite as severe as to require that.
But at the risk of being too vulgarly Freudian, it seems like an anal
retentive obsessive complex that is going on with this phobic fear of
parting with something so very precious.

Yours, Lulu...

P.S. Horkheimer and Adorno say societies can have neuroses too, not
just individuals.  Just look at the RIAA, DVDCCA, Disney (&the Senator
from Disney), MS, and so on.

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