(Topic ID: 193652)

Call to Action Demand Open source code from all pinball manufacturers


By TechnicalSteam

2 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 93 posts
  • 44 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by herg
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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    #9 2 years ago
    Quoted from clg:

    The issue is the electrical components. What if bad code locks something on. Best case bad fuse worst case a fire.

    What you're talking about is basically a specialized case of product liability, where the product is software. In the product liability space, negligence is used for design defects on the theory that greater care in design would have prevented the problem. Manufacturing defects are evaluated according strict liability, because they happen no matter how careful a manufacturer is, and making the manufacturer liable spreads the cost of defects. If a software defect gets someone hurt or destroys property, there could be tort liability—but there's probably that already.

    #21 2 years ago
    Quoted from zacaj:

    In the end though, this is a niche market

    Yes, and Pinside is a niche of a niche...and folks who really care about accessing source code is an even smaller niche of a niche. Most people that buy games probably don't even care or know enough to even get into the adjustments menus on their machines. I only change defaults to free play and 5 ball play. That's about it.

    #25 2 years ago
    Quoted from epthegeek:

    I was with you, right up to that point.
    /5 balls is cheating

    5 ball play is what we grew up with, young fella...but I digress.

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    #91 2 years ago
    Quoted from hocuslocus:

    I'm sure JJP, Stern and others don't want to be liable for others incompetence when game code could essentially cause major malfunctions.

    Malfunctions are probably the least of their worries. I assume they could disclaimer of warranty/liability/merchantability out of that ("hey, you signed on for open source to run our hardware - not our problem") But then you have other legal issues to consider:

    Unlike software that is created in-house, “open-source code comes from an amorphous community of unknown people, and parts of it are much more likely than homegrown software to have been copied from someone’s proprietary code,” writes Scott Wilson.
    Open-source codes also can't guarantee that it doesn’t infringe on some third party’s intellectual-property rights — and there's no legal protection if is does. In other words, your business would have to fend for itself if it were sued for patent, copyright, or trade-secret infringement over code. My company had this problem and it nearly destroyed us. Someone went and put in what they thought would help our company and users. Turns out that was intellectual property of someone else. Six months later, we received a court notice.

    How Open Source Nearly Killed My Business
    By John Rampton

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