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On Proper Disclosure of Trustworthiness

by merlyn (Sage)
on Sep 06, 2002 at 01:11 UTC ( #195550=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re: •Re: Perlmonks - democracy or oligarchy?
in thread Newbies, trying to help, and where to draw the line?

Suggesting such is like suggesting we should punish a good smaritan for failing to save somebody.
Been there. Done that.

if we are not up to your skill level, we should never answer a question?
Darn it. Why does everyone always drag this point into the extreme? Ludicrous. NO, I am not saying that. Let me answer by addressing your following question:
do people actually answer stuff knowing it is wrong?
I don't think so. But I bet a lot of people have a hunch it is wrong or untested, but in their arrogance, don't mark it as such.

That's all I'm asking, and I think that's reasonable.

If you don't know for a fact, with certainty, that your posted answer works from personal experience, please mark it as "untested" or "a guess" or "passed along without verification". When you mark your answer like that, I can determine to distrust the possible answer, not distrust you for either lying to me out of arrogance, or out of your own inability to determine your certainty of fact.

And you really don't want me or others distrusting you, right?

That's really all I'm saying. Don't read more into it than that. I'm just arguing for proper disclosure.

-- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker


Comment on On Proper Disclosure of Trustworthiness
Re: On Proper Disclosure of Trustworthiness
by theorbtwo (Prior) on Sep 06, 2002 at 04:21 UTC

    I don't know, Merlyn. I've seen a lot of cases where people have given answers, clearly without even completly reading the question, that were useful. You included. But you do have a point about disclosure... thus my new sig. You like? Think it covers enough?

    Shall I post it every time I answer somthing on the CB, too?


    Warning: Unless otherwise stated, code is untested. Do not use without understanding. Code is posted in the hopes it is useful, but without warranty. All copyrights are relinquished into the public domain unless otherwise stated. I am not an angel. I am capable of error, and err on a fairly regular basis. If I made a mistake, please let me know (such as by responing to this node).

Re: On Proper Disclosure of Trustworthiness
by Marza (Vicar) on Sep 06, 2002 at 07:17 UTC

    I read a little of your case when it happened. It really blows dude, but I was not surprised. They are ultra paranoid. Being an ex Internetworking Security guy for the Gov, I was brought in a few times to "smooth" some deals between companies a couple times. Have you seen all the sculpture work infront of their main building? Well they put that up after Oklahoma. They figured somebody was going to drive a bomb in their lobby. I would never work for them! I always got bad vibes from them. I have meet the real wacko "patriots" in our Goverment and yet the Intel people didn't seem "right" to me. Oh well old history.

    Darn it. Why does everyone always drag this point into the extreme? Ludicrous. NO, I am not saying that.

    Well it is your choice words. Broken is quite different then ineffective. I agree with you about broken code. But that should be weighed against the question. Is broken/pseudo code wrong when they are only asking for steps to doing something versus asking for code on doing something? However, I agree their should be a disclaimer if you are not sure. I do see it getting posted by the more experienced members. It does not happen all the time but a few do that.

    Now when you label stuff as ineffective, the arrogance factor goes up. Many here basically label all code they don't like or is written in a way they don't like as ineffective and thus start making claims that people shouldn't answer questions, etc.

    I have seen a noob ask for help and a beginner offer help. The beginners code is well not that great but it does the job. Some of the senior members blast the beginner for posting ineffective code. People forget that yes the code maybe childish for their skills but to the guy who wrote it? Well to him it was good. Now it should be said that the beginner should accept constructive critisim. There is no "perfect" code and you can always improve something.

    So as why people take the comment to the extreme? Well some of the senior people tend get rather Snobish about beginners and noobs. They don't like the time or "resources" wasted with stupid questions.

    In closing. I agree with the disclaimer concept but the senior members need to remember that some people do offer "ineffective" answers mainly because they think they are right.

    As I said before the posting of bad code can be good learning material as it get's explained why it is bad.

    Just my .02

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