2009-05-02

computer scientist trading card 2/32

Today we have an early hero of mine, Dawson Engler of MIT, Stanford and now Coverity. Professor Engler's magic/xgcc project was an awesome feat, one of the coolest tools I've ever seen (or at least, seen its output -- the project was never released, and presumably formed the base of Coverity's armamentarium), and served the open source community well with its discovery of flaws in the Linux kernel and other large code bases (the open source community, of course, helped out by correcting magic's many errors and assisting in its refinement).

Allegations that Coverity's "patented analysis" is actually a ruthlessly managed legion of teenage Ukranian programmers, raised on pure rainwater, grain alcohol, methamphetamines and steroid shakes in sweatshop conditions have been denied as "baseless conjecture and libel" by Coverity officials, but that's what you get for not opening your code.

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