should I use Google Chrome?

I just got this email from Google:

It’s finally here: Google Chrome for Mac. Available today in beta!

Hi there,

Thanks for signing up to hear from us regarding Google Chrome for Mac! We’re excited to let you know that Google Chrome is now available in beta for Mac OS X.

Here are a few fun facts from us on the Google Chrome for Mac team:

  • 73,804 lines of Mac-specific code written
  • 29 developer builds
  • 1,177 Mac-specific bugs fixed
  • 12 external committers and bug editors to the Google Chrome for Mac code base, 48 external code contributors
  • 64 Mac Minis doing continuous builds and tests
  • 8,760 cups of soft drinks and coffee consumed
  • 4,380 frosted mini-wheats eaten

Thanks for waiting and we hope you’ll give Google Chrome for Mac a whirl.

Google Chrome Team
www.google.com/chrome

I’m glad that Chrome for Mac is finally available, even if it’s just a beta.  Of course, what software by Google isn’t “beta” anyhow?

But I’m even more concerned, as a software quality professional, by the numbers they posted.  They say they only wrote 73,804 lines of code and fixed 1177 bugs.  In the QA field, there’s a measurement we use to gauge the quality of source code for a product, and we call it “defect density.”  In short, it’s the number of bugs per thousand lines of source code.

Good software has a low defect density, and bad software has a high defect density.  Typically you see numbers in the range of 0.1 to 1.0 bugs per thousand lines of code.  One study of several open source software applications showed an average of 0.3.  But judging from Google’s own numbers, their Mac code has a defect density of 15.9.  That’s a higher defect density than I think I’ve ever measured at any company I’ve worked for.

So now I’m wondering if I really want to download and install Google Chrome for Mac.  With a defect density this bad, is it going to crash at every turn?  What’s your opinion?

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