Closed-spec hardware vendors (was: Re: Gnash - GNU Flash Player / John Gilmore)

Alfred M. Szmidt ams at
Tue Jan 3 23:31:39 UTC 2006

   How can "the GNU project, the FSF and FSFE" do more in the "not
   supporting [proprietary 3D hardware companies]" regard? AFAIK, none
   of them "support" those companies already. Is there something else
   "lacking"? If so, you haven't stated it.

I did state it, "nagging".  Help from people who distribute variants
of the GNU system would also help here.

   As for Linux, that's certainly a sore spot. Many kernel developers
   are happy dealing with the devil. Fortunately, there are also many
   like Greg Kroah-Hartman:

I'm trying to see what point Gre Kroah-Hartman is trying argue, he
seems to be on one hand arguing against a stable internal Linux driver
interface, but on the other hand, excluding non-free drivers from
Linux; which are already illegal (the only problem is enforcing the
copyright for Linux, which is more or less impossible).

Having a (maybe even just a partial) stable interface for drivers, is
immensly useful, only a small part of the actual driver might need
tweaking get it working ona different kernel, instead of a complete
rewrite which is usually what it takes when porting a driver to a
different platform.  It is also easy to make it impossible for
non-free drivers to abuse this for their own evil purposes, just GPL
it, and collect copyright assignment then serve papers to
companies/people who violate the GNU GPL license.

I think that (from a very brief reading of the URL's you posted,
thanks for that by the way) Greg Kroah-Hartman is trying to do a good
thing, but doing it in the wrong place.  Linux is after all not the
only free kernel out there...


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