Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 9th Nov 2010 22:24 UTC, submitted by koki
GNU, GPL, Open Source Now this is interesting. We see what is at its core a very valid concern, in practice not a problem to anyone, and, thanks to the tone of the press release, close to trolling. The Free Software Foundation Latin America is complaining about something that has been known for a while - there is some non-Free code stuck in the Linux kernel (mostly firmware). A valid issue of concern from an idealogical viewpoint, but sadly, the tone of the press release turns this valid concern into something close to trolling.
Thread beginning with comment 449476
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE: Not again... - flash chips
by jabbotts on Wed 10th Nov 2010 18:54 UTC in reply to "Not again..."
jabbotts
Member since:
2007-09-06

Updating a firmware through a wizard is no more complex than installing an updated driver or app. Flash memory is also cheap; they should put the firmware in flash memory. Firmware can still be updated and does not have to exist within the driver bundle. Driver's return to being a basic bridge between kernel and hardware interface.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Not again... - flash chips
by fewt on Wed 10th Nov 2010 18:59 in reply to "RE: Not again... - flash chips"
fewt Member since:
2010-06-09

Updating a firmware through a wizard is no more complex than installing an updated driver or app. Flash memory is also cheap; they should put the firmware in flash memory. Firmware can still be updated and does not have to exist within the driver bundle. Driver's return to being a basic bridge between kernel and hardware interface.


Drivers stopped being separate from the firmware with the release of the first winmodem back around 1994. Note that is *16* years ago. I don't think you can make the case that it should be changed when it has been a functional, and accepted method of delivery for 16 years.

Reply Parent Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Yes, the Winmodem has been the posterchild for shit developed hardware. I'd suggest it as evidence that the driver+firmware is a consumer hostile and limiting design. Granted, my first introduction was about 16 years ago when helping a friend setup a BBs; "WTF.. where are the jumpers? How do I tell this where Dos+Renegade is going to talk to it?"

Mind you, my introduction to Winmodems was through there limitations rather than any benefit the design offered. Maybe a poor first impression but 16 years of experience since seems to confirm my sentiments.

But, even with 16 years of Winmodem.. there is no reason they can't go back to separate firmware and driver. Especially with flash chips available and dropping in price. If your harware uses firmware, give me a damned update utility that flashes it to the hardware and later flashes updated firmware images as needed. Stop artificially limiting my hardware choices with BS like driver bundled firmware and support for only one OS.

Actually, I don't really see a reason why more hardware can't function like hard drives. Somehow hard drive manufacturers manage to compete though they've all agreed on a standard hardware interface that any OS can implement.

Reply Parent Score: 2