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Would A Kickstarter Open-Source GPU Work?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by timothyja View Post
    Um, you realise you need to start somewhere right? If an open gpu is successfull a cpu could surely follow. GNU\Linux started of as the GNU open source tools in the 80's followed up with the Linux kernel in the 90's.
    Yes, but software is much easier to start from nowhere, has minimal investment is required if you have volunteer manpower.

    Hardware require money to actually large investment produce something that will actually recoup it cost has to be able to continue further development and/or take care of specific needs of a financial backer.

    Why do you think Open Compute Project work, it simply because Facebook finance the development of standard for their own need that were not fulfilled by any OEM, they just decided to be nice and make it open project was more beneficial for them, has other may bring innovation their own engineer didn't envision, has they have no intention of going into the OEM market.

    Also you not going to get anywhere developing a open sourced GPU architecture unless you have large amount of money available and a team of willing of experienced GPU engineers, has to compete with AMD, Nvidia or Matrox discrete solution, since system-on-a-chip GPU are good enough for most purpose these day.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by blackiwid View Post
      whats the point of having a real "opensource" or free driver with the microcode open, if you use it in a steam closedsource proprietary drm plattform with proprietary games?

      If you dont care about freedom with drm and complete closed software system why does microcode of a driver than matter? I mean the rest ok, because of portability but then you dont need the microcode.
      You have to start somewhere... The more companies making successful business models around open source, the more companies should follow. While a number of business' in the past have made a killing out of their closed source, hardware / software, it seems in at least some cases that the model is unsustainable. Especially as more open technologies become competitive. It'll take a few open source games to become popular, have good graphics, sound and the like. But unfortunately it's likely to be the entertainment industry that takes the longest to adopt.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by iniudan View Post
        Yes, but software is much easier to start from nowhere, has minimal investment is required if you have volunteer manpower.

        Hardware require money to actually large investment produce something that will actually recoup it cost has to be able to continue further development and/or take care of specific needs of a financial backer.

        Also you not going to get anywhere developing a open sourced GPU architecture unless you have large amount of money available and a team of willing of experienced GPU engineers, has to compete with AMD, Nvidia or Matrox discrete solution, since system-on-a-chip GPU are good enough for most purpose these day.
        From Michaels post: "Up to now the company has licensed their technology to various firms."

        So I would assume the company both already has a working product (not starting from nowhere) and already has its market figured out.

        Again I would back this out of interest rather than expecting to get a great gpu.

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        • #19
          As said by many, I also don't see much benefit in having a completely open source hardware that will never catch up to the closed ones. I would much rather have a company go to kickstarter with an open SoC project: Lincense the cores, Fab the chips, open the whole software stack. That would be pretty neat and it might be comercially viable since there is still something to be sold: the SoC itself. I can see many projects adopting such a SoC for its flexbility. AFAIK an ARM SoC costs around $50 million to develop. Might not be completely out of reach of kickstarter.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by LinX View Post
            I think that would be enough as a start. I hope I'm bot being too ambitious.
            Basically, what you're saying is that it needs to be competitive in all respects with contemporary hardware, which NVidia and Intel and AMD have spent many years and many millions of dollars developing. And I'd agree - for all that open source is a good thing, the result has to actually be useful in order for people to use it, and even more so if you want them to pay money for it. And if you produce something that costs a fortune, devours energy, and delivers performance comparable to first-generation Intel graphics - well, why bother?

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            • #21
              Originally posted by timothyja View Post
              Um, you realise you need to start somewhere right? If an open gpu is successfull a cpu could surely follow. GNU\Linux started of as the GNU open source tools in the 80's followed up with the Linux kernel in the 90's.
              You do know that developing the CPU first would be a much better idea, has then you can develop a system-on-a-chip, from which you can start working on specialist solution for if prove popular enough to warrant further development then the SOC itself.

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              • #22
                A fully open source FPGA video card which can be used to do some real world tasks? That would be amazing, unfortunately I fear you will not reach the funding you need.
                ## VGA ##
                AMD: X1950XTX, HD3870, HD5870
                Intel: GMA45, HD3000 (Core i5 2500K)

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                • #23
                  It's _open_ hardware.

                  I'm really surprised that you guys don't feel like supporting an open hardware project. Open hardware, in general, is in it's infancy; it needs support. Good things can come out of it, just like with (free) open-source software.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by iniudan View Post
                    You do know that developing the CPU first would be a much better idea, has then you can develop a system-on-a-chip, from which you can start working on specialist solution for if prove popular enough to warrant further development then the SOC itself.
                    Maybe if you are starting from scratch but again it apears the company already has a product on which they want to expand.

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                    • #25
                      If I worked at a bank, and a team of seasoned computer hardware engineers and software developers, all came by to ask for a loan to make a discrete GPU, even willing to stake their houses on the projects, I'd say flat out "No".
                      It's a saturated and stagnated market. Maybe even shrinking... Besides, there's massive cpu parallelism just around the corner, no?

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                      • #26
                        Anything that might upset the duopoly sounds gr8 to me

                        The performance increments in graphics cards have pretty much been at a standstill IMHO for the last several years.

                        AMD and NVIDIA also seem to be colluding to set prices, too; at least that what the charts over at Tom's hardware seem to be saying to me.

                        So anything that might make the graphics market work like an actual market -- sounds awesome.

                        Given a decent OSS solution; I'll take it over proprietary stuff every time.

                        Color me sick of....
                        - constant "up-selling"
                        - price fixing
                        - teensy-tiny performance increments year-over-year
                        - no real innovation since the years of 3DFx, matrox, etc... i.e. back when 3d graphics was an actual market

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                        • #27
                          i will buy it as a educational tool (kernel module development, linux graphics stack, graphic hardware)

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by c117152 View Post
                            If I worked at a bank, and a team of seasoned computer hardware engineers and software developers, all came by to ask for a loan to make a discrete GPU, even willing to stake their houses on the projects, I'd say flat out "No".
                            It's a saturated and stagnated market. Maybe even shrinking... Besides, there's massive cpu parallelism just around the corner, no?
                            Well thats exactly why crowdfunding has become so successful. Banks, Game Publishers, etc have no interest in development of ideas or outside the box thinking to the point of ignoring anything other than what fits their preconcived notion of what will make them money. The success of Kickstarter is a testament to the idea that people are willing to support ideas traditional financers are not. So I guess you are saying they are taking the right approach by considering Kickstarter.

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                            • #29
                              I don't know if Kickstarter is popular enough to get the amount of money needed to develop a top end GPU. Not to mention that they would need an awesome team. I'm thinking at least several dozen million.

                              Can kickstarter scale that high?

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by duby229 View Post
                                I don't know if Kickstarter is popular enough to get the amount of money needed to develop a top end GPU. Not to mention that they would need an awesome team.
                                Well we really need more details on what they are aiming to do to make any worthwhile comments. However I would assume they would definatly not be aiming for a top end GPU.

                                Originally posted by duby229 View Post
                                I'm thinking at least several dozen million. Can kickstarter scale that high?
                                Sure it can take a look at the most successful projects page: http://www.kickstarter.com/discover/most-funded

                                Many projects have gone into the millions with some notable ones:
                                OUYA Console - $8,596,474
                                Pebble ewatch - $10,266,845

                                I wouldnt expect this project to reach such high numbers but I guess it depends on what they are going to offer. Probably the closest project I can think of to this one is the Parallella: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...r-for-everyone and that reached $898,921

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