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NVidia would never accept that. Either they let you use your knowledge you got from the inside and translate that to docs and then code or they wouldn't allow you to work on Nouveau at all.
I'm actually quite surprised they would be interested in Nouveau devs. This means they don't care that much about IP.
Actually, it makes PERFECT sense. If you're that good that you can make it work without any docs, imagine what you could do WITH docs. Further, if you are creating a RISK that you will cause loss of control over IP (i.e., reverse engineer DRM crap), then they may want to do something to shut you up from working further on that.
IMO, NVidia really screwed up with their lack of support for open source software. BECAUSE they didn't do what AMD is doing, their hardware is being reverse engineered, and they are at greater risk of loss of IP. AMD is involved in open source radeon development, at least PARTLY, to ensure that the SAFEST information is released to the public. They're controlling the process to protect IP that they don't want out. NVidia's great wall of China is causing their IP to get raped.
And it's still not clear what exactly they want from the Nouveau people
Are you serious?
Talented programmers with a proven track record, whose code you can examine, and who have good knowledge of programming Nvidia hardware. Of course Nvidia wants to recruit such people instead of fresh university graduates or people who come from a completely different company and would need a longer time to become productive.
I don't think that recruiting Nouveau people is motivated by a desire to harm Nouveau, but by the desire to get hire talented coders.