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Google & Open-Source ATI/NVIDIA Drivers

Google

Published on 15 June 2007 09:15 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Google
4 Comments

During the state of the Linux round-table discussion on the first day of the Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit, James Bottomley (Linux kernel developer) had asked the panelists what are the top two things each panelist would like from the Linux community. Among the panelists was Google's Chris DiBona, who is the open-source program manager at Google. His response was interesting when he had said the following: "I would love to get either NVIDIA and ATI to actually give us the specs on the drivers we want or let's just reverse engineer everything and do it ourselves. I would like to see you guys do that. Because I think that I am just so tired of this conversation and before what we would do is we would just do it. Then people would say oh well there's free drivers out there, more people are using it, we'll open source our drivers so the users will use our driver and at least get the best experience." Chris had went on to add, "I've met Jensen and Chris over at NVIDIA and have said to them almost every Wednesday morning as they go to my gym, I say you guys have got to open this up because it will just get uglier and uglier and uglier... I would totally support that. I think that it's important to enhance the desktop."

Will Google ultimately have any influence in open-sourcing the ATI and NVIDIA binary blobs? Or will they be further embracing projects like Nouveau and the R500 reverse engineering? No further action on Linux graphics drivers / proprietary drivers was taken at the Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit or during the Desktop Architects Meeting 4 (DAM-4).

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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