I'm sure some of the open source guys sometimes ask themselves why they work so hard for such an ungrateful user base that is perennially dissatisfied with the underperforming, buggy and feature-deprived effort (in the discerning opinion of the users, of course) that they roll out. Hey, it's a valid sentiment. I sometimes ask myself why I spend $550 and up on video cards every 2 years for a company that will probably not decently support my purchases with 100% working Linux graphics drivers on release day until 20 or more years from now, if indeed they ever get there. And who knows, by the time the driver support is there, hardware accelerated graphics might be obsoleted, either by advances in internet connectivity leading to everything being run by services similar to OnLive, or maybe we'll go back into a few decades of CPU-based rendering... it's hard to see where the tech is going. But in the here and now, I don't feel confident that I can get what I need to run this hardware the way I want to, and that is seriously making me reconsider my choice of brand.
I guess someday the volunteer developers will figure it's not worth their effort and pack up, and the open source division at AMD will get shut down, and I'll stop buying AMD video cards and just use Intel because it bloody works... everything comes to an end. I mean, that is, unless true excellence can actually be obtained with the open drivers? Excellence is extremely hard to define, but there's a certain point of quality after which adding more doesn't really make it any better; you've already completely satisfied your users. Proprietary-ness exempted, the best example I can think of is the Windows Nvidia binary driver. On the open source side, the closest I can think of is the Apache web server. Mesa is nowhere near sniffing the quality of either of those products though.
I wish I didn't have to be so demanding, but AMD imposes it upon themselves by releasing such good cards. You put it out there like a bait, and like a fool fish I bite the bait. What do you expect? That said, this fish is getting a little smarter after being caught and released a few times.
I want my card to do what it's capable of, on Linux, with open source drivers that mostly work, but for which I can contribute to if I have a pet peeve bug -- either with a patch or a good bug report (I've got a few actual bug reports under my belt that have been fixed, so thankfully my day job in QA is paying off for the community ). Unfortunately I can't really make much out of a KMS driver and drawing triangles in EGL, so until I can run some actual applications on RadeonSI, you won't see any bug reports from me.