Intel's Former Vulkan Driver Lead Dev Lands Great Role For Improving Linux Graphics
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 17 January 2022 at 01:07 PM EST. 20 Comments
MESA --
Jason Ekstrand who was the lead developer of Intel's open-source "ANV" Vulkan Linux driver left Intel in December and has now revealed details about his new role.

Ekstrand's prolific work on the Intel ANV driver over the past number of years has made him one of the top five contributors to Mesa by commit count even with only being involved in the open-source Linux graphics scene since 2013. When he announced he was leaving Intel came as a bit of a surprise, but at least it turns out his new role will be still benefiting the upstream open-source Linux 3D graphics ecosystem.

Ekstrand announced today he is joining Collabora beginning next month. While a consulting firm, he will be focused on upstream contributions to the open-source 3D Linux graphics stack and have free rein at that besides helping onboard new Collabora developers and assisting in those efforts.

He wrote on his blog today, "In my new role at Collabora, my mandate consists of two things: invest in and mentor the Collabora 3D graphics team and invest in upstream Linux and open-source graphics however I see fit. I won’t be expected to do any contract work. I may meet with clients from time to time and I’ll likely get involved more with the various Collabora-driven Mesa projects but my primary focus will be on ensuring that upstream is healthy. I won’t be tied to any one driver or hardware vendor either. Sure, it’d be good to do a bit of Panfrost work so I can help Alyssa out since she’s now my coworker and I’ll likely still work on Intel drivers a bit since that’s my home turf. But, at the end of the day, I’m now free to put my effort wherever it’s needed in the stack without concern for corporate priorities. Ray-tracing in RADV? Why not. OpenCL 3.0 for everyone? Sure. Hacking on a new kernel interface for Freedreno? That’s fine too. As far as I’m concerned, when it comes to how I spend my engineering effort, I now report directly to upstream. No strings attached."

It certainly sounds like a great role and one that should benefit the upstream open-source 3D Linux graphics stack greatly. Congratulations to Jason on his new role.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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