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Old 10-03-2012, 01:53 PM
Marko Vojinovic
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On Wednesday, 3. October 2012. 2.55.25 jdow wrote:
> On 2012/10/03 02:01, Marko Vojinovic wrote:
> > How about government funding? There is a tried&tested scenario used for
> > some
> > time now all over the world, say in science. For example:
>
> Then you get what the government says you will want not what you do want.
> We saw that in Soviet Russia as a very glaring example.

That depends on how government is organized. In many countries the government
does not decide how the funding is actually used and which R&D projects are
financed. Those decisions are left to expert teams or peer review committees or
such institutions. People who get to evaluate project proposals are typically
the people who were voted by the community to be in those positions. It's
called democracy. ;-)

You shouldn't judge the whole idea based on one lousy implementation that
happened in Soviet Russia.

> > * You need money, and you have some skill to do something better than
> > others. * You apply for a research&development project; if you have a
> > good idea, you get a grant.
>
> Is this how you'd start Google, Twitter, or Facebook? My, how quaint.

Why not? If there is a serious need for an advanced search engine, and if you
think can do better than the existing facilities, go ahead and make a
proposal. If it makes sense, why do you think you would not get a grant?

Twitter and Facebook are really social/amusement/entertainment stuff, and they
started out with almost no funding at all, so I don't see any relevance here.
Neither of them is made on any groundbreaking new technology that needed
funding to develop.

Remember that the issue that started this topic was the performance of
graphics hardware and drivers. If you have a promising idea to construct
superior graphics hardware, or better drivers for the existing hardware, I'm
sure many people will want to listen.

> > * You use your knowledge to do something creative and useful. You share
> > the
> > results of your work with everyone else (you're being paid by taxpayer
> > money, so this is fair).
>
> Am I paid MORE if I produce something creative, whether or not the
> government wants it?

Your paycheck depends on the size of the grant money. If your proposal is
important/useful/successful, you'll get a bigger grant. It's quite naturally
organized.

> How about if customers want it and the government
> does not, especially if the government does not want it?

Look, the same system exists and works even in USA, in academia. The
government are the people who are democratically elected to govern. If you are
not satisfied with their decisions, vote for a different set of people in the
next elections.

Besides, the government gets to decide only how to cut the global state budget
into pieces and what to use those pieces for in general, not in particular.
For example, if 0.5% of state budget is decided to go into "computer hardware
development", the government itself is not so interested on which projects
exactly this money gets spent. These things are decided downstream by
committees where expert people are sitting. If you have a successful history
of past projects in graphics hardware development, you may get to be in such a
committee, and decide the faith of other people's project proposals, based on
your past expertise.

This is being done in academic research all over the world for quite some time
now, and works quite well, on the average. All serious countries in the world
have implemented this (and no, it has nothing to do with Soviet Communism).
I'm just saying that this model can be extended to other enterprises, which
are atm working under the "free market" paradigm, and suffering because of
global competitive behavior present in that paradigm. The nVidia/ATI example
is typical.

> > * You apply for the next R&D project, and the next, and the next... You
> > build reputation according to your performance, and in time get bigger
> > grants, bigger money, etc.
>
> You only get funding for what the government has declared the citizens
> want. Can you imagine an iPhone designed by a government? My imagination
> is not that strong.

Can you imagine the graphics card designed by the team of experts funded by
the government? I can, and I bet that it would be far superior in quality,
since the team that gets to design it does not care about cutting corners or
profit margins or trade secrets or such stuff. They would concentrate on making
a high-quality product, which would be of completely open design, so that
others can build on it and later create an even better piece of hardware.

> > This scenario is not optimized to make most money, but to make best
> > quality
> > products. Others can build on your work and your knowledge, and you can
> > build on theirs. It's a model which promotes cooperation instead of
> > competition.
>
> No, sir, it is optimized to produce what the commissars declare you will
> build. And commissars seem to have a lamentable disconnect with the people
> they own.

This is completely false. The "commissars" are people like you and me, which
are given the power to steer the R&D processes because they are trusted by the
people to use that power wisely.

> >> If I know how to do something that people really want and can live
> >> comfortably on what I can earn doing this, by what right does anybody
> >> come in and tell me I have to share my know how with all and sundry
> >> so that I'm stuck cold and hungry because I can no longer earn money
> >> performing my unique service? That is the foundation if the concept of
> >> intellectual property.
> >
> > Umm, no, what you are describing is called a "trade secret". And it is
> > completely ok, even necessary, to have trade secrects in the free market
> > scenario (as opposed to the government-funded R&D scenario that I
> > described
> > above, where trade secrets are disfavored and disfunctional).
>
> Do you realize that you are contradicting your screed above? Video driver
> software IS trade secret information, Kemo Sabe.

Where do you see a contradiction? I know that video drivers are a trade
secret, that's why they are closed-source in the first place. I am just saying
that trade secrets are not exactly the same thing as "intellectual property"
(but only a subset of it).

Best, :-)
Marko


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Old 10-03-2012, 02:27 PM
jdow
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 2012/10/03 06:53, Marko Vojinovic wrote:

On Wednesday, 3. October 2012. 2.55.25 jdow wrote:

On 2012/10/03 02:01, Marko Vojinovic wrote:

How about government funding? There is a tried&tested scenario used for
some
time now all over the world, say in science. For example:


Then you get what the government says you will want not what you do want.
We saw that in Soviet Russia as a very glaring example.


That depends on how government is organized. In many countries the government
does not decide how the funding is actually used and which R&D projects are
financed. Those decisions are left to expert teams or peer review committees or
such institutions. People who get to evaluate project proposals are typically
the people who were voted by the community to be in those positions. It's
called democracy. ;-)

You shouldn't judge the whole idea based on one lousy implementation that
happened in Soviet Russia.


Dumb question: Why do you think it will be different any time in the
future when it has never been different in the past? We already see
this effect with Obama supporting so called "Green" industries that
are going bust even with massive government subsidies. Governments
push agendas and are answerable to nobody, especially when they control
everything, such as your income, your ability to feed yourself, and so
forth. Capitalism gives a feedback mechanism that prunes off things
people don't want (Compuserve or AOL) giving them what they do want
(Twitter, Facebook, Slashdot). Where is the realtime feedback mechanism
within government?

{o.o}
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:49 PM
Joe Zeff
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 10/03/2012 02:55 AM, jdow wrote:

Then you get what the government says you will want not what you do want.
We saw that in Soviet Russia as a very glaring example.


"As long as they pretend to pay us, we'll pretend to work."
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:04 PM
Ralf Corsepius
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 10/03/2012 11:55 AM, jdow wrote:

On 2012/10/03 02:01, Marko Vojinovic wrote:

On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 18.52.10 jdow wrote:




How about government funding? There is a tried&tested scenario used
for some
time now all over the world, say in science. For example:


Then you get what the government says you will want not what you do want.
Right now we get, what the manifacturers say we will want, not what we
do want - I don't see much actual difference.


Ralf

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Old 10-04-2012, 01:25 AM
Mark LaPierre
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 10/03/2012 06:27 AM, Alan Cox wrote:

On Tue, 02 Oct 2012 20:05:38 -0400
Mark LaPierre<marklapier@aol.com> wrote:


On 10/02/2012 04:18 PM, Alan Evans wrote:

On Tue, Oct 2, 2012 at 11:56 AM, Roberto Ragusa wrote:

So final users would have had the best hardware running the best drivers
(open source too).
This is something which must not be permitted to happen. :-/


Not if it helps to sell the competitor's hardware.


Programmers, and corporations for that matter, have the right to decide
how they choose to distribute their property.


Software is not property.


Corporations are people too


Only in some broken countries but you are correct they still have to
survive.

Companies do open source seriously do it because it suits them for their
own purposes. Thats generally a good thing because self interest is a
great motivator and far better than the kind of sham token support from
many companies.

Free market economics sucks at finding optimal behaviour, it's just it
sucks less than most of the other models tried 8)

Alan


If I were to write a book, or paint a picture, or create a poster, or,
by any other creative means, produce some product from my efforts it is
my right to decide how, when, or if, I choose to distribute, transfer,
or share said product.


If my employer is paying me to create that product then the product
belongs to my employer, under whatever circumstances and conditions set
forth by my employer and the conditions of my employment, by the same
right. The fruit of my labor is my employers property.


Software is no different. Software I write for my employer belongs to
my employer to do with as my employer decides. Software I write on my
own belongs to me. I retain the rights to said software until I decide
how and when to release it. That software is not different, morally or
legally, from any other product I produce. If I create a drawing that
drawing is my property, no different from that software I wrote, or that
book that I wrote, or that airplane that I built. It is my property and
it it is my right to dispose of said property at my pleasure.


My comments above should not be construed to say that I favor or condone
the practice of patenting software. Software is similar to the product
of any other creative practice. Books, drawings, photographs, and
software property should be protected under copyright. Even the Free
Software Foundation agrees with this position by reason of promulgating
the practice of licensing software property under open source licensing.
Let me restate that. The FSF promotes licensing of software property
under open source license.


--
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v
/(_)
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Registerd Linux user No #267004
https://linuxcounter.net/
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:27 AM
jdow
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 2012/10/03 09:04, Ralf Corsepius wrote:

On 10/03/2012 11:55 AM, jdow wrote:

On 2012/10/03 02:01, Marko Vojinovic wrote:

On Tuesday, 2. October 2012. 18.52.10 jdow wrote:




How about government funding? There is a tried&tested scenario used
for some
time now all over the world, say in science. For example:


Then you get what the government says you will want not what you do want.

Right now we get, what the manifacturers say we will want, not what we do want -
I don't see much actual difference.


Where giant manufacturers are not protected by government red tape that
is so onerous it makes starting a new company too difficult to contemplate
(such as a land run by a chief executive who is in GE's pocket, for
example) you will get start-ups that fill the consumer demand vacuum. That
is how Microsoft started; that is how Linux started; that is how Apple
started in the big machines dominated world; that is how Google started
in the clumsy search engine world; that is how MySpace started and was
later supplanted by FaceBook; and the list goes on.

That is why you want small government not overwhelming large take care of
everything "but it's supposed to be benevolent" government. And before
you ask government to take something over or make new laws contemplate
what that means in terms of larger government.

I really don't think Linux or GNU or any FOSS could exist in a purely
communistic society or even a plain old tyranny like Bobby Mugabe-land.
FOSS is a good idea. It's not the only good idea out there. Nor is it
a solution for everything.

{o.o}
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:20 AM
"Eddie G. O'Connor Jr."
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On 10/03/2012 08:39 AM, Roger wrote:




On 03/10/12 19:18, Eddie G. O'Connor
Jr. wrote:




On 10/02/2012 12:14 AM, Junayeed
Ahnaf wrote:



The header is self explanatory. I always wonder
what bad would it bring to the vendor if they open source
their graphics driver?

*

*

Thoughts?






Junayeed Ahnaf Nirjhor












If I had to hazard a guess?...I would say it more about money
than anything else. Especially in THIS day & age when the
economic landscape is bleak....and there's more "cloning" going
on than anything else....(Apple vs. Samsung?) even those hi-def
TV's that started out costing $3000.00 a pop are
now...what?....like $600 at WalMart?.....just the capitalistic
"nature of the beast"....





EGO II







It's simply greed based on fear of loss.

Take the most famous examples of open sourcing. Blender3D, Ton and
his crew have triumphed with the movies they make being globally
acclaimed and a totally free system being used by some of the
larger organisations. They raise money by giving away everything
and they sell the complete movie with all the source files for a
token sum so that everyone benefits.

Take Guido and Python, Matz and Ruby, these among some of the more
famous people in the computer industry. Are any of the programmers
in Apple or Microsoft so well known?

Drupal, Gimp, and the list goes on. It is only fear of loss of
something which they do not really own that prohibits.

Roger









That's an interesting way of looking at it, I've never thought about
it....Greed Based On Fear Of Loss.......WOW!....that would explain a
LOT when it comes to companies suing each other over the most
frivolous of claims....("He put a FRUIT on his device....we are
staking a CLAIM on that fruit.....even though it's NOT an
Apple....LoL!) Sorry to poke fun at them but they kinda "earned"
it!...)...LoL!





EGO II



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Old 10-04-2012, 11:24 AM
Alan Cox
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

> I really don't think Linux or GNU or any FOSS could exist in a purely
> communistic society or even a plain old tyranny like Bobby Mugabe-land.

It manages to exist in the USSA

If you look at Linux contributions they come from everywhere. The core of
the network routing code was written by Russians (and Alexey who
worked at a nuclear research instutite even turned up at OLS with a
'minder' who as per every stereotype was apparently capable of drinking
vodka in half pints). We have code from government projects, from
educational projects (some of which are in effect state funded), from
businesses, from volunteers, from a wide variety of non profit causes.
Today you can boot a box running Russian based network code with an NSA
written ethernet driver.

While the debate is mildly amusing the world is not black and white. The
real world runs on a mix of fudges, bits of different philosophies all
taped together and often stealing bits of each others material while
claiming to do the opposite.

Linux reflects that, free software reflects that. It's a myriad different
things to a myriad different groups of people. Even the open source/free
software divide is much about "good for business" v "good for society"
being seen as the prime goal of whoever is involved.

Alan

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Old 10-04-2012, 11:27 AM
Alan Cox
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

> If I were to write a book, or paint a picture, or create a poster, or,
> by any other creative means, produce some product from my efforts it is
> my right to decide how, when, or if, I choose to distribute, transfer,
> or share said product.

Actually it's not. Even in the US. If you paint a picture I can make fair
use of it, use it for some news purposes, parody it. If you make music
and publish it I can obtain a license and you cannot stop me.

You cannot choose to only sell your book to black people, you cannot
choose to do a vast array of things with it including controlling resale.

> legally, from any other product I produce. If I create a drawing that
> drawing is my property

The paper is your property, the paint is your property, the abstract
drawing that sits on it is not property and the moment someone
photographs it the distinction becomes immediately obvious.

Alan
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:28 PM
Marko Vojinovic
 
Default Why graphics drivers are proprietary

On Thursday, 4. October 2012. 12.27.51 Alan Cox wrote:
> > legally, from any other product I produce. If I create a drawing that
> > drawing is my property
>
> The paper is your property, the paint is your property, the abstract
> drawing that sits on it is not property and the moment someone
> photographs it the distinction becomes immediately obvious.

Finally, someone to state the fundamental difference between information and
property. Great stuff, Alan! :-)

To add, I can only quote the "free information commandment" ;-) :

<quote>
Thou Shalt Not Sell Information.
</quote>

Best, :-)
Marko


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