[nycbug-talk] OpenBSD and blobs

Jeff Quast af.dingo at gmail.com
Thu Dec 14 17:44:18 EST 2006

On 12/14/06, Marc Spitzer <mspitzer at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 12/14/06, michael <lists at genoverly.net> wrote:
> > On Thu, 14 Dec 2006 10:17:33 -0500
> > "Marc Spitzer" <mspitzer at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > On 12/14/06, Jeff Quast <af.dingo at gmail.com> wrote:
> > > > The windows driver wraps, binary blobs, and drivers under NDA out
> > > > there and the users who accept them are an absolute shame to the
> > > > cause of the open source community. The attitude of "I just want it
> > > > to work" is short sighted, selfish, and harmful.
> > >
> > > I just want it to work is a perfectly reasonable attitude for an end
> > > user to have.  I as an end user need wireless on my laptop this is how
> > > I do it.  Now this is how I do it is the interesting bit, do I use a
> > > blob or just install windows or linux?  All three work and I need
> > > wireless, I do not need xBSD nearly as much.  If some one wants to
> > > provide a different alternitive, open source driver for example, fine
> > > but t it is not on the table yet is it?
> > >
> > > marc
> >
> > I have wireless in my laptop and an AP at home.  I run OpenBSD and "it
> > just works".
> >
> > Frankly, we don't need xBSD or wireless or anything *that* badly.  But
> > when we do, we have choices.  As a user (and like the above post), I
> > paid for the hardware and want to use it.  I support the spirit behind
> > open source drivers and chose not to use binary drivers.
> >
> > I chose a model by a vendor that has provided documentation and is
> > supported by the project.
> >
> > While I see/hear the argument to blindly accept binary drivers, I don't
> > understand the choice to do so... as per reasons stated already. Nobody
> > is forcing anyone to make the choice of using binary drivers.. people
> > make that choice on their own.  And, as stated by many, to the
> > detriment of others.
> >
> > I had a choice; and after careful thought, believe I made the right one.
> >
> > You have a choice.
> >
> I am talking about users, myself when I put on my user hat as well.
> And when wearing that hat I want web/email to just work.  That
> includes the network as well.  Now most of the time I like playing
> with computers, poking around in the kernel etc, but sometimes I just
> need things to work.  If blobs, or even windows, get things to work as
> I need it to then that is what I do that is all.  If you need to do
> all kinds of leg work, upto compiling a custom OS, to get things
> running then by the meer fact of you doing this you are not an end
> user nor are you behaving as one.
> marc
> --
> Freedom is nothing but a chance to be better.
> Albert Camus


Maybe my criticism was misinterpreted because I was so brief.

I don't shop at walmart. I'm told that supporting walmart helps
destroy my local economy. I live in Flint, MI, and it is bad here (by
US standards, of course). I am responsible enough to sacrifice small
price cuts for myself, for a very tiny small gain for everybody else
in my area. And this is how I disagree with your argument about
looking at it from a user's perspective.

I'm not an economist. I don't know anything about economy, never took
economy in college and I don't plan to. But when expert financial
advisers explain in simple language why Walmart is bad for our
economy, I act on it by not shopping at walmart.

Now expert kernel developers who know a lot more than us are yelling
danger, hell, and fire. People who write some of the very best open
source code have taken time out of doing what they love to spell to us
quite plainly why open documentation is so important. I'm listening.

This is one of the very few ways users can help the open source
community without touching source code. You can make responsible
choices and show our vendors that we want our hardware to work.
http://www.vendorwatch.org is helpful.

I still mean it: Shame on you. Please don't shit where we all sleep.


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