With this documentation people can make a driver from scratch, regardless. So any shortcomings you might have today, can and will be addressed provided there is enough interest. With blobs you just can't fix things, or update them to work with new kernels/technologies.
If i were to recommend a laptop purchase, i would suggest staying clear of Nvidia and pick Intel. No optimus. The people working in the kernel is giving suggestions to nvidia to reduce the damage. For example: minimize the blob and move it to user space, document and expose anything that can, interface from nouveau, etc. We will see if they listen.
What happens if nvidia were to go bankrupt tomorrow, or decide to terminate the nvidia linux driver? Your hardware would cease to work. With Ivy graphics, this will not occur because the documentation is out.
Is nvidia a hardware or software company? Do they want to sell chips or drivers? Intel makes hardware, and in fact general purpose processors. It is logical that people would want to program said processors. What about gpus? Aren't they becoming modern day co-processors? What good is hardware you can't use?
It is not important for nvidia to release or open source their driver, but documenting their GPUs so people can use them is. Of course that would result in people making their own driver from scratch, but so what? Thats why they bough the hardware for, to use it. GPUs are rapidly becoming general purpose, with many parallel computing projects already. Nothing stops nvidia from moving blobs to firmware, either loaded from user space when driver initializes or stored in hardware, and expose the rest to the community.
Optimus people are begging for minimal support, such as being able to use a single gpu all the time. Why can't they possibly help with that? I believe this is the kind of thing which made Linus say what needed to be said.
To no suprise I'm going to buy an Intel based laptop with the IGP as the only graphic adapter, couse AMD just kicked my ass for the last time. Thank you Intel, keep up the good work!
Props to Intel for sure. My Atom 330 based HTPC I bought from new egg for $200, gets better graphics performance than my 4 core desktop with an spanky new AMD based HD7770 SI card. The video card alone cost almost as much as my HTPC. Having a great graphics card means nothing with out great drivers. If Intel was in the discrete graphics card business I would have given them a hard look.
As for whether NVidia lost out on that China deal ask the share holders. Between that and the stink wafting across the internet due to Linux's comments I am sure there will be share holders starting to ask questions.
looking at this new set of PDF's especially http://intellinuxgraphics.org/docume...Vol2_Part3.pdf it seems almost everything required is there from hardware programming POV (but OC only x86 windows quick sync centric)
so potentially as the main upstream code base for "cross platform" Audio/Video Encode and decode its upto the x264.FFmpeg,AVconv dev's and the other downstream dev's extensively using that code base to take a look talk to each other and come up with a New real cross platform generic long term API that can be integrated into the existing code base and make use of this and other new related x86/ARM A/V documentation , so far though iv not seen any core dev's even mention the possibility of writing new code around this new info and the occasional 3rd party's sending one off patch's to the core x264.FFmpeg,AVconv dev's are very few to date.
who know's! it may now get better if they all start collaborating around it with this new doc release, i don't expect MESA's limited AV patches to ever take x264/FFmpeg's pride of place as the No1 quality AV code base used by everyone. ;)