I hear what your saying and I understand why. But as you can see from the amount of posts about this news here and on other sites, it's obvious that people want to believe this means major changes for Linux gaming. I'm willing to buy in completely to the optimism though... it can't hurt.
Originally Posted by Svartalf
What can hurt though is if AMD/ATI screws this up somehow, and I don't mean by releasing the needed specs along with an open-source driver that blows... I mean releasing an open-source driver that blows and not following that up with the specs for the Linux community to do something to fix it. The only thing I really hope comes out of all this is for open source developers to have the tools necessary to improve (or create if needed) a 3D driver. If that doesn't happen eventually then this really isn't something to get all that excited about. So far we don't have any reason to believe this won't happen.
It will be a interesting year in review next Sept. Opensource... you now are getting what you need..... time to put up or shut up.
take a look at the comments at digg/slashdot. looks like nvidia became the "linux bad guy" now .
what a sudden turn of events
maybe they (nvidia) are already concerned about this.
Could also backfire with Nvidia saying "screw linux development. They are a small part of our revenue and it's cheaper to let ATI concentrate on the small niche markets then to worry about it ourselves"
If after a year a person can't play UT3 at faster framerates then the closed source alternatives it actually adds fuel to closed source advocates saying "See, we gave you what you need, performance still is superior in closed source solutions." If that happens the entire FOSS movement gets a HUGE black eye that squanders future FOSS attempts.
Maybe the expectations of many people are just too high. Developing OpenGL drivers isn't easy and there are very few developers working on it, while ATI/AMD and NVidia have lots of real experts and a lot experience at hand - which are working full-time on the drivers.
I don't think we'll have a driver in a year that outperforms ATI's closed source driver, we'll be lucky if it can keep up with it. Open Source doesn't magically solve all problems.
However, this driver will probably much better in other aspects, like Xrandr (hotplug) support or 2D acceleration.
This hasn't changed my mind on buying only Intel systems. ATI have repeatedly lied to their customers about supporting Linux, only to drop things half-way through, with no explanation. R100 users were swept under the carpet. R200 users were told they'd be supported by fglrx, then later told that the open-source driver was their only option. R300 users have had a very buggy fglrx, or the completely reverse-engineered open-source driver.
I own all 3 of the above. My current laptop has a Radeon X700 mobility - not the latest hardware, but certainly not to be snorted at. Nothing that ATI has done - EVER - has helped the open-source driver for this card.
So while people with rose-coloured glasses proclaim their undying love for ATI, I'm sorry, but I've been around too long to be fooled by this. When ATI release full specs for non-current hardware, ie R300, I may concede that things have changed. Until then ... I've heard it all before - this is a marketing exercise to drum up support for their latest cards. In other words, ATI feels that owners of older hardware can go to hell ...
I don't expect this to be high-priority for AMD unless one of their old chipsets is used to show how well this new process can work. In other words, this may happen if an older chipset turns out to be so much easier to get a good 3D driver working compared to the latest chipsets.
Originally Posted by dkasak
Even if they don't provide tons of quality support for older chipsets it won't change my outlook on this situation. AMD/ATI could even announce that they will be providing no information on any card later than their upcoming XXXEliteX3000XXX card next year, and as long as the support they do offer on that upcoming card is quality then I'll be a happy customer. I'm interested in getting good quality 3D working on my Linux box, and my definition of 'good quality' gets better and better with each new generation of video hardware and new games released. I'm sure I'm not the only one with this outlook.
Older hardware is not nearly as capable as newer hardware in running the latest games, and getting the hardware support into Linux for new games can help sway the gaming industry towards adopting Linux-friendly development practices. That means more games for Linux users, and in turn a greater need for more 3D support in Linux. If AMD is faced with choosing between releasing documentation on more of the latest features of upcoming hardware vs. getting all relevant information together for older chipsets, then I hope they will go with the new hardware every time.
You are looking at the Linux market from the wrong perspective: It has never been about the consumers! Not for ATi, nor for nVidia! It has always been about the professional market. Initially consumer support was a "by product" simply because in many instances consumer-grade hardware was being utilized for Professional-grade tasks. This is how both companies started off, and since then the consumer market in Linux has grown (still not to the point of being the sole justification of its existence).
Originally Posted by deanjo
They have acknowledge that and the Linux consumer market is expanding at a steady pace. AMD has many interests in this sector, not only for Professional or Consumer hardware, but for future developments. I'd venture to guess that one of the main applications of the upcoming GPU/CPU products will be precisely one of the most talked about projects in the IT world: The OLPC. Currently it is powered by AMD's Geode chips, but in the future I'm sure it'll be powered by a more powerful CPU with a GPU on the same die (allowing for even better power consumption performance), and guess what does the OLPC runs? Here's a hint, it ain't a M$ OS.
Alright I just flipped through that thing, god damn that is a big book. I could never write a driver off that, I'd go insane haha.