you're right, i've always really wished that i could say to people, 'haha, joke's on you, you bought the wrong hardware but if you just bought a piece of shit longsoon laptop instead then everything would work perfectly'.
either that or linux works flawlessly out of the box, competitive with other operating systems, on hardware actual people really buy.
I know you were responding to a troll, but i want to point out that not all the people who question this "pay for nouveau support" idea are.
I want to support all hardware on linux, I just feel like the community as a whole would be in a lot better position if everyone focused on bringing up certain hardware first. Then once it's in a good position, the community could move on to other hardware.
At that point, you could at least point people to certain hardware that was supported well, and tell people who didn't have it that the support would be coming but just isn't ready yet.
Instead, we currently have *bad* support for everything, and no one is happy.
Given the fact that docs are available for radeon hardware, I absolutely think it makes sense to polish off a driver there first - maybe focusing on r700 or evergreen hardware. Once that was in a good spot, people could switch over to an nvidia generation.
With r700 support good, the AMD devs and random OSS contributors could probably copy that code into supporting other generations on their own, while organizations like X.Org could move their attention to nvidia.
I know this will never actually happen, because everyone wants their own hardware to be supported now, and no one is willing to sacrifice the good of their own projects for the long-term benefits of the entire community.