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Google's DiBona On An Open AMD, Intel

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Published on 04 February 2008 07:34 PM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in Google
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Back during the first-ever Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit that was hosted at the Googleplex, there were several interesting bits of information worth reporting. One of these was a comment made by Google's Chris DiBona, who serves as the open-source program manager for this Internet giant. Chris DiBona had said "I would love to get either NVIDIA and ATI to actually give us the specs on the drivers we want or let's just reverse engineer everything and do it ourselves...Then people would say oh well there's free drivers out there, more people are using it, we'll open source our drivers so the users will use our driver and at least get the best experience." The complete quote is available in our earlier article.

As luck would have it, AMD has since developed an open-source strategy with the RadeonHD driver and delivering NDA-free documentation. Most recently, Intel has openly released their 965/G35 documentation that even covers their 3D IGP blocks and complements their long-standing open-source display driver (xf86-video-intel).

Chris DiBona was scheduled to attend and speak at the KDE 4.0 release event, but he was unable to do so because of a business trip. We had hoped to ask him at the event what he thought of AMD's open-source embracement but as a result of him being away we were unable to do so. However, after the Intel 965/G35 announcement last week, we followed up with him to see if he had any comments on this recent open-source activity. Below is his concise response.
Yeah, I think it is pretty great that they're going down this road. I hope nvidia does this too. Saves no end of trouble.

Many are looking forward to an open-source NVIDIA, which will hopefully come true sooner rather than later.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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