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Our way or the sane way

Linux Hater's Blog - Mon, 30/06/2008 - 11:44pm
For some reason, the past few days on the linux sub-reddit seem to be full of articles talking about how nvidia sucks, or how people are going to switch to ATI, or how the kernel devs have formed a drum circle to convince nvidia that they suck (where's Linus, btw?).

What really pisses me off is that all these Linux fanboys are consuming precious nvidia resources that they could otherwise spend to improve their products or better their drivers on platforms that matter. Seriously, at this point, the only reason nvidia distributes any kind of driver for the non-windows platforms is for mindshare, and so that the FOSS crowd won't go around spreading FUD about them. It's a form of PR blackmail, really. Don't want to play by our rules? Fine, but we'll send the FOSS mob out on the internets to destroy your geek cred.

edit: Ok fine, so they do make some money off of this stuff. But don't go telling any of the freetards that. I don't care if they've found a few ass-hat customers that bought into Linux and are now desperate for a graphics solution that works.

But what it really shows is that the FOSS crowd really doesn't give two shits about businesses, and that's why they never get taken seriously.

Like it or not, Microsoft has shown that its model for developing software and enabling independent hardware and software developers works. It generates assloads of revenue (for itself and for those other companies) and creates incentive for innovation. A bunch of companies are built on the sole reason that playing in the MS ecosystem allows them to make money. Yes, the software isn't perfect, but perfection is never attainable, so you might as well do the thing that a) makes you a living, b) gets a bunch of people to help you because it makes them a living, and c) moves generally in the right direction.

But hold on just a sec. Along come the fosstards saying that everyone's doing everything wrong. That nobody should have secret sauces and everything should be out in the open. It was fine when they were playing in their own little corner, not really having any effect on the real world, but now they have enough cult members act like a real mob.

I know what Nvidia really wants to say to the mobtards, but just can't say it in public: Show me the fucking money.

You see, drivers don't fall out of the sky for free. And neither does documentation. It costs them money to develop and maintain these things. But you know, they're totally incented to do this because Linux is like, 2% of the market, and they've managed to split themselves into all kinds of different kernel versions and X versions that make it a support nightmare. Wait, why should Nvidia care again? Because they should want freedom?

Oh? you want to write the drivers for them if they just provide the docs? Great! Should they tell you all our secrets too? Should they just hand over their entire manufacturing process to be managed by a bunch of asshats that only care if it works for them? Sorry! It turns out the people in the real world want stuff that's working, and want to be able to call them up when it doesn't, and they'd like to be able to help those people out. They don't trust you clowns to do this all in a competent way for them. You certainly have already shown that you can't even put a consistent platform together. So why the fuck would they believe you about anything else?

I know what the first N comments are going to be: blah blah Intel blah blah, blah blah AMD blah blah.

Yes, Intel makes free drivers. Guess what, their chips are also basic and cheap. They want the graphics layer to be essentially commoditized. In that frame of mind, it makes sense to write open drivers. They're not competing on the bleeding edge. They want their stuff to run everywhere. Plus they're a giant company with tons of cash to waste. In the long run, it might also give them leverage against MS, should MS really try to screw them in the future.

And, yes, AMD has opened up some of their stuff. But guys, have you ever used AMD/ATI drivers on Windows? It fucking blows. Those guys couldn't write drivers to save their cocks'n'balls. So, given that you can't write decent drivers in the first place, it makes sense to throw the task over to the oss crowd right? Too bad the crowd isn't going to write Windows drivers for them.

Actually, that would be an awesome stunt. ATI to fosstards: "Go write awesome Windows drivers for us, so that we can continue to stay in business and make openly documented cards for you lusers. Oh, and write drivers for those too. Have fun!"