Open Source Leaders: Take Intel to Task

Posted by jayrfink on Jan 6, 2018 2:00 PM EDT
LXer; By Jay Fink
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For a long time engineers, programmmers and sysadmins alike have been beholden to hardware design flaws. Constantly dealing with work arounds from unpexpected bugs to changes that make little sense. Many Open Source leaders have a voice, they can change things if they come together now.

For longer than I can remember OS developers have been frustrated time and time again by the decisions of hardware designers. From infamous binary blobs to the boot jmp code that just never went away the boggling number of workarounds we have had to implement are at this point beyond enumeration (although if someone wanted to go ahead and do that we sure would be interested). Intel in particular, probably due to profit pressure, has made some questionable design decisions in the past. I am not going to get into all of those they are well documented and searchable on the world wide wait. Instead I would ask that those Open Source leaders who do have a voice get together and try to enact change.

I do not know Linus Torvalds or Theo de Raadt. I have never met either of them and have read very little about them. What I do know, gleaned from email archives, is when it comes to bum hardware: they both have pretty strong opinions. Both Linus and Theo can be a bit rough around the edges when it comes to giving their thoughts about hardware design flaws: but at least they have a voice. Also, Linus and Theo have often been at odds whether it be about how to approach OS design, licensing etc but I suspect, or I at least have to believe, the latest incident from intel (the Spectre and Meltdown flaws) is one area they agree on.

Linus and Theo cannot possibly be the only Open Source leaders out there who are frustrated and tired of being jerked around by intel. What I hope comes out of this is not many different voices saying the same thing here and there but instead, perhaps, our various leaders could get together and take intel to task on this issue. Intel not only created a horrible design flaw they lied by omission about it for several months. During those months the Intel CEO quietly dumped his stock. What a hero.

I am no open source leader. I can barely program Hello World without causing a segfault. I am just a sysadmin (and not a very good one at that) with a keyboard. People like Linus, Theo and other Open Source leaders have the power to change things or in the least have the power to let the rest of us know exactly what intel has done and maybe why we should be skeptical too.

» Read more about: Story Type: News Story; Groups: Intel, Linux

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