If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Drestin Blac » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00



http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
some cash...

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by sfcyb.. » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00




Quote:> http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste
of
> some cash...

Yeah, An admitted open source basher calling people names... Wow, no
wonder you like this guy, drestin.

The main problem with hardware would be the cost of manufacture
(including test prototypes) and distribution of hardware
would be much higher than that of software. It would be more difficult
for a person who does not have the hardware to make chips to contribute
to the testing of such hardware. Any one who has a PC can get compilers
and have the tools necessary to develop code. Very few people have the
capacity to build chips for testing. Although you could, in theory, do
an open source chip design, the inability to test the design, would
prohibit the completion of the project.

Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Mig Mi » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00



> http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> some cash...

Hey, his opinion is just as valid as mine or yours... :-)
 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by 5X » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00



> Yeah, An admitted open source basher calling people names... Wow, no
> wonder you like this guy, drestin.

Indeed.

Quote:> The main problem with hardware would be the cost of manufacture
> (including test prototypes) and distribution of hardware
> would be much higher than that of software. It would be more difficult
> for a person who does not have the hardware to make chips to contribute
> to the testing of such hardware. Any one who has a PC can get compilers
> and have the tools necessary to develop code. Very few people have the
> capacity to build chips for testing.

Mostly for two reasons:

1. they dont know how to do chip design, and it is traditionally
something of a "mystical" art.

2. they dont have access to design software

#1 above is understandable of course, though in my opinion chip design
isnt the monstrous beast that its made out to be by those who do it...
I think the biggest hurdle is designing something that fits current
standards (i.e. something that can run an actual OPERATING system)

#2 above is unfortunate, because the chip design software from
motorola (RISC, PPC, anything else) is prohibitively expensive.

Quote:> Although you could, in theory, do
> an open source chip design, the inability to test the design, would
> prohibit the completion of the project.

The chip design in motorola's design suite is tested within the suite
itself.  You can go all the way up to running your operating system
of choice on your "virtual" chip.  Once you have something that works,
you send the schematic to motorola, who burns a prototype.  Then you
plug it into whatever youre going to plug it into (theyll even fit
it with a heatsink and everything for you) and see if it works.

The most expensive part of the whole process is the design software,
unfortunately....

But fortunately, thats also the most likely part of the equation
to change.

p0ok

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Truckasauru » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00




Quote:> http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

In this article, Metcalfe claims that Open source advocates are anti-
propriety, and that business is evil, and he therefore claims that
open source advocates (and especially Linus Torvalds) resemble the pigs
in Orwells novel "Animal farm";
First the animals, under the leadership of the pigs, drive the evil
farmer away, and later become like the evil farmer them selves.
A good story, that tells a lot about human behaviour, and how power
corrupts.

The analogy does not hold, however.
Real open source advocates have _never_ claimed big business to be evil,
and that all software has to be open. The claim made by open source
advocates is, that software created in an open environment (the Bazaar)
has the potential of developing into something that is far better than
any propriety conterparts.
So if your goal (in this case Transmetas goal) is to make money, then
of course you'll keep the code closed. There is no problem in open
source software living alongside with propriety software. Just see the
open source Wine project - designed to enable people to use their
propriety software under a non-Windows environment. Just look at Loki
software, bringing propriety games to the Linux platform. Just look at
RedHat, who shipped RH5.0 with Metro-X, which is also propriety.

So Linus supporting something that is non-open source is nothing new
at all. This suggests to me that this Metcalfe guy has been asleep,
and he never really has realized what open source software is about.
He's just a bitter old man, who ran out of ideas, and therefore now
is desperately seeking something or someone to be bitter at.

Quote:> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste
of
> some cash...

... and Drestin here shows that he has as little a clue about open
source as Metcalfe.
Thanks for showing this, Dres, but we already knew that you were
clueless.

--
"Dear someone you've never heard of,
how is so-and-so. Blah blah.
Yours truly, some bozo." - Homer Simpson
Martin A. Boegelund.

Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Geoff La » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00




Quote:> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> some cash...

Was MS ever "loved"?  More tolerated.  Now that it's past it's prime and
actively attempting to stifle innovation, it's time for it to go.

--
Geoff. Lane.   |   Today's target: 47.639963 N; 122.130295 W. Fire at Will!!

To register this tagline, send $29 to me

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by JEDIDI » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00





>> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
>> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
>> some cash...

>Was MS ever "loved"?  More tolerated.  Now that it's past it's prime and
>actively attempting to stifle innovation, it's time for it to go.

        MS was certainly never loved for 'being small'. For as long
        as it's been 'popular' it has always been so because it was
        percieved as the biggest bully on the block.
 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Drestin Blac » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00





> > History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> > vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> > some cash...

> Was MS ever "loved"?  More tolerated.  Now that it's past it's prime and
> actively attempting to stifle innovation, it's time for it to go.

I think perhaps you weren't there back then...
 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Drestin Blac » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00






> >> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> >> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste
of
> >> some cash...

> >Was MS ever "loved"?  More tolerated.  Now that it's past it's prime and
> >actively attempting to stifle innovation, it's time for it to go.

> MS was certainly never loved for 'being small'. For as long
> as it's been 'popular' it has always been so because it was
> percieved as the biggest bully on the block.

I see you weren't around in the beginning... without this experience you
can't really speak for those that were there and lived it.
 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Rob S. Wolfr » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00





>> Was MS ever "loved"?  More tolerated.  Now that it's past it's prime and
>> actively attempting to stifle innovation, it's time for it to go.

>I think perhaps you weren't there back then...

Were you? I wasn't but I didn't follow too much afterwards and I lurk a
lot in a.f.c. I also read the 1980 interview by Bthory-Kitsz and the
1976 "Open Letter to Hobbyists". I think that Gates and Allen are mainly
responsible for the proprietizing of software, contrary to the 1978
CONTU report, and he was definately not liked for that.
Come to think of it, the US had the CONTU report in 1978 and the DMCA 20
years later. How much can a country slip...

Cheers,
Rob
--

   "I imagine that playing with one's * piercings
  while waiting for a client's disk to fsck or something
   would probably not be appropriate."  -- 'Skud' in a.s.r.

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Ian Pulsfor » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00


So who said making money is baaaaaad?


> http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

> History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> some cash...

--
"... parame vyomantsoanga veda yadi va na veda."
 Nasadiya Sukta (Hymn of Creation) - Rig Veda X.129
 [tr: "... IT knows - or maybe even IT does not know."]
 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Craig Kelle » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00




> > http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

> > History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> > vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> > some cash...

> Interestingly enough, I find the writer abhorrent. Confusing hardware
> and software is the sign of true ignorance. In hardware, the object is
> to sell physical devices. To sell physical devices, one must protect the
> manufacturing process. In software, in the end, all one sells is a
> service. Like it of not this is the truth. No one can sell a "License"
> to use software unless there is a promise of some kind of support. ISV's
> live and die by this. (Except, perhaps, those of monopolistic
> tendencies)

> Trying to characterize the market forces of software as you would
> hardware, or vice versa, is the sign of someone in need of a clue.

> Open source software is important for the software industry. Chip masks
> are not analogous.

While Metcalf does commit quite a few errors, I feel that he is
correct in saying that the morphing code should be free software.
Wasn't it Linus himself that said "The Crusoe is a microprocessor done
completely in software"?  Redefining software to be "chip masks" is
just hairsplitting.

If the tools and speicifications were free, you'd see Transmeta chips
"emulating" everything from the tried-and-true x86 all the way to
700Mhz Z-80 or 6502s.  Cool things like that well *never* be done by
Transmeta themselves because they'd never make money on it.  I'm sure
the AROS team (www.aros.org) would love to implement a 68k version
(heck, they could emulate some of the custom hardware too..); then
they may just be able to make it binary-compatible instead of simply
source-compatible.

It is software.  Software should be open-sourced to maximize it's
potential.  People would buy more Transmeta chips if they could do
this (assuming that you could "flash" the microprocessor thousands of
times without degredation);  the chip would perform in a wider class
of environments.

--
The wheel is turning but the hamster is dead.


 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Donovan Rebbec » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00



>The analogy does not hold, however.
>Real open source advocates have _never_ claimed big business to be evil,

Some are certainly anti-property, at least anti-intellectual property.
But then again, many are not. Most do not see an obligation to share
software, they recognise it as a voluntary act.

The GPL is not really "communist", because it doesn't undermine the
right of others to intellectual property. Rather, it is a way that
one can share their own intellectual property.

Quote:>and that all software has to be open.

Well RMS's rants come close to saying that "all software must be open".

Quote:>at all. This suggests to me that this Metcalfe guy has been asleep,
>and he never really has realized what open source software is about.

Don't underestimate him. I doubt he believes his own FUD.

--
Donovan

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by mlw » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00





> > > http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

> > > History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> > > vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> > > some cash...

> > Interestingly enough, I find the writer abhorrent. Confusing hardware
> > and software is the sign of true ignorance. In hardware, the object is
> > to sell physical devices. To sell physical devices, one must protect the
> > manufacturing process. In software, in the end, all one sells is a
> > service. Like it of not this is the truth. No one can sell a "License"
> > to use software unless there is a promise of some kind of support. ISV's
> > live and die by this. (Except, perhaps, those of monopolistic
> > tendencies)

> > Trying to characterize the market forces of software as you would
> > hardware, or vice versa, is the sign of someone in need of a clue.

> > Open source software is important for the software industry. Chip masks
> > are not analogous.

> While Metcalf does commit quite a few errors, I feel that he is
> correct in saying that the morphing code should be free software.
> Wasn't it Linus himself that said "The Crusoe is a microprocessor done
> completely in software"?  Redefining software to be "chip masks" is
> just hairsplitting.

Not at all.

Quote:

> If the tools and speicifications were free, you'd see Transmeta chips
> "emulating" everything from the tried-and-true x86 all the way to
> 700Mhz Z-80 or 6502s.  Cool things like that well *never* be done by
> Transmeta themselves because they'd never make money on it.  I'm sure
> the AROS team (www.aros.org) would love to implement a 68k version
> (heck, they could emulate some of the custom hardware too..); then
> they may just be able to make it binary-compatible instead of simply
> source-compatible.

Transmeta is a hardware company. The are producing a physical device,
they make income from selling physical devices.

Quote:

> It is software.  Software should be open-sourced to maximize it's
> potential.  People would buy more Transmeta chips if they could do
> this (assuming that you could "flash" the microprocessor thousands of
> times without degredation);  the chip would perform in a wider class
> of environments.

The code used to run the transmeta chip is analogous to the masks used
to produce other chips.

The difference between "software" and "firmware" (and the transmeta code
most closely resembles firmware) is that software is typically
ephemeral, while firmware is much more solid. There is no real use for
firmware, outside of the specific task for which it was created.

I can see your point about it all being software, and I assume you are
trying to challenge the notion of open source with it, however, firmware
is different. I can't quite articulate the exact difference (to be
honest, I never contemplated the philosophical differences).

I guess the difference is, although subtle, is that firmware constitutes
a physical device, one can not share it and still have it.

--
Mohawk Software
Windows 95, Windows NT, UNIX, Linux. Applications, drivers, support.
Visit http://www.mohawksoft.com

 
 
 

If open-source software is so much cooler, why isn't Transmeta getting it?

Post by Craig Kelle » Sun, 31 Dec 1899 09:00:00






> > > > http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/00/02/14/000214opmetcalfe.xml

> > > > History shows... history repeats itself. Independents get big and then
> > > > vilified. MS was one small and loved, now big=bad. Linus gets a taste of
> > > > some cash...

> > > Interestingly enough, I find the writer abhorrent. Confusing hardware
> > > and software is the sign of true ignorance. In hardware, the object is
> > > to sell physical devices. To sell physical devices, one must protect the
> > > manufacturing process. In software, in the end, all one sells is a
> > > service. Like it of not this is the truth. No one can sell a "License"
> > > to use software unless there is a promise of some kind of support. ISV's
> > > live and die by this. (Except, perhaps, those of monopolistic
> > > tendencies)

> > > Trying to characterize the market forces of software as you would
> > > hardware, or vice versa, is the sign of someone in need of a clue.

> > > Open source software is important for the software industry. Chip masks
> > > are not analogous.

> > While Metcalf does commit quite a few errors, I feel that he is
> > correct in saying that the morphing code should be free software.
> > Wasn't it Linus himself that said "The Crusoe is a microprocessor done
> > completely in software"?  Redefining software to be "chip masks" is
> > just hairsplitting.

> Not at all.

> > If the tools and speicifications were free, you'd see Transmeta chips
> > "emulating" everything from the tried-and-true x86 all the way to
> > 700Mhz Z-80 or 6502s.  Cool things like that well *never* be done by
> > Transmeta themselves because they'd never make money on it.  I'm sure
> > the AROS team (www.aros.org) would love to implement a 68k version
> > (heck, they could emulate some of the custom hardware too..); then
> > they may just be able to make it binary-compatible instead of simply
> > source-compatible.

> Transmeta is a hardware company. The are producing a physical device,
> they make income from selling physical devices.

Like, say, Creative or Nvidia?

- Show quoted text -

Quote:> > It is software.  Software should be open-sourced to maximize it's
> > potential.  People would buy more Transmeta chips if they could do
> > this (assuming that you could "flash" the microprocessor thousands of
> > times without degredation);  the chip would perform in a wider class
> > of environments.

> The code used to run the transmeta chip is analogous to the masks used
> to produce other chips.

> The difference between "software" and "firmware" (and the transmeta code
> most closely resembles firmware) is that software is typically
> ephemeral, while firmware is much more solid. There is no real use for
> firmware, outside of the specific task for which it was created.

> I can see your point about it all being software, and I assume you are
> trying to challenge the notion of open source with it, however, firmware
> is different. I can't quite articulate the exact difference (to be
> honest, I never contemplated the philosophical differences).

> I guess the difference is, although subtle, is that firmware constitutes
> a physical device, one can not share it and still have it.

Sure you can.

If I were to write a 6502c morph for a Transmeta chip, I could give it
away and still have it.

And I would still have needed to buy a physical chip, as would
everyone else that wanted to use my morphing code.

It is software, pure and simple.

--
The wheel is turning but the hamster is dead.