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    SubjectRe: Intel also needs convincing on firmware licensing.

    Just one statement (below)...

    Gene Heskett wrote:
    > On Wednesday 27 October 2004 22:25, Han Boetes wrote:
    >>The people from the OpenBSD project are currently lobbying to get
    >>the firmware for Intel wireless chipsets under a license suitable
    >>for Open Source.
    >>Since this will not only benefit BSD but also the Linux Project (and
    >>even Intel) I would like to mention the URL here for people who want
    >>to help writing to Intel.
    > Please be aware that for the so-called "software radios"
    > chips/chipsets, the FCC, and other similar regulating bodies in other
    > countries has made access to the data quite restrictive in an attempt
    > to keep the less ruly among us from putting them on frequencies they
    > aren't authorized to use, or to set the power levels above whats
    > allowed. These restrictions can vary from governing body to
    > governing body so the software is generally supplied according to
    > where the chipset is being shipped. The potential for mischief, and
    > legal/monetary reprecussions is sufficiently great that I have
    > serious doubts that Intel will budge from their current position
    > unless we can prove, beyond any doubt, that the regulatory
    > limitations imposed will not be violated.
    > Since open source, where anyone who can read the code can see exactly
    > what the limits are, and 'adjust to suit', virtually guarantees
    > miss-use, sooner if not later, for no other reason than its human
    > nature to experiment, Intel/moto/etc therefore has very good reasons
    > to treat its chip<->software interface as highly secret &
    > proprietary.
    To own a gun (in USA at least) is legal and easy.
    To use it is your choice.
    It may be illegel at times, but you still can (legally) have one.

    > Thats not saying that they may at some point furnish a 'filter' that
    > presents the rest of the world with a usable API to control it, but
    > the filter will see to it that attempted illegal settings are
    > ignored. The only way I can see that actually working is to actually
    > put that filter inside the chip, customized for the locale its being
    > shipped to. The radio control portion of the chip itself wouldn't
    > even be bonded out to external world pins or bga contacts, just the
    > port of the filter that the outside world talks to.
    > I'd rather doubt they want to make 20 to 40 different filtered
    > versions of the same chipset just to satisfy TPTB in some 3rd world
    > country thats less than 1% of the total sales. Even the relatively
    > dense market where Han lives is probably less than 5% of the total
    > for a popular chipset.
    > I'm a broadcast engineer who has been dealing at times with the FCC
    > for over 40 years, so you could say I'm biased. But thats not real
    > bias, its just from being fairly familiar with the regulatory
    > territory.
    > I'd like to see an open source solution to this problem myself, but
    > just because its open source we are asking for, with the attendent
    > liabilities that implies, I would not hold my breath till it happens.
    > If you do, you'll probably be talking to the rest of the world through
    > a Ouija board.

    Just stirring the soup you see,

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