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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] [Dev] EOMA68 and freedom in digital technology

From: Josh Branning
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] [Dev] EOMA68 and freedom in digital technology
Date: Wed, 14 Sep 2016 10:07:21 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux i686; rv:38.0) Gecko/20100101 Icedove/38.8.0

On 14/09/16 01:07, Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton wrote:
crowd-funded eco-conscious hardware:

On Sat, Sep 10, 2016 at 9:07 PM, Josh Branning <> wrote:
On 10/09/16 20:38, Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton wrote:

See what Olimex has been doing for years then.

   you're aware that olimex operates as a criminal cartel, from shipping
GPL-violating A10 bootloaders and kernels provided by Allwinner, back
around 2011/2012?   you're also aware that with the sole exception of
the olimex laptop's PCBs the only thing that they provide is
auto-generated PDFs *from* the schematics source code... not the
actual schematics and certainly not the PCB design files?

I think this is a little unfair to Olimex and is at least partially untrue.
For instance, schematics and pcb files CAN be found, for most of their
boards. [1]

  yes - you're catching up (three people kindly pointed this out)

Unlike your boards, which give a 404 forbidden message when trying to access
the server. [2] Hopefully this is something you can correct.

  it has.  explained also in other posts since you replied to this.

Though I can see that the advantage over the Olimex boards is that you ship
with a libre operating system from the start.

  which gives you a clear message: i will *not* compromise on software
freedom for the purposes of profit maximisation.  actually it's more
specific than that: i will NOT put designs into people's hands when i
know that they will become distressed as a result (due to viruses
emptying their bank accounts, or being forced to spend money on
throwing away perfectly good hardware due to software driver
incompatibility and so on).

In regards to the A64 (used in the Olimex laptop), /mainline/ u-boot, from
the wiki [3]:

  u-boot is not the early bootloader.  the early bootloader is proprietary.

'   Basic support for the A64 SoC has been been merged into 2016.05-rc1.
This covers UART, MMC and required GPIOs and clocks, but no Ethernet or USB
yet. Also as there is no information on the DRAM controller so far, the SPL
support is not enabled, so boot0 is required at the moment to get U-Boot

  ... and is that early bootloader, boot0, proprietary or not, yes or no?

Also, I think that the Olimex laptop has not yet been released, so that
gives developers time to build more support, before they start selling.

  meanwhile, the opportunity has been totally lost, to put a financial
"foot down" (just as with NextThingCo did with Allwinner over the R8)
i.e. to say "no, allwinner, we will *not* place an order for 50,000
units with you *UNTIL* you give us the full source code including the
full source code of the early bootloader, boot0"

  now the sunxi community is expected to pick up the pieces - unpaid -
and to clean up allwinner's mess.  oh, but worse than that, the team
behind the Allwinner A64 think it's *OKAY* to consider boot0 to be

  just because pine64 and olimex took your money instead of setting
software freedom as a first priority.

  tell me: how is that okay?  if you *really think* it is okay, explain how.


Getting rid of boot0 is not far away:;a=tree;f=board/sunxi;h=6419936f8b204d43c146ff5d8c88d1b0484fdcae;hb=refs/heads/next

I'm sure, and there is some evidence that Olimex puts pressure as it is on Allwinner to release their code and stop ignoring GPL licensing conditions.

You say Olimex made a GPL-violation and then basically made the fool of you 'in-front of 20,000 people', but they seem otherwise. [1]

According to them, you were complaining that they hadn't released the source early enough, because they hadn't written a tutorial of how to build as soon as they released the images. Though I guess it is unclear as to what actually happened back then. ( is down).

Either way, it doesn't really matter much, I appreciate what you're doing, making another libre computer, and for that I am grateful. I'm also pleased you posted the schematics and pcb files as you said you would.

Thanks again,



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