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back to article Linus Torvalds drops F-bomb on NVIDIA

Linus Torvalds has exhorted GPU-maker NVIDIA to indulge in sexual intercourse with itself, and angrily raised his middle finger to the company to re-enforce the suggestion. Torvalds' “remarks” were made last week during a live interview at Finland's Aalto Center for Entrepreneurship. After the interview, Torvalds took questions …

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Megaphone

What has to be said has to be said.

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Anonymous Coward

So when a closed-source person swears it's unprofessional and laughable but when a FOSS person does the same they're Freeing The World™?

Not in my book.

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WTF?

Never read your book.

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@AC

Depends on the situation really dunnit.

If Steve * (yeah ok, if Jobs did it it'd be newsworthy for a different reason) were to swear at NVIDIA for the same reason, most would probably agree.

If any of them walk on stage and shout {INSERT OS} is the dog's fucking bollocks then yes it'd be unprofessional and laughable.

The thing about swearing, is it's just language. Just like every other word, phrase or sentence, there are times when it's appropriate and times when it isn't. Given the NVIDIA use Linux but flatly refuse to help provide GPU support, I'd say it's a reasonable comment.

Swearing is only offensive when you say it to/near the wrong person

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @AC

"If Steve * (yeah ok, if Jobs did it it'd be newsworthy for a different reason) were to swear at NVIDIA for the same reason, most would probably agree."

Many here didn't when he sweared at Adobe.

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FAIL

Re: @AC

Nvidia DO provide GPU support on Linux, they just don't open source their driver. Their driver is and has been one of the most stable parts of Linux for the last 10 years. ATI's and Intel's drivers are very flakey, and open source alternatives are slow and buggy.

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Linux

Re: @AC

"Nvidia DO provide GPU support on Linux" is true. The rest of your statement, sir, is complete bollocks.

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Linux

Re: @AC

What you say used to be true. Not since shortly after AMD bought out ATI have ATI's Linux drivers been flaky, however. One of the first things AMD with ATI did was massively improve their Linux drivers. I had an ATI card at the time and when that first AMD Catalyst driver came out the difference it made on my system was amazing. Last time I used an Nvidia card the OSS nv driver was far better than the official driver, and it's nowhere near good enough for gaming (yes, I game on Linux). As for Intel, I really can't comment on their drivers since I only settle for Intel graphics when I'm setting up headless systems without X.

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Facepalm

Re: {INSERT OS} is the dog's fucking bollocks

Isn't that a typical Ballmer presentation?

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Linux

Re: @AC

Posted Monday 18th June 2012 09:35 GMT

Anonymous Coward

Dear AC,

You !@#$% bugger, it is not sweared at , it is sworn at.

Get it right or you will be @$%!*&ed with the rough end of a Pineapple.

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Facepalm

Re: @AC

Many here didn't when he sweared at Adobe.

Some people are offended by bad English and some aren't.

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Re: @AC

Or Google...

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WTF?

Re: @AC

Not in my experience. Linux desktop with NVidia has *always* been painful

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WTF?

Re: @AC

Exactly. I have been stuck with ATI devices at work for years and have had nothing but issue after issue with them in Linux. Meanwhile at home I have had a slew of nothing but nVidia cards just because of their near flawless support for the Linux community. Thanks to them actually coming out with drivers for Linux on a regular basis, I've been running 3D accelerated X windows setup for at least 8 years now.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @AC

> Swearing is only offensive when you say it to/near the wrong person

Isn't the point of swearing to be offensive?

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Re: @AC

"Isn't the point of swearing to be offensive?"

No, it is often used for emphasis. I once heard someone very sincerely say to a girl: "I fucking love you" and they clearly meant it fully. She was not offended. :)

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Re: @AC

It's "Many here didn't when he swore at Adobe"

... 'sworn at' - perhaps he would have, after that nasty encounter with the Pineapple...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @mpup

mpup: I have had the exact same experience as you. Ati drivers are awful, intel are improving. Nvidia, although closed-source, have been reliable to use for years. I personally would not buy an Ati card nor a computer with an intel gfx card.

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Happy

Thumbs up for his wonderful gesture

Don't fuck with Linus.......

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Childcatcher

Re: Thumbs up for his wonderful gesture

Yes, it's nice to see Nvidia and its apologists unambiguously chastised for their Free Software hostility by the big man himself.

Maybe now we can start to cure the disease of pragmatism that afflicts so many Linux users. Until now, I'd assumed Linus was one of them, but apparently he's not as apathetic about the binary-blob problem as he seemed.

That's good news for Free Software supporters, who've become increasingly marginalised by pragmatic Linux users over the last few years, most of whom were formerly vindicated by Linus' apparent support for their pragmatic cause.

Now it's the pragmatists' turn to be marginalised.

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FAIL

Re: Thumbs up for his wonderful gesture

You, and people like you, are part of the problem, not the solution.

If you'd bothered to watch the rest of that video linked in the article, you'd have seen that Linus himself wasn't particularly fussed about the 'closed' nature of games consoles. He even went so far as to say that different rules applied in that sector.

Open Source is not a religion. It's just a form of distribution; nothing more, nothing less. It will not usurp every other form of distribution. Not everything that can be given away for free* should be.

* (Terms & Conditions Apply. Strings may be attached. See attached license. Unless you're giving stuff away to the Public Domain, in which case, no terms and conditions apply, and no strings, or licenses, are attached.)

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Linux

Re: Thumbs up for his wonderful gesture

Could you say pragmatic one more time and then head back over to the Windows fanboi forums?

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Re: Thumbs up for his wonderful gesture

Would appear that most of the people in that room don't fuck with anybody.

They need to get themselves girlfriends.

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Big Brother

Re: "the problem"

That depends on how you define "the problem".

There's a problem for consumers who are unceremoniously denied access to their own property, when the manufacturer arbitrarily withdraws "support" for the means necessary to use it - a problem virtually unheard of outside the computing market. That's merely a perfectly legitimate consumer issue, and has nothing to do with "religious fanaticism".

That's the true essence of Free Software: autonomy. Nvidia doesn't "give" its hardware away, it sells it. Free Software is not about "giving it away", its about ensuring autonomy from the vendor, so that consumers can continue to use their legally purchased property in spite of the vendor's machinations.

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Thumb Down

Great now we have a child

So now we have the creator of Linux kernel acting like a 13 year old child pulling the middle finger and saying things like F-U to corporate entities. Now it's all public and permanently imprinted on the net and on his life.

Like damn, he could have been a little less vulgar about it. He could have said the same thing without being a little kid about it. So now he gave Linux a reputation of being rude little sh*t when things bother them. Linus forgets that his actions reflect on the entire community, I wonder what RedHat, IBM, Intel ...etc think about this since they are some of the largest contributors to the kernel.

Thumbs down because I expected better.

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Re: Great now we have a child

Well many years of being polite doesn't seem to have helped. Maybe public castigation is exactly what what is needed here.

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Re: Great now we have a child

Linus for years has been tempered about this response to binary drivers. I think this move, whilst vulgar, is a very clever ploy. This is going to get so much wider press than a kernel developer complaining about closed source code. Shareholders, CEO's and higher level managers might actually think that nVidia has a bad reputation if this hits main stream news.

Linus is cutting through the corporate culture so someone might actually listen.

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Headmaster

Re: Great now we have a child

A more tempered response, such as hurling chairs around?

< ---- That's you, that is.

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Re: Great now we have a child

Oh stop being so bloody po-faced!

Sometimes being nice doesn't work, sometimes being Mr Nice simply gets you walked all over. So long as he doesn't keep doing things like this I think it's nice to see someone who's usually viewed as just another quiet geek showing a little "nerd rage" for a change.

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FAIL

Re: Great now we have a child

Linus doesn't have to be nice, he doesn't have to act like a kid to get his message across. There is a difference between telling someone to go fu*k themselves and saying the same thing without swearing.

He's done similar things with Gnome and SuSE but didn't get to this level. Sorry but you treat people the way you want to be treated.

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Re: Great now we have a child

". Shareholders, CEO's and higher level managers might actually think that nVidia has a bad reputation if this hits main stream news."

It would be true if they gave a crap about the Linux market.

No one cares about linux neckbeards.

Of course Nvidia don't give two craps about the linux market, because most games don't run on Linux anyway. And what to Nvidia sell ? high end graphics cards aimed at gaming. And a drive set that has to be redone every three months, to work with a buggy kernel, for 10 different forks of linux.

Boo hoo.... who bother with an OS that is 1% of the desktop market? Lots of money and f'ing about for now reward..

I am with nvidia on this one.

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Re: Great now we have a child

You must be a cave man because the market has been shifting away from desktops for quite some time now. The mobile and tablet market is where the game is and NVidia needs to get with it. I used to be a bit of an NVidia fan, but even the quality of their closed source drivers these days leaves a lot to be desired.

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Re: Great now we have a child

Yeah, we really all must remember that using expletives does nothing but destroy the message you're putting out. After all, the whole Live Aid thing was wiped out when Bob Geldof asked us to give him our f*$%ing money IIRC!

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Mushroom

Arrggghhhh!!!!

The Linux people have brought this on themselves. They have been allowing binary blobs (mostly drivers) into the code-base for years. The argument for this is, of course, that it allows Linux to acquire functionality that would otherwise be denied. While I can see the argument, the ultimate conclusion of this action is that you'll finally end up in the situation where more and more hardware manufacturers do the same thing, to the point where you don't have the source code for ANY of the drivers in your kernel! Which is a ridiculous situation.

I've recently been looking at putting together a Linux box for running MythTV. I very quickly found out that it's a non-trivial exercise getting the video to work. Apparently, Radeon chips are a non-starter which (many people agree) is a real shame because they have (arguably) much superior video post-processing capabilities compared to nVidia. the point is, we have here and now, a situation where critical bits of hardware will not work with Linux without the use of the respective blob. And the blobs are typically buggy, lack critical functionality, or fail to work for some other complex reason. And there is absolutely NOTHING you can do about it.

The BSDs have been campaigning for years to not allow blobs in. FreeBSD (I think) ended up relenting, but OpenBSD has stood their ground. And yes, you could point and laugh and say "oh, yes, but so-and-so doesn't work on openBSD", and you might be right, but at least they have all the code for ALL their drivers, which is a lot more than Linux can say (and by the way, OBSD has far better WiFi Support than Linux). OpenBSD dropped support for Adaptec disc driver chips some years ago because after many frustrating years of trying to get enough info out of them just so a driver could be written, they finally lost patience and decided it wasn't worth it. On the other hand, OBSD has had some major successes getting h/w manufacturers to release the required info. If Linux took the same tack, then by now there would be some very big players video / ethernet / wifi manufacturers getting their fingers out and releasing this sort of info because the cost to them if they don't is loss of sales.

Many people have been saying for years that there should be a licensing clause in the Linux OS to prevent blob inclusion (but then again, this should not be needed - it's Linux people's short-sightedness and impatience that is the problem). And now that Linux is becoming much more important, we're in a mess that we can not be able to get out of, and are being held to ransom.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Great now we have a child

There are plenty of stories of Bill Gates or Steve Jobs going absolutely bat shit crazy going around. Bill Gates going ape privately about the PS3 not using DirectX, and Steve Jobs vowing thermonuclear war vs Android, again privately. Linux just made sure his comments were open sourced.

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Mushroom

Re: Great now we have a child

Firstly the word is "Fuck" not "F_". I don't understand self-censorship when all it does is just draw attention to the fact that a word is supposed to be "bad" when most people just don't see it as a big deal. It's like you want there to be swearing and offense by making the word special.

Secondly, why shouldn't Linus do this. It's hardly "acting like a 13 year old child". It's not random desire to insult. I specifically have bought my last three graphics cards from AMD neé ATI because AMD did what they could to provide extensive documentation for their chips and assist with open source. Perfect? No, because there are a few components that they are not legally allowed to provide the information for though they are working on this last I heard. But more willing and supportive of Open Source than NVIDIA? Fuck yes!

As to your shock at this, you plainly haven't seen many talks by Linus. I remember a talk on version control systems he gave some years ago where he opened by saying anyone who disagreed with him was "ugly and stupid". Got a good laugh, by the way. He's the Bill Hicks of the Open Source movement. And no, I don't think he reflects badly on the Open Source movement.

You are upset because "his action reflect on the entire community"? Do you even know who Linus Torvalds is and how important he has been to the Open Source community. His "actions" can't really be measured on their effect on the O/S community. If this bothers you, you must really dislike Hans Reiser! ;)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Great now we have a child

What a surprise, a site full of arrogant antisocial Linux-loving IT nerds think it's to be applauded when a so called professional acts like the stereotype they embody in favour of Linux.

I bet if he'd been a MS/Oracle/Apple/Google person making similarly crude complaints the votes on these posts would be directly reversed.

The funniest (or saddest) thing is you sad sacks probably think you are unbiased and logical, imagining yourselves like some combination of Spock and Dr. House. In reality it's more like Sheldon Cooper.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Great now we have a child

> 1% of the desktop

What part of "nvidia tries to sell chips chips into the Android market" are you struggling with?

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@h4rm0ny (was: Re: Great now we have a child)

If I posted that, I'd probably get 60 or 70 thumbs down.

People really don't get the point of FOSS.

Carry on, Compadre :-)

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Re: Great now we have a child

Combat Wombat wrote: "Of course Nvidia don't give two craps about the linux market, because most games don't run on Linux anyway ... Boo hoo.... who bother with an OS that is 1% of the desktop market? Lots of money and f'ing about for now reward..I am with nvidia on this one"

Graphics cards are now doing more than just high-end gaming. It's still in its infancy but CUDA, OpenCL... For some application spaces it's useful to have a high-end graphics card even if you don't game. And that application space is growing through a big growth at the moment. And who knows more about this than most userbases? The Linux userbase which is primarily made up of technically competent people.

Also, that "1% of the market" that you refer to has an influence beyond what you'd expect, being made up of very technical people who advise and probably buy more than most non-technical people. Also, if you as a CEO said to your shareholders: "I'm not going to bother with that - it's only 1% of our $600million annual business, so merely $6million a year I can't be bothered with", you would be sacked. Sacked for your behaviour and most definitely sacked for your attitude.

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LDS
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Re: Great now we have a child

LOL! You don't know anything about the high-end gaming market. People using more than one video cards with multiple monitors and tons of hardware - including dedicated controls. They aren't moving to mobile or tablets anytime soon to play a simple game using fingers like two-years old. And those systems don't run Linux .

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Arrggghhhh!!!!

At least with Linux I can relatively safely buy a discounted mass market PC where the Microsoft tax is cheaper than the cost of researching and assembling or purchasing dedicated hardware and expect it to install and run Linux without issues. Keeping anti-Linux manufacturers like Nvidia away from my purchasing money (and purchases I recommend to friends, family and community for Linux and non Linux purposes) isn't too difficult given that enough mass PC assemblers say what they use at that level. With an OS where manufacturer blobs are not supported and having to stick with a supported hardware list, I'd probably have to get a specialist to build the system for me.

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Facepalm

Re: Great now we have a child

He already did this with his rant about CUPS needing root and other things..... (And I'm not even sure it does once its setup).

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Re: Great now we have a child

@AC - 08:32

You are selectively reading. Linus has openly praised people when he thought their work was good. He has also openly castigated people when he thought their work was poor.

What is it about honesty that you don't like?

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Re: Arrggghhhh!!!!

Whats the size comparison of usage of Linux against the BSD's?

When I started with linux, I came from a windows system where everything worked, most of the time (unbelievable for some, I know!).

I tried out nouveau a few years ago and it was terrible. It'd kernel panic and die pretty much every boot. If you'd told me "well you can't have the nvidia binary drivers" then I'd of gone back to windows.

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FAIL

@Combat Wombat

You didn't read/listen did you? Nvidia want to sell chips to Android manufacturers. Which kernel does Android use again?

Linux is used everywhere from TVs to phones, Hollywood renderfarms and GPU-based supercomputing. Nvidia drivers are needed by others than Linux desktop gamers, wake up.

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Re: Arrggghhhh!!!!

Nvidia does provide "manufacturer blobs", I'm not sure how that makes it anti-Linux.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Great now we have a child

Bollocks!

Using expletives is part of our language, and it's there for a purpose - to add emphasis (unless it s along the lines of "I was fucking walking down the fucking road and this fucking fucker says "OI! where the fuck you fucking going?"").

Torvalds' comments were a clear expression of his annoyance with nVidia, and his choice of words carried this emotion to us.

(BTW you're talking crap about Live Aid "being wiped out").

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Re: Great now we have a child

"After all, the whole Live Aid thing was wiped out when Bob Geldof asked us to give him our f*$%ing money IIRC!"

Without taking a side in the argument, and my own penchant for cursing notwithstanding, Geldof never actually said that. If you watch the clip back, he actually says "fuck the address", then goes on to the "give us the money" rant.

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