AMD should support (financially) Linux UX/UI Developers and Open-Source App Developers Directly

(Originally this was supposed to be a comment on "The Tek 0164", but after a user's suggestion I made it a blog post. So here it is. Enjoy.)

TL;DR - Read the title, walk away feeling satisfied you know something despite learning nothing for not reading the post.

TL;DR of the TL;DR - Don't be lazy, read the post.

TL;DR of the TL;DR of the TL;DR - Sarcasm!

Depends on how much traction SteamOS gets. We've seen a lot of movement from Indie game devs towards releasing games on Linux. And we've also seen quite a few older games being ported to Linux. I've also seen a lot of newer (not AAA) titles being released on Linux (along with Windows, and occasionally consoles as well).

The issue really is market share. Nvidia puts all their eggs with whoever has the biggest market share, and right now that's Windows. But that means once that big market share becomes much more divided, AMD would have the software and hardware upper hand, because they'd have more experience with Linux, Linus Torvalds would be more than motivated to unlock even more power from AMD on the kernel level, and we could even see more improvements coming from the Open Source community once Linux has a significant market share (say, 30% or more of online game sales being made on Linux-enabled devices).

Game play time doesn't matter. Companies care about sales, not how much time the player spends on their game (unless it's an MMO game, since activity from players would definitely affect sales, as it has with WoW and GW2, for example).

Nvidia will only move towards making their hardware and software work properly on Linux once it would hurt them more financially to ignore Linux than it would benefit them from reinvesting that money into Windows development (for drivers, software, installation, usability, UI, UX, etc).

The thing is, Nvidia doesn't give two s**ts about the user or the player. Nvidia is about profit, pure and simple. They never cared about Linux, they care about money. They don't care about OpenCL or OpenCompute unless it helps them sell more GPUs (and that's why AMD has had the upper hand in those areas). The BitCoin craze was a big demonstration of that. Adobe using OpenCL for the hardware acceleration of Photoshop and Creative Cloud is also another example of this. Companies don't like being hostages to a closed standard by a single company, since that means said company could at any moment abandon development of said standard or cease to develop products for it. If Nvidia did that with CUDA (but they wouldn't), Adobe would have lost millions of dollars in software development of CUDA-specific code. Adobe chose OpenCL because an open standard gives them (and their users) hardware flexibility of choice, allowing their clients (individuals and companies) to have near-adequate performance on Nvidia GPUs, but also have excellent performance on AMD GPUs, instead of great performance on Nvidia GPUs and no performance/acceleration from AMD GPUs. That inspires more confidence from clients and a better, more enjoyable experience, which in turns increases sales (and decreases complaints and bad reviews from users, also driving up sales).

Nvidia is all about money, that's why they make more money than AMD. AMD is about creating a better future; they helped develop DockPort (you should check it out - think of USB 3.1 + 100W power, side by side with DisplayPort 1.3, over a single cable sending the signals in a way similar to PCIe). AMD wants to make a better future, one that's inclusive, and they're playing the market for the long game by making sure they can compete in all arenas - Windows, Linux, ARM, etc.

AMD knows that being able to have the option to change where and how they compete and against whom is a very important thing in a market as subject to abrupt change as the hardware and software industries are. Nvidia doesn't know that, and has put all their eggs into a few big baskets: Windows, CUDA and PhysX. To an extent the server space is also somewhere they're competing in, but not really. The monitor space with G-Sync is interesting, but we'll have to wait for it - same with their GRID streaming service.

If there's a big change in the game soon that drives people away from Windows, we're going to see AMD pounce on that opportunity like a Hollywood producer on the rights to a script of "FernGully, The Prequel: The Before Story you never cared about, now with more gimmicky CGI than you can shake a stick at". AMD is ready for abrupt change in such a volatile market. Nvidia isn't. AMD has other markets it can tap into if the market share changes. And they're willing to sell products with lower profit margins (even in business-to-business sales), which is why they got big contracts like XBox One, WiiU, and PS4.

Nvidia can't compete with that. As a result, fewer AAA games that are cross-platform are coming out with PhysX support - the lower number of titles since 2010 (only 4): Warframe(68/100 on Metacritic), Daylight (50/100 on Metacritic), Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel (75/100 on Metacritic, only with PhysX support because it's basically BL2 redone, and BL2 had PhysX), Lords of the Fallen (73/100 on Metacritic) - and none of those games were anything special, to be honest. That means that only mediocre games included PhysX in 2014, even after Nvidia announced they would allow PhysX to work on the Xbox One and PS4. Meaning that PhysX is looking to be in bad shape. [1]

Nvidia does have some cool games that might come out with PhysX support in the future. EverQuest Next, Batman: Arkham Knight, Star Citizen, Project CARS, and The Witcher 3 are just a few on the list (but those are the only big releases; the rest is just fodder for increasing the number size in 2015 for the marketing team's commercials). [2]

AMD has given their clients, both corporate and individuals, flexibility to choose which hardware they want to buy. That gave them confidence and flexibility if they chose to buy something else later. Nvidia didn't to that. AMD gave their clients the choice of OS, CPU, GPU, or everything else in between, something that neither Intel nor Nvidia has been able to do. AMD is ready for whatever change might occur. Nvidia is still depending greatly on Windows, and while that's their strength, it's also their crutch. It's up to AMD to make the most out of this by helping Linus Torvalds and the Open-Source community. For AMD, improving Linux and OpenSource is more than just part of their corporate philosophy of choice and flexibility - it also means undermining the very foundation of their biggest hardware competitors, Intel and Nvidia. And AMD can capitalize on this, but only if their pounce on that opportunity while it still exists. Giving Nvidia and Intel time to adapt and adjust is bad business for AMD, and I sincerely hope AMD makes the smart move by doing even more to make the user transition from Windows to Linux even easier and smoother, and hopefully offering some financial support for the development Open Source versions of essential (read: Adobe Creative Cloud, foobar2000, or 1st World Problems) programs that aren't yet available on Linux. Once people can make the switch and the market share changes, suddenly developers will have to make a choice. And if one area of the market share is continuously growing, while the other is shrinking, you can bet it'll make software and game developers consider Linux as a good option. As more software and games get published on Linux because of Market Share, the more we'll see even more users migrate over.

It's this vicious cycle which has kept users locked in the Windows ecosystem. But if the grass is greener on the other side, and people can show that to Windows users, and also give them for free the OS and programs they want, convenience and cost will make Windows irrelevant. By not having to use Internet Explorer, reset your computer when you get updates, or deal with any of Window's multiple issues, convenience, cost and simplicity can win over users.

Linus Torvalds was also talking about the distributions he like, and how he no longer uses Debian, Fedora or Ubuntu, because he has to take care of the PCs in his house. And when his [Linus Torvalds'] daughter called him saying she needed the administrator password to print a document, he no longer could recommend those distributions to anyone. I think he's on to something here: the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) are the most essential things for the user, just like how gameplay is the most important thing for a gamer, since that's the thing both of them will be doing when interacting with their software. If that doesn't deliver a good experience, or if it gets in the way of the user (or player), they'll pick the best (or least worst?) option they can. If AMD can support app developers and also support Linux UI/UX developers to make the experience of installing and using Linux much simpler for the user, we could see a big shift. But AMD would also have to use marketing to let user's know that the grass is greener on the other side.

So there is hope for Linux and AMD. And AMD has the ability to undermine their competition by strengthening the main competitor (Linux) of the crutch (Windows) which their competitors rely on most. That could be AMD's next big play. I can't wait to see how this unfolds.


UPDATE: Because monitor scaler manufacturers aren't allow to make G-Sync, since it isn't an Open Standard (nor an Industry Standard), monitor scaler manufacturers (which are present in pretty much any desktop monitor you can buy that isn't G-Sync) have "pledged their allegiance" to Adaptive-Sync (DisplayPort's version of AMD's FreeSync). [3] AMD has made Nvidia's big hype into an industry standard, making Nvidia's spending on marketing suddenly much less valuable, as well as taking away much of the ROI (Return on Investment) that would have come from the money spend on the R&D (Research and Development) of G-Sync.

Also, it seems many monitor scaler manufacturers will just need a simple firmware update on their scalers in order to support AdaptiveSync (DisplayPort 1.2a's implementation of variable refresh rates, or AMD's FreeSync). [4] This means many monitors out there right now, if it were possible to easily update the firmware of the monitor, could be freely converted to AdaptiveSync monitors (as long as they have a DisplayPort connector on them). You can't get cheaper than a free firmware update, as opposed to paying an extra 100$ (or so) dollars for G-Sync. Money you could spend on a better AMD GPU, like going from an R9 280X (around 230$) to an R9 290 with aftermarket heatsink (around 330$).

UPDATE (2) : While I've said AMD should support app developers directly, there are some apps which I don't think AMD would be able to support. An Open-Source competitor to Adobe CreativeCloud would be against their best interests, since Adobe's adoption of OpenCL/OpenCompute is huge - it enables them to get far more hardware sales and profits, as well as helping bring Adobe away from the whole proprietary nonsense of CUDA.

Another point is that the list of apps which AMD should support (financially) are:

LibreOffice - Fund better compatibility, so switching over is easier. Also add new features, like better image background placement, scaling, positioning, filters, etc. Closer similarity to PDF format and what's shown on-screen. Maybe add some extra features specific to book writers, like different text alignment options, different font size options (like small capitals, where the size of the small capitals is variable rather than fixed, so many different types of fonts can look good too). Adding better hardware acceleration for LibreDraw could also help.

Firefox - Fund better hardware (GPU) acceleration on Linux using OpenCL/OpenCompute, so there's better performance, and also fund better CPU threaded optimization (removing single-threaded bottlenecks wherever possible).

Filesystems for Linux - Adding better ECC/Parity/Checksum of files (without introducing much read/write latency) could be very important. Having corrupted files because of hard drive problems or unexpected shutdown can be a huge frustration on Linux, and if that makes the user's experience with Linux better, more power to them. (This is one advantage ZFS has over ext4.) Also, adding functionality that allows only certain files (like system-critical and kernel files) within the filesystem to have error-checking (rather than an all-or-none approach) could save space and read/write time. We also need Integrated LVM (Logical Volume Management) so partitions don't have to be used on non-UEFI devices, but it could also allow for better caching to happen on-the-fly. Having a file change log that doesn't destroy previous data would also be amazing - that way a file could be rolled back if/when needed, and file corruptions wouldn't be the end of the world. (Also, having a file system that could have multiple copies of system-critical files and the kernel could also save people's bacon in case of data corruption on one area of a hard drive, or due to NAND cell damage on an SSD. It would increase reliability. Not only multiple copies on a single partition, but also on multiple storage devices.)

Automatic Caching for Linux - Having RAM and SSD Caching happen automatically could be a big performance increase for Linux. It could also save on energy consumption on mobile devices, such as laptops, Intel tablets and smartphones, because if a device has more RAM than it's using, being able to read from RAM or an SSD rather than the HDD could decrease energy consumption. Having Linux lead the mobile industry with smart energy saving through software caching could be huge, and being able to take Linux to the mobile computer/tablet arena with Intel's new Tablet/PC hybrids (as shown in CES '15) could be a great way for people to be introduced to a better online experience. This would require better prediction of what the user might use, based on what programs the user uses, how often, when they're used, and the benchmark data of the random reads and sequential reads of the storage devices they use (for example, where is it best to store file X? SSD or HDD? K-brand SSD, or I-brand SSD?).

Better music players - foobar2000 is a great music player for Windows, but AMD could bring that to Linux as well. AMD's TrueAudio wouldn't be needed for a standard music player, but using VR and TrueAudio, we could see AMD make listening to classic music in a concert hall something that's enabled using an Oculus Rift, for example. That could make the music listening experience much more interesting, where someone isn't just listening to music in the background, but enjoying it in a virtual world with physics-enabled acoustics for greater realism. AMD has the technology, they just have to use it and support developers.

Better image and video editing software - AMD could create "bounties" for certain improvements they'd like done on GIMP, like more effects, different filters, extra plug-ins. While it wouldn't compete toe-to-toe with Adobe Creative Cloud, it could definitely help get more people moving to Linux. As for video editing software, support LightWorks is all AMD needs to do. Find what's missing from Sony Vegas and other professional video editing software, add "bounties" (read: cash rewards to the first person who publishes complete open-source code to add the desired functionality in, much like how security vulnerability research is done by Google).

UI / UX - Linux could use an overhaul, including their desktops. Having something that looks and feels familiar to the Apple and Windows desktops is important, and while KDE and GNOME have improved a lot, they still aren't quite up to the same level of polish or familiarity that Windows and Apple have on their desktops. So why not change that? Make it simple, intuitive, and fast! LibreOffice has some great guidelines [5], and I think Linux should learn from them (even Linus Torvalds mentioned these, and how some distros seemed to blame the user for not using the software right, which he really didn't like).

While command-line mode may be great for veterans who know what they're doing, the simple truth is that most user's don't. And they need a UI that's simple enough for them to grasp, use and like. The UX (User Experience) needs to not be an unpleasant one, so fixing problems like requiring the administrator password to print can't keep on happening. The usage of Linux needs to be simple, for simple-minded users, so the UX and UI should reflect that. But that doesn't mean Linux can't have an "Uber-mode" or other distros that aren't meant for advanced users. Linux just needs an "entry-level distro" with a catchy name that your Average Joe can remember (like iOS, Android, Windows, etc), a simple interface, and something that's powerful enough to take care of work, simple but so much that it gets in the user's way, and slim (read: minimalistic and light on RAM, CPU, GPU) so that it can use the performance on things the user actually cares about (because let's face it, when's the last time you heard your average user complain about the kernel's performance or kernal features rather than a slow-loading app?).

(Having a bright, simple UI that focuses on readability that's also polished, like Apple's could help make the OS seem more friendly to users. Having the UI also avoid being too flashy could help make it more attractive to business owners, and also make it perform better on legacy hardware, so long as it doesn't look outdated.)

Better online backup and service integration - Seagate and other companies have talked a lot about "the cloud" and having a "personal cloud". Why not add some type of service hosted by AMD that acts like a dynamic OpenDNS server to allow users to connect to their home NAS, of their service of choice (Dropbox, Mega, or whatever). It has to be simple, and something that just works, allowing them to set up a username, connect their devices, and then let them sync/backup as needed (with incremental backups, rather than full copies; the whole conservation of bandwidth thing).

Better included games - While Linux has several games, why not make the included ones better? It may seem small, but having something for the kids or the teenagers who visit could be an incentive for parents and grandparents to adopt the OS.

Better parental filters - Linux could greatly benefit from this. Having parental filters could make Linux go from the perception of being "super genius difficult" or "built in someone's basement" to a very friendly (and family-friendly!) ecosystem (like the perception people have of Apple or Nintendo). This could help increase OS adoption.

Better OS and driver installation experience, and updating experience - Linux needs a simpler installation experience, as Linus Torvalds did say once (infamously). He also said that he hadn't tried installing Debian or other distros in a long while, though. As a Windows user, I'm often frustrated when I can't find the correct driver to install (because it's buried in some website designed by a chinese person who wants to see the world burn, because they don't understand that plain text and links need to be in different colors!). I'd love to see an OS that identifies the controller and manufacturer, and then installs the proper drivers automatically (and updates them automatically too, downloading only the incremental changes from version to version rather than a whole copy of the installation file). I'd also like to have a better updating experience, since it majorly s*cks on Windows.

Better default apps - I think Linux could benefit from having better default apps within a distro. LibreOffice is a better office suite, and I think having it included by default would make distros better.

Faster Desktop Environments - KDE and GNOME are crazy fast. But AMD has some great hardware acceleration experience, and they know a thing or two about writing software to use it. So why not let the KDE, Gnome and Cinnamon team benefit from their expertise by lending them some of their programmers to help them improve the performance, and maybe allow them to make the graphics more beautiful and polished with the same performance as before, or better performance while looking the same.? AMD could only benefit from a stronger Linux, and Nvidia and Intel can only lose from a stronger Linux. It's a win-win, plus great publicity for AMD.

Professional applications for small and medium businesses - Payroll software, POS (point of sale) cash register software, contact information, groupware software (for collaborative work), group chat (VoIP, text, VR, telepresence), telecommute, etc. Linux could take over a large portion of the industry by offering small to medium business owners a simple to use set of tools. While it wouldn't be possible to have custom code for each and every business out there, having WYSIWYG editors with a drag-n-drop type interface could help business owners tailor a base software to their needs, and creating online tutorials (like on YouTube) that are professionally-made (and AMD should know something about video creation, with their FirePro cards and whatnot) could help improve adoption of Linux, since many business are dependent on those types of software. Also, having conversion software to convert old legacy data into other formats could also help.

AMD needs its own distro - There are many distros out there. Too many, actually. SteamOS is ready to show the world that Linux is ready for gaming. But AMD needs to show the world that Linux is ready for the desktop, at home and at work. Few companies will work on Linux until it has greater adoption, and for Linux to get there it needs help. AMD can create a distro to show the world how it's supposed to be done, by doing it right the first time. Only then can Linux take over the business workstation and the home desktop, currently dominated by Intel and Nvidia. If AMD takes off, neither Intel nor Nvidia can compete on Linux, so AMD would regain the performance crown once more, and not only that but have more experience on their software team, giving them a real leg up on their competition. And the increased sales of their hardware due to better performance AND being at a lower price than their competition could increase their profits, which could be further invested into funding Linux app development to further undermine their competition, but which could give them free publicity.


Make Linux Context-Aware, with Syncing possible - Users don't like to have to change how they do things just because they switch users. Having better synchronization could allow multiple devices to be synced in the same ecosystem. Apple has this with their iCloud, but why not allow Linux users to configure their own storage medium or service of choice (NAS as home, NAS at work, Dropbox, Mega) and let them sync their files. Having Linux be context-aware could allow personal files to be encrypted on certain devices by default (like on your smartphone or laptop), but not on others (like your workstation). It could also show or hide icons or programs from your desktop depending on what time of day it is, what day of the week it is, where you're connecting from, or which device you're connecting from.

If you're at home, connecting from your own laptop then you shouldn't have much of an issue having that poker program for Linux running. But if you're at work, or using the company's laptop, then not so much. Having Linux sync files depending on context is very nice. It paves the way for more Linux-based tablets, smartphones and other devices, but also for an Internet-of-Things ecosystem for Linux. The big concern is the setup and UI - Linux is perceived as complicated or difficult, so the setup and usage needs to be simple, and there needs to be a clear separation between basic and advanced settings and features.

Linux needs simple, professional, friendly tutorials on YouTube and social media - For Linux to become more accessible, it needs to be taught. While often people in the Linux community may frown on "holding the user's hand" through everything, that's something the user may end up liking. People don't want to tinker and experiment, at least not most people. Most people want something that works so they can go on with their lives, which is why most people don't program, mod their games or build their own PCs. We're a minority in the world, and while we're [the Tek and TekSyndicate users] awesome in our own way, we're not the typical user. Having a simple UI and UX is great, but there needs to be something to spread the word. Social media works great for that, and having video tutorials to help grandma or my aunt install Linux on their machines could help a lot.

There's no reason why Linux couldn't benefit from simple, professional, well-made, friendly tutorial videos. They could even be included in the distro, if using compressed audio, video (maybe video with transparency to conserve on data, and also to not occupy too much of the user's screen), and perhaps presentation software for text, images and button elements. Having an interactive presentation that works like a game tutorial with a friendly voice and simple, clear instructions/text could really help newcomers to pick things up faster. If tutorials can work well for some games, there's no reason it couldn't work for Linux too.

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AMD does sponsor open source development, not only do they have the open source driver developer for their GPU's on their payroll, but ATIC has also shifted all hardware and software development from AMD (a US company) to GF, even if nothing has changed and the people and the building in Dresden Germany are still the same as before. ATIC has reduced AMD to pretty much a sales unit, but the important stuff and new IP development goes on in other departments, for instance in the development of their ARM-based next-gen computing hardware, which of course, as it is based upon the designs of ARM Holdings UK, is open source by nature.

The face of open source is also changing, with an overhaul of the kernel that has been announced from 3.18 on to make the kernel lighter and more specifically optimized for ARM-devices, more kernel features that support Saas/Cloud environments, etc...


(For those curious: ATIC is "Advanced Technology Investment Company", and GF is GlobalFoundries.)

Hhmmm. Interesting.

ATIC bought off GlobalFoundries, the semiconductor manufacturer AMD loved to work with. I couldn't find anything that says that AMD is now owned with ATIC or has any relationship with ATIC other than GlobalFoundries on the Wiki of the three companies. Also, AMD does not seem to have any parent company, unlike GlobalFoundries whose parent company is ATIC.

This seems to suggest that while AMD may not control the lithography manufacturing facilities of their semiconductors, it does seem they design their chips (even if they're manufactured by other companies, like TSMC or GlobalFoundries).

So how does ATIC affect the hardware and software development of AMD now? I can understand that ATIC spun off GlobalFoundries from AMD, and that they no longer control the lithography process, but doesn't AMD still control the silicon designs of their GPUs and CPUs, and don't they still control internal departments of their own company?

Also, looking at the current majority shareholders of AMD reveals that ATIC is not among them. Link:

Besides that, very nice comment. (I'm going to try to find some examples of AMD funding Open Source software development. Things like DisplayPort and AdaptiveSync aren't really software, though, and don't help Linux that much directly.)

I didn't know that 3.18 included that stuff. Seems they're really improving quickly. =)

Will the Linux kernel fork between x86-64 and ARM (in regards to platform-specific code optimizatrions), or will it remain unified? Or will there be a big "IF ARM ELSE x86-64" (not real code, you get the idea) in the middle of the code at compilation time, depending on whether it's being compiled for x86-64 or ARM?


AMD does support the Open-Source Community. They're an active member in support of OpenCL, and their September Catalyst driver added support for OpenCL 2.0, allowing for programs to run better on heterogeneous systems (meaning CPUs, GPUs, DSPs and FPGAs can work better together rather than separately on the same task using shared virtualized memory).

While AMD does support OpenGL, AMD does not yet support OpenGL 4.5 on (which has similar functionality to Mantle and DirectX 12) on any of their GPUs yet. They do, however, plan to give the Khronos Group (which develops OpenCL and OpenGL) full access with no restrictions and/or conditions to Mantle to use as their base for OpenGL NG (the next generation of OpenGL).

(The Khronos Group is a not-for-profit group. AMD's affiliation to the Khronos Group is that they're listed as a Promoter, which "act as the "Board of Directors" to set the direction of the Group, with final specification ratification voting rights.")

AMD does support coreboot, a software project aimed at replacing proprietary BIOS firmware with one that is much more minimalistic (so there's some performance gains to be had). That being said, there are very few motherboards which they support. Also, many of the motherboards listed for desktop use are Pentium II, Pentium III, Athlon 64, FX and X2, and there's a single LGA 1155 board listed, with hardly any of the motherboards listed with "Last Known Good". coreboot is GPLv2, therefore OpenSource. [1]

AMD's Core Math Library is still in active development, and it's used for scientific, engineering and academic research and simulations, along with weather simulations, fluid dynamics, financial data analysis, oil and gas applications and more. (Why has AMD never tried to make this an Open-Source competitor for PhysX that's free, Open-Source, and runs on OpenCL/OpenCompute? They're missing a huge opportunity.) AMD's Core Math Library does leverage the OpenSource clMath library, but I couldn't find information as to whether or not AMD's Core Math Library is in fact Open-Source. [2]

AMD's CodeXL continues in active development and is a free. It is aimed at being a free GPU debugger, GPU profiler, CPU profiler, and static OpenCL kernel analyzer. There is little to no information about which license it is under either on Wikipedia or on their own website, so I could not figure out if it's OpenSource.

AMD teams did add OpenCL acceleration to FFMPEG [3].

AMD also is directly involved in GNU [3].

AMD has also said on their page that "AMD contributes to the core Linux Kernel by providing enablement for AMD processors" (let me put on my cynic's hat for this) means that they're transparent about their processor designs to help Linux coders optimize them better, and they're more transparent about the software as well. (My interpretation of this: Meaning they don't actively help code anything, they just grant access to code and designs. So... AMD is passive in development, but doesn't block access, implying other companies could be doing just that.)

Conclusion: Other than coreboot, GNU, adding OpenCL support to FFMPEG and The Khronos Group-related projects (like OpenCL and OpenGL), I didn't find anything to suggest that AMD is investing in any active OpenSource projects directly, nor supporting any OpenSource app developers (or Linux developers) financially in any way (other than those previously mentioned).

AMD seems to be pretty laid back when it comes to OpenSource. It seems like they could be a lot more involved in many projects, and it seems like the area where they most constribute are ones where the user isn't going to benefit a lot from it. Seems like AMD is mostly involved with support OpenSource developers.

So I believe AMD needs to start expanding their financial support to include apps and projects which users can use and see. Linux UX / UI, OpenSource programs/apps on Linux to replace Windows-only programs, etc. Basically all my points listed above.

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There are other analyst sites that discuss the advantages of AMD being under the control of Dubai based Abudala Investment Co.

The number of ATIC members of the AMD board has also been a well discussed item, and the cross-licensing agreement and the 2009 settlement with Intel and the political influence of the European Union anti-trust proceedings against Intel in the truce between Intel and the US Government and AMD/ATIC/GF has all been discussed thoroughly.

I don't think there is any doubt that AMD is entirely controlled by Mubadala, which also controls ATIC.

I also think that there is no doubt about the fact that the AMD lithography is designed in the Dresden facility in Germany, now waiving the GF flag.


AMD is a linux kernel contributor just like any other hardware manufacturer that wants linux kernel support. There is nothing special about that, even Microsoft is a linux kernel contributor, albeit only to make sure Microsoft products run on virtual machines in linux and to make sure Microsoft customers can run Linux on the Hyper-V platform, in other words, to make sure it can retain some of its customer base, but hey, any functionality that is open source is welcomed by the Linux foundation, that it comes from Microsoft or nVidia or anyone else, makes no difference.

The Khronos Group maintains industry standard API's like OpenGL, OpenCL, OpenMP, etc.... AMD, like Intel or Apple or IBM, conform to those standards, to make sure that their products are usable by industry standard applications.

AMD also directly supports linux userspace development, with their structural sponsorship of OpenSuSE and other projects. AMD has been the main sponsor of OpenSuSE for many years. The first AMD GmbH was created in Munich, which is in Bavaria, just like Nuremberg, where the headquarters of SuSE are located. The main development of operating system modules, drivers and chip lithos, is now in Dresden, in Eastern Germany, and since 2012 is flying the GF flag instead of the AMD flag. GF's headquarters are in Singapore, and GF owns 9 or 10 large fabs, which makes it by far the largest advanced chip baker in the world.

In fact, I think Intel and nVidia are the only CPU/GPU manufacturers in the world that don't directly sponsor linux userspace development. IBM is a big investor, Samsung, Apple, Huawei, Qualcomm, etc..., all big investors in linux kernel and linux userspace development.

ATIC used to invest in the US through the AMD company, but since the US Government intervened to prevent the board of AMD to reflect the ownership situation, by forcing ATIC appointed board members off the board, it has been investing mainly through a separate joint venture set up between AMD and GF. This has lead to the very odd situation whereby AMD has reacquired stakes in a fab, whereas the fabs were split off of AMD into GF in the past, when GF and AMD set up a brand new fab in NY State.

I don't think ATIC is interested in expanding AMD's IP. They need to keep AMD on board as long as they need the x86 cross-licensing agreement, but there is a reason why the next server-chip generation by AMD (well, by ATIC/GF), is not x86-based. There is only so much Patriot Act any computer business can endure, and I don't think ATIC is interested in being coerced into giving the NSA backdoors into its hardware, like Intel does... if there is anything that really hurts Intel outside of the US, it's the fact that Intel hardware cannot be trusted because it contains NSA backdoors, weakened encryption acceleration, and mathematical errors.

AMD has also acquired SeaMicro, which is an Intel reseller. That confirms AMD's company status in the ATIC constellation as a commercial/sales entity, aimed at the x86 platform. This pressure on AMD has brought results: all current hardware consoles run on AMD x86 hardware. This was undoubtedly fought over very hard by the people at AMD (it even probably burned out their CEO), in a fight for AMD US to stay relevant in the group.

The new CEO of AMD is not the former chief of the x86 and GPU division, but Dr. Lisa Su, the chief of the custom division, bringing AMD more in line with the general ATIC/GF strategy to insulate the x86 dependencies inside the ATIC group, and focus on other technologies first. HSA is another mainly non-x86 initiative.

AMD has the problem that the 2009 Intel settlement states that AMD can't produce full x86 platforms, which is a right reserved to Intel. That holds AMD down on x86. AMD has HSA working on x86, but they have to pretty much wait for Intel to catch up, because they can't release new supporting platforms, Intel has to do that first, and obviously, Intel is not interested in doing that for two reasons: 1. Microsoft has no support whatsoever for remotely modern computing technology, and doesn't have the money, the in-house talent, nor the projected return on investment to pay for the development of Microsoft HSA support, and the Wintel alliance is very strong, and 2. Intel itself can't get HSA right, they've been developing like crazy on Beignet for the last 2-3 years, even had more than 100 developers at Intel USA working on it to no avail, before they moved the entire development to China. Intel is in panic about it though, that's why they're so adamant on releasing product after product in the ARM dominated ranges like microcontrollers etc, and why they're showing such a huge marketing effort to dump supposedly ARM-competing products at ultra low prices and to make so much advertising noise in the "maker community"... problem is that the "maker community" is a movement lead by modern hackers, who know better than to trust Intel hardware and non-open source software, and who need the tools for modern technologies (like 3D printing for instance) that are available on open source platforms, but really suck on closed source software consoles.

ATIC/GF/AMD, or any other member of the HSA for that matter, are not concerned about MS-Windows. Most Linux users aren't concerned about MS-Windows, in fact, I think the only Linux dude that has ever broken his head over competition with MS-Windows, is Shuttleworth lolz, but even the "community forum" where the "Linux vs Windows" thingy was posted by Shuttleworth as the first issue, has been disbanded by Canonical after 10 years or so. It kinda caught headlines that linux wants to take on Windows, but in reality, it's a non-lieu.

I don't know why so many people (especially in the US) always think that Linux needs help to compete with Windows LMAO... Linux is not in the same league as Windows, Linux is an open source, GPL licensed kernel that's compatible with every computing hardware platform ever made by mankind, and GNU/Linux is a real full-featured open source GPL licensed operating system that focuses on the freedom of choice and opportunity for the user and mankind... MS-Windows is a closed source, NSA backdoor containing, limited compatibility (x86 only), commercial software console, that isn't even compatible with one single open source hardware platform that focuses on exploiting users to benefit shareholders of a commercial company... Linux devices are being adopted by new users at the rate of more than 2.5 million devices per day, the main resource of economic advancement in the post-industrial West, the Internet, is entirely governed by linux, and ALL of the main services over the Internet (including Microsoft owned services like Skype) run exclusively on linux. Most computer users own and use more devices they run a linux distro on than they own devices they run MS-Windows on, yet they still consider themselves "Windows-users", which is a complete joke.

When looking at the facts instead of the marketing, you'd have to agree that it's not linux or open source that needs help, but rather that closed source and MS-Windows need help, and if Intel continues like it does, it will sooner or later encounter the same kind of situation nVidia has been facing since 2012: Intel does provide the Linux foundation with the necessary open source drivers for its products, but not for all functionality, and always much too late. That brings about a situation whereby the most marketed "new features" of Intel products (i.e. power efficiency), are not implemented on the world's leading computing kernel until the products are replaced by the next generation of Intel products. That means that the premium price that Intel charges for its products, is just not worth it on world's leading kernel based computing platforms... 

IBM, AMD and other chip bakers directly support GNU/linux open source development though, AND make sure their drivers are submitted to the Linux foundation in a timely manner, because they know what's going on, and their crap actually does what it says on the tin, because they allow enough time between hardware platform releases to let the hardware platforms mature and debug, a debugging which is efficient because the drivers are actually merged prior to the release of the hardware, which is something Intel can't seem to do, which means that debugging never happens during the lifetime of Intel's products.

For open source users, it's not that nice to have to change PC hardware. It's much nicer to keep with the PC platform that works, and expand it with post-PC-era hardware with much better native open source support.

nVidia and Intel are living proof of the fact that open source focused technologies do things better. Almost none of the "premium features" of nVidia and Intel in terms of for instance acceleration features work as advertised, Shadowplay is a joke, CUDA is a joke, QuickSync is a joke, Intel Encryption acceleration is a complete joke, to the point of GNU/Linux having to actively disable it for security reasons... The open source world has moved on from these "patchwork technologies", has moved on to a full hybrid scalable computing model. AMD/GF/ATIC is one of the major providers of solutions that support this technology, Qualcomm and Samsung are right up there also, Intel and nVidia aren't. The visible marketing may suggest otherwise, but just look at the facts, look at the fact that GF runs 9-10 fully occupied advanced chip fabs all over the world, and spits out more chips than any chip bakery out there. All of those chips are not just made to sit in storage or on shelves, they are made for customers that make systems with them. Those systems are bought and used by everyone out there, and only a small minority are ever used to run MS-Windows, the vast majority is used for some kind of linux platform, whether embedded, mobile or stationary, standalone, client or server.

AMD is now a very lean enterprise, most valuable production assets and most valuable development has been secured in non-US-based entities. The goal of AMD is to make the most out of the cross-licensing agreement with Intel, and most profits are creamed off to GF. AMD as a company is not capable of staying out of trouble in the constellation it is kept in inside of the ATIC/GF universe, and is entirely dependent on ATIC for its mere survival, and ATIC wants to keep it that way, and that's probably a wise decision.

Intel is still a very big enterprise that sells a lot of units, but the only way they had left to get into post-PC technology, was to make a JV with a Chinese open source RISC-SoC manufacturer. Either way, the gravitational center of post-PC chip technology, is shifting away from the US, which also leads to a clear movement away from US-based closed source software. That means that there is an actual problem for the closed source software console market, i.e. Microsoft, that right now has a firm grip on x86 hardware through the Wintel alliance, but that may well be in serious jeopardy in the near future, and that has been forced to pretty much dump its licenses for very low prices outside of the US for almost 10 years, has been giving away licenses (e.g. Windows 8 with Bing, several student licensing programs, etc...) even in the US, and is now facing the decision to even make Windx free-to-play. There is a very big market for software consoles, just like there is for hardware consoles, but even on the software console market, open source based systems have been surfacing (i.e. Android, SteamOS, CrOS), and they have been hugely successful to the point of not only bringing the the closed source software console market to a status quo, but even to the point of severally reducing it, freezing it's growth, and realizing a huge growth for itself. People expect the software console operating software to be free of charge, because of this evolution. That causes a problem for Microsoft, and Microsoft needs to get into the hardware selling market to even be able to recuperate income from their software. And that hardware effort by Microsoft is not successful at all, and it makes them even more dependent from Intel and AMD and x86 in general, because on the Intel side, the Surface is doing very poorly (the first two generations were almost unsold, the third generation sold as many units in an entire quarter as there are Android devices sold in one single day of that quarter), and on the AMD side, the Xbone is not doing so well in comparison to Sony's PS4, especially when looking at markets outside of the US, and despite the radical price cut and minimal margin Microsoft has implemented. Even software/hardware console-based industries like the commercial closed source gaming and digital entertainment industries, have shown most growth on open source based (but often "proprietarily consolized") platforms like Android and Chrome. This evolution of the market towards monetizing open source based platforms, means that the commercial interests in open source upstream development, also grow, and that commercial companies reserve ever more funding to open source development.

Even if AMD would not fund open source development, which it does, open source development is not likely to see a decrease in its funding any time soon. Quite on the contrary, there is momentarily more funding of open source development than there is of closed source development going on, and the open source funding will only increase, as governments and commercial outfits alike, start to realize how much they depend on it.

I agree that there is a lot of good funding of Open source projects. But I would like to see it more focused.

Instead of spitting resources between open office and Libre the open office team should merge with Libre. That is  just one example. If Suse, Redhat, and Oracle all helped one GUI it would rapidly speed up development. 

It would be great to see Oracle, Redhat, Citrix, and Suse pool resources to create one bad ass VM management Suite. I am not saying to end support for competing hypervisors but to make a common and easy to use tool set to manage them.

All the big hardware manufacturers really need to throw their full weight behind Wayland so we can get off X.



Plus one to Wayland support.

Open Office is not libre any more, that's why it's become irrelevant, and LibreOffice has become the new open source standard.

Reducing choice is not a good option, it will only lead to technological poverty and full platform fragmentation like on OSX and Windows. The logical open source software development hierarchy needs to be kept: upstream supersedes downstream. With Chromium and other projects, Google has already proven that commercial interests in a unified platform breaks compatibility with upstream, and reduces software quality enormously. The methods of closed source development do not apply to open source.

Wayland is being pushed enormously, but also being held back by for instance Intel and by for instance Debian. Once OpenSuSE becomes the most important RPM distro again (if it isn't yet already), now that it is not in US hands any more, this situation will undoubtedly dramatically improve. OpenSuSE really needs to keep pushing forward with broad spectrum bleeding edge development, and that's exactly what they keep doing, in part thanks to the Microsoft money.

As to VM's, Xenserver is open source, Xen Suite and tools aren't, and Citrix has no interest in providing linux VM management tools, because their business model is to sell such tools, closed source of course, for software consoles. There already are excellent VM management tools that are fully open source for linux though, gnome-boxes couldn't be simpler even if Apple tried, Virt-Manager is easy to use and enormously full-featured, including not only kvm/qemu, which is the most important virtualizer on linux, but also lxc and even Xenserver. OpenSuSE has it's own GUI front end through Yast, which is a very powerful tool. A lot of linux users also just prefer the speed and precision of the CLI, and to be honest, there is no GUI substitute for that...

This article gets all the money.

KWin and Mutter/Muffin (KDE's compositor, GNOME's compositor and Cinnamon's fork of the Mutter compositor, Muffin) are all in the process of converting to Wayland. [1]

Performance on Wayland and compatibility may require some further work. There have been issues with game performance while using Wayland, but nothing recent.

There is some compatibility work that's been done. [2]

So while there is progress, it's not quite where it needs to be yet. But good on ya for remembering that. =)

[1] -

[2] -

Hhmmm... that's good, right?

@Zoltan My comments refer only to Linux for the PC Desktop at home. Linus Torvalds has said several times that he wants Linux to take over the desktop at home. [1]

Linus Torvalds: "I still want the desktop." and  "The challenge on the desktop is not a kernel problem. It's a whole infrastructure problem. I think we'll get there one day."

My blog post refers to opinions and recommendations needed within Linux to allow it to change it's infrastructure to take over the desktop at home. So rather than just echoing Linus Torvalds' opinions, they're an extension of it that offers a direction to take the one area Linux still hasn't conquered.

You've said many good things about Linux, yes. That still doesn't change that in December 2014, Linux was only used on 1.25% of desktop computers, while Windows is 91% and Mac OS is around 7%.

You can check current desktop OS usage here:

This points to one big gaping hole in Linux's dominance. Why not close that gap? Why shouldn't AMD support OpenSource developers financially, directly? Funding developers to take over that one area could be a huge source of income for AMD to increase their hardware sales, as my blog post mentioned.

It could also help bring the infrastructure changes needed to make Linux mainstream on PC and laptops alike. But if these aren't the kinds of changes Linux needs to take over the desktop, what are? Or is Linus Torvalds wrong about Linux taking over the desktop?

[1] -

@Taco Bell branched out into LibreOffice and NeoOffice (NeoOffice is for Mac, so it doesn't really matter) because was having their development discontinued by Oracle. Check out what this sweet excerpt from Simon Phillips:

"The act of creating The Document Foundation and its LibreOffice project did no demonstrable harm to Oracle's business. There is no new commercial competition to Oracle Open Office (their commercial edition of OO.o) arising from LibreOffice. No contributions that Oracle valued were ended by its creation. Oracle's ability to continue development of the code was in no way impaired. Oracle's decision appears to be simply that, after a year of evaluation, the profit to be made from developing Oracle Open Office and Oracle Cloud Office did not justify the salaries of over 100 senior developers working on them both. Suggesting that TDF was in some way to blame for a hard-headed business decision that seemed inevitable from the day Oracle's acquisition of Sun was announced is at best disingenuous." [1]


[1] - (the 7th paragraph, or 3rd from bottom to top of the actual article)

It's stupid to compare market penetration of Windows versus linux on desktops, because they're not the same. Most "Windows users", even those that hate Linux, find their Linux machine they own more important than their Windows-downgraded PC, because they all want their router to work or their phone, so that they can get online, before they want their PC to work. This is the Linux dominance if you have to talk in those terms. The rest are false statistics that mean nothing. There is no functional entity like "a Windows PC".

There is just no such thing as a "Windows PC", because there is no PC that can only run Windows. Every bit of hardware out there that runs on Windows, also runs on Linux. Not all PC hardware is limited by a software console like Windows though.

People that run linux on their hardware, don't use their hardware for the same thing as software console users. They don't functionally downgrade their hardware, they want to stay in control of their hardware and get the most out of it.

It's not such a good thing if Windows users migrate to Linux "because you can do with Linux what you can do with Windows", because that means that there are cunning commercial entities that are bringing out Linux-based software consoles that allow them to control the users in a similar way as Microsoft has been controlling users. SteamOS, CrOS or Android are such examples.

The one good thing about Linux-based software environments is though, that's it's far easier for the users to break through the software console limitations. The world discovered that there is benefit in rooting an Android phone, and there will always be a way to root an linux-based software console and take control over the device by tapping into the kernel, and the kernel being open source, there is nothing at all the corporation can do against it.

On the PC, the threshold for software console users to take control, has always been much higher, because the core functionality is obfuscated, cannot be accessed. This has lead to two things: 1. users have been kept dumb by Microsoft (definitely true, compare the real computer and software knowledge of kids these days to what kids knew when they were running Commodore64's... the only thing they know know is what YouTube channels they like and how much nVidia cards cost, but that's it, no programming skills, no insight in how computers or operating systems work, etc...), and 2. software consoles technology has been stagnant for about 20 years, because Microsoft didn't need to innovate to get paid, the users can't escape anyway, where are they going to go, unless they learn Linux or BSD...

Your blog post is talking about how Linux should change to become more of a software console. I'm just saying that there is no need to turn Linux into a software console. There is more need to keep Linux a real unlimited operating system.

Do you know what's going to happen with x86 hardware once there are software consoles based on Linux and "Linux has taken over the desktop"?

Hardware manufacturers are going to make sure that only software consoles (based on linux, but nonetheless functionally limited software consoles, just like Windows not meant to let the user control the system, but let the system vendor control the user) run on that hardware. Linux on the desktop is going to cause exactly the same as Linux on smartphones did: on smartphones, suddenly the linux kernel was not holy anymore, and GCC was not the only compiler anymore. Instead, companies like nVidia made hardware that isn't entirely compatible with a standard linux kernel compiled with a standard GNU C compiler, it requires special modules that are not available in GNU/GPL licensed software. A couple of years from now, the entire freedom of Linux and open source on the main hardware platforms will be limited to the level Intel and Microsoft and nVidia and Google want.

Don't think that's true? Then think about what Apple and OSX is... and why they all want to be like Steve Jobs...

Think about it! Do you still want Linux to change to become more like the software consoles? You can go blind staring at potential benefits!

I am not saying we should reduce choice. But there is are some problems with "not invented here syndrome". Systemd and Mir are a big examples of it.

The software console guys are much worse at that than open source, though. Like why build your own shitty compression software, when there is 7Zip? 

Agreed in part, disagreed in part.

What I agree with: yes, if Linux becomes mainstream we'll have companies trying to "cr*p-ify" the everliving h*ll out of it. Android is one example. That might be bad, but Android is still leagues ahead of Windows RT ever was. So a cr*ppy Linux-based OS is still leagues ahead of a a cr*ppy proprietary OS. So things would become "less worse", but then there's a need to have users educated about GNU/GPL. And by creating GNU/GPL software that offers similar or better functionality for free, then those companies would be out of the market (once users discover those programs).

What I disagree with: Because the list of suggestions I gave is about improving open-source software, it doesn't mean "proprietary takeover". Offering similar functionality and a simpler interface can't be a bad thing, can it? Many people don't want to spend 40 hours or more to learn how to program. Just as I'm sure most users on this forum aren't interested in building their own toilet, and installing their own plumbing in their house. People specialize, which has allowed the world to reach it's current state of technological progress. That's why I don't have to know the ins and outs of PHP to use a website.

Technology was made simple for a reason. Computers became big business when they were made accessible and affordable. The GUI was a big part of this. The Internet also helped, and so did the introduction of graphics-oriented peripherals (like the mouse and trackball). The point is that while romanticizing about times when users knew about transistors and circuits is all nice and dandy, back when users did their homework and research, the progress we have today would have never been reached without business investment, without public interest, or without something to get the attention of people who would grow up to become programmers. I learned programming because I fell in love with computer games when I was a child, and because I loved ICQ, MSN, early MMOs, and was fascinated with technology in general.

Actually, I'm sure that on this forum there must be hundreds of users who learned to program because they were fascinated by games (either on console or PC), websites and/or online programs.

Blaming the user for not being interested isn't the solution. It never has been. As someone who has worked with tech support, I can tell you first-hand that it never leads to anything constructive. Educating the user is better. But sparking their curiosity or getting them to become passionate about the subject, enough to research it, learn it and become an enthusiast - now that takes some teaching skill. In fact the best teachers are those who inspire a passion and thirst for knowledge of the subject they teach in their students.

I never meant to talk about hardware limitations of Linux. I simply meant to talk about how accessible and functional it is, so users can migrate over. Why blame them for not being interested, when offering them a better option with better functionality is better? But better functionality isn't just whether or not the OS can run the software; it's also about how accessible it is, what softwares the user cares about that are available on it, and how compatible they are.

Having a better UX/UI for Linux can't be a bad thing, could it? (Well, users should have the option to show more advanced options if they choose. But hiding options most users don't care about by default can help.)

Having a better open-source photo manipulation and vector graphics software couldn't hurt, right?

Having an improved filesystem couldn't hurt, could it?

Better automatic caching and parental filters couldn't hurt either, could it?

The point I make is about making Linux accessible, simple, easy. Giving the user functionality he cares about. Helping Linux take over traditional desktops and laptops. Because you say it doesn't matter; and what about the privacy of those users? What about being able to have Linux take over their market share and their income, so they can't continue to show the world how closed-source nonsense can be profitable. If open-source software can clear out Nvidia, Microsoft and Intel from their closed-source nonsense, what could that tell investors? How could it affect business investments in open-source software? And how could it affect what users care about, and what software they choose?

The NSA leaks by Snowden let users know that their privacy was a big deal. Privacy became a mainstream issue only because it was explained on the news. Because while there is information out there, it's often not well explained. Think about information like piracy, and just like piracy, the problem of information isn't the lack of it; it's the distribution platform. Users don't know much about Linux because they aren't shown the benefits, nor is Linux as accessible as MacOS or Windows, and some software they really care about isn't available on Linux. My point is to fix that, by first making sure the ecosystem and infrastructure are ready. Then we can worry about spreading the news.

When computer hardware and software was made accessible, there was a huge boom in computer development and research, which helped us a lot. Why not have a renaissance of that with Open-Source software too, by making it more accessible? If it works for computer hardware and software, why couldn't it work for open-source hardware and software?

Despite our disagreements on socio-political issues, I always enjoy reading and talking to you about linux related things. You always have some of the most thought out, if not lengthy, posts on these forums. This one has to rank in the top 5 of your longest posts ever, but 10/10 on content and context. Good read.

The problem with Coreboot support is what other chips are placed on the mobo, AMD themselves have given everything to get all of their own hardware working with Coreboot, however if the mobo manufacturer adds in a bunch of unsupported SATA, USB, Network etc controllers to the mobo then it doesn't matter that AMD supports Coreboot because the comp may still be rendered useless due to the 3rd party hardware that doesn't have support.

Nobody cares about the GNU/Hurd project.

As for OpenGL support, at least with the OSS drivers, this is a MESA project and is currently mostly only worked on my Intel and RedHat devs the current version supports all of the 3.3 spec, most of the 4.0-4.2 spec and all of which should fall into place

OSS software adoption of OpenCL wont happen till it's finally hammered out in Gallium which is still a ways out however AMD and the rest of the HSA Foundation members have put out several patches in the last few months to add HSA support to the Linux kernel and other sub systems, since HSA is somewhat reliant on OpenCL it's going to be on the list of things that AMD gets running on the OSS drivers soon.


As to included games, so we need something better then Solitaire and the same simple boardgames that Mac OS X and Windows comes with? The most graphically advanced OpenSource game are Yo Frankie!



As you can see there aren't allot of options when it comes to impressive looking games since most 3D games are just a bunch of uninspired Quake/UT clones because id released the engines


As for the UI, theres several of them to choose from, the problem is that too many distros jump on the development version instead of of giving them a year or so to mature. Personally I still stick with the Mate/Gnome 2.32 desktop as it's still in my 20 years of experience in computing on everything since the Apple IIe and Windows 1.0 to the current gen and everything in between it's the one desktop that just does what I need without wasting my time.

As to AMD expanding their OSS reach, they need cash to do that, currently all their cash is going into R&D to try and find a way to get ahead of Nvidia and Intel., If HSA pans out, AMD's next gen CPUs and GPU's hand Intel and Nvidia their ass and game console sales rise AMD'll have more then enough cash on hand to hire more devs.

I'd like to add that there are a number of pretty good professional tools for Linux, unfortunately they also come with a professional pricetag like Nuke and  Lightworks has been neutered theres no Linux competitor to say Apple's iMovie/Final Cut Express/Final cut series of video editing software and the OSs video editing software like Cinerella, Kino, Pitivi and Avidemux don't come close yet.

As for OSS games, theres not much hope there, even with some good game engines out theres no getting a passable story and art assets because nobody seems to realize that they CAN make a paid OSS game.

As to AMD, I'm hoping that their next gen hardware makes a big splash in the coming years and that they can move into the ARM market with their Opteron A1100 series and eventually expand into the larger mobile ARM market as well, as I'd love to be able to get  a cellphone that has fully OSS drivers unlike the current situation.

Yep. That was the point I was trying to make: we need better professional open-source software that's free to use, for both personal *and* professional use.

As for AMD 64-bit ARM processors... I'd love to see phones based on something like that. Well, perhaps 6-core AMD 64-bit ARM processor with some really top-notch integrated graphics with Mantle support (or OpenGL NG).