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

Josh Branning lovell.joshyyy at gmail.com
Wed Sep 14 09:07:21 GMT 2016

On 14/09/16 01:07, Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton wrote:
> ---
> crowd-funded eco-conscious hardware: https://www.crowdsupply.com/eoma68
> On Sat, Sep 10, 2016 at 9:07 PM, Josh Branning <lovell.joshyyy at gmail.com> 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 sunxi.org 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
>> loaded.
>   ... 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
> proprietary!
>   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.
> l.

Getting rid of boot0 is not far away:


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 

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. (lists.gpl-violations.org 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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