Olá Alexaandre e todos interessados nesta thread.

Em contato com nossos parceiros que fazem a distribuição deste telefone nos USA e Canada, consegui levantar alguns esclarecimentos que podem ser úteis a todos. Mas realmente tenho que admitir que usei erroneamente o termo 100%, talvez use algo em torno de 90% para não deixar dúvidas.

Aproveito para convida-lo e os demais interessados a comparecer em minha palestra sobre o Openmooko Freerunner amanhã(20/01) as 17:00hs na Campus Party, o maddog estará conosco durante o evento e pode nos conceder mais detalhes sobre quão livre o telefone é.

Segue trechos das mensagens do Jon Hall e do Brian Code:

From: Jon 'maddog' Hall
Date: 19 de janeiro de 2009 11h51min10s GMT-02:00

Denis,

As you know, in many pieces of hardware there is the hardware itself,
then there is the "firmware" that extends the hardware architecture.
After that there can be the software of the device driver.

As an analogy if you think about a CPU, most CPUs are basically RISC
processors at the core level, but have the "firmware" of the micro- code
that gives them their final functionality and programming interface.
Change the microcode and you have a fairly different CPU.

The GSM units have firmware. That firmware supports an API that is used
to program the GSM unit.  That API is set, and should not change.
However, the firmware underneath is "code" that may change the GSM
unit's frequency, power capabilities, etc.  This firmware is typically
not published due to issues of testing and licensing by certification
groups. The GSM and its firmware is a "unit". It could have been done all in hardware, and this would be a non-issue. But because people know
that the "glob" is there, they want to be able to change it.  Change
that firmware, and you would have to re-certify again. Likewise if you
simply wanted to look for additional, non-published functionality in
that firmware, and exploit it, there is no guarantee that functionality would still exist if and when the firmware is upgraded for some reason.

The only legitimate reason I can think of for requiring the firmware of
the GSM unit would be that the documentation of the API is inadequate
and you want to better understand the programming of the unit, or you
wish to add new features to the firmware, which might violate the
afore-mentioned certification.

In the Openmoko series of phones, the API for the GSM unit is published. People can do anything with the published functionality of the GSM unit
through that API that they wish.

md


From: Brian Code
Date: 19 de janeiro de 2009 13h37min35s GMT-02:00

The phone is as open as possible at the moment. There are some areas that are closed, and those are outlined below and the reasons behind them.

1. Specifications for some of the hardware chips have NDA's attached to them. This includes the Glamo graphics chip, the Calypso GSM chip, the Atheros Wifi chip and the Ublox GPS chip. 2. Although the Glamo specifications are closed, there is open source software to exercise the functionality of it (ie: MPEG4 decode) 3. The Calypso chip has a proprietary firmware due to GSM security phones. It is unlikely that the source for such a chip will be released publicly. 4. The firmware for the Atheros Wifi has a full MAC closed source firmware blob. There is a discussion about having the firmware implement only half-mac so the routing and other fun stuff can be done by the kernel (which also means that the main processor has to do the processing instead of the processor core on the Atheros chip). 5. The GPS has limitations in the firmware that limit it to civilian specifications (the military mandates that it doesn't work over a certain altitude, or over a certain speed).

All of these provide some sort of serial interface that you can correspond to.

Parts of the freesoftware people seem to think that if the firmware isn't updatable in the field, it's considered "hardware" and thus not part of the software system. Personally, I think that's ridiculous, because I would always like to have enhancements to my hardware.

All of the boot code, the OS and application code (save for the Google Marketplace app, and Google Maps) is available as Open Source.

Koolu continues to strive to keep the Android OS it puts together as open source as possible, and we will continue to push changes to the Android mainline tree.

Cheers,
Brian

--
Denis Galvão


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