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Re: Debian trademark [was: Debian GNU/w32, may ready to be started?]

This is a fairly unimportant discussion, but it's interesting
from an academic point of view.

On Sat, Dec 08, 2001 at 12:53:54AM -0600, Adam Majer wrote:
> You have a point _but_ I tend to agree with John - firmware doesn't need
> to be software. It is there only to provide the standard interface to
> hardware - this used to be done without firmware at all, it was
> hardcoded. There are CPUs available that will reconfigure themselves
> thus are not hardcoded. Would you call them software as well?

I think anything executed by a microprocessor is software. PC BIOSs,
video card BIOSs, SCSI card BIOSs, etc all fit that definition I
think. Microcode inside modern CPUs is a bit blurry though.

There are programmable logic devices such as FPGAs (field 
programmable gate arrays) to which you download a design
built with a tool chain (as software is built with a tool
chain, the compiler and linker etc). However you're downloading
a circuit description into the device -- gates and wire
connections. Those designs aren't software (or firmware).
(I do designs for FPGAs for a living.)

Hamish Moffatt VK3SB <hamish@debian.org> <hamish@cloud.net.au>

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