[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: LCC and blobs

Matthew Garrett <mgarrett@chiark.greenend.org.uk> writes:

> Brian Thomas Sniffen <bts@alum.mit.edu> wrote:
>> Michael Poole <mdpoole@troilus.org> writes:
>>> Lots of people cannot write or modify C code, but we accept as free
>>> many programs that include C code.  The user being inexpert in some
>>> technique does not render a thing non-free.
>> But something being *not software* does render it *not software*.
> dd if=/dev/mem of=/tmp/bios bs=1k skip=960 count=64
> will happily present you with a copy of your system firmware (assuming
> you're on x86). If you run ndisasm over it, you'll find it's x86 machine
> code. You can even extract bits of it and run them. It looks awfully
> like software. The fact that you lack the skills to turn it into
> something that you recognise as software doesn't mean it isn't software.

And putting a paper copy into a good scanner will transform a printout
of a program into software.  The fact that something has a two-way
conversion to software doesn't make it software.  I've asked several
times for a delineation, in the world where anything convertible to
software is software, between what is software and what is not.  I
have yet to read such.


Brian Sniffen                                       bts@alum.mit.edu

Reply to: