[Libre-soc-dev] silicon catalyst starting in canada

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton lkcl at lkcl.net
Sun Oct 18 12:46:27 BST 2020

crowd-funded eco-conscious hardware: https://www.crowdsupply.com/eoma68

On Sun, Oct 18, 2020 at 10:52 AM Staf Verhaegen <staf at fibraservi.eu> wrote:

> But are they open source friendly/minded.

at this level until IBM releases their ASIC verification tools we are
just going to have to live with that.

> Investors typically are not fond of open source based business models

i'm talking with both a customer and an angel investor who completely
get that full transparency is the only way that they are going to
satisfy customers as to the security and auditability of the final

these customers are absolutely sick and tired of proprietary firmware
and ever since the Intel Management Engine fiasco are extremely
concerned about back-door spying co-processors.

explaining that to an investor is real simple and if they don't
understand that this is what the *customer* wants then we simply
politely end the conversation and move on to the next investor.

> as you typically can't achieve the ROI they have in mind with an open
> source business model. Problem with open source is that you will get
> competition before you can reach the ROI investors typically want on
> their investment.

not if the customer list is confidential, and the product being
developed is an "ancillary" to an existing well-established product
line with those customers.  then the competition simply has no idea
who to sell to, and even if they did, they'd have to become a
competitor to the *main* business (selling products at USD 3,000 a
time, where our ASIC will be a $20 component in that product).

> Of course (real) open source developers see this as a
> feature and call it community rather than competition

indeed.  the RISC-V community which is extremely large shows that
cooperation is in fact possible whilst still making money and having
nobody (significantly) stamping on each others' businesses and
customer lists.

> but that's not how investors typically think.

they're coming round.


More information about the Libre-soc-dev mailing list