[Battlemesh] [OpenWrt-Devel] Request for Feedback - prplwrt Software Support Program - initial draft

Daniel Golle daniel at makrotopia.org
Mon Mar 7 14:01:10 CET 2016

Hi Eric,

On Thu, Mar 03, 2016 at 03:07:22PM -0600, Eric Schultz wrote:
> As discussed in prplwrt meetings, prpl is interested in funding development
> work on OpenWrt. In order to make this as fair as possible, I'm proposing a
> process which I'm tentatively calling the prplwrt Software Support Program
> (PSSP)
> PSSP will fund innovative OpenWrt development work that is responsive to
> the needs of the OpenWrt community and industry. To make sure the process
> benefits the community as much as possible, I'm asking for your feedback.
> Please look through the document I've linked below and provide feedback,
> either as comments on the document or as a reply to this message.

First of all, I'm happy to read prpl is going to fund OpenWrt

As a community, OpenWrt has always been helpful to allow third-party
modifications to software and hardware, and most developers started
their involvment by hacking on existing consumer-grade hardware found
in the wild rather than buying a dev-board. The ongoing tivoization
(ie. non-hackability despite physical access to gear) makes me wonder
about the acceptable licenses for prpl funded contributions, ie. if
things could be licensed GPLv3, as that would (at least in theory)
prevent locked-down devices and associated problems with
maintainability and security. On the other hand, I'm fully aware that
licenses cannot solve that problem unless someone actually goes to
court and that's a lot of effort...
The debate on the FCC-induced lock-down of WiFi devices showed that
you are defending the *option* to modify firmware -- however, what
about hardware and software vendors who believe that they are better
off if their garden is fenced, independently of the FCC requirements?
While I'm having a hard time to imagine what OpenWrt developers could
possibly ever want from "the industry" and how prpl could help there,
this seems to be a quite relevant aspect where an organization such as
prpl could be helpful:
Arguing that building devices which are defective-by-design creates
more problems than profits in the long run, especially to society as
a whole.
See http://www.defectivebydesign.org/
Is that a debate you are having?
If so, what's prpl's position on the tivoization issue?

Apart from that, I'm wondering how prpl funded developments will find
their way into openwrt.git in case of conflicts or any reason which
might lead to the changes being rejected, similar to what Linus asked
a couple of days ago. Obviously, adding a new package will hardly
cause any difficulties, while changes to the OpenWrt core and
infrastructure are more likely to be problematic. For now, prpl did
not exactly develop a reputation of discussing their plans and
intentions publicly in a way which is accessible to anyone potentially
affected *before* taking actions. And not everyone is necessarily
willing to follow hours of video conferences on Youtube from which it
is quite clear anyway that this is only the "community involvement"
part with little insight regarding strategic decissions apparently
being made behind closed doors.
The draft document you shared suggests that you are willing to discuss
things in advance, supposedly to prevent the need to fork or not
getting the changes pushed into the OpenWrt project. However, that's
as far as I understand the procedure for individual projects and not
for the "themes" which could just as well be in conflict, eg. with the
priorities set by reviewers you are depending on.
Thus I'm concerned about transparency and mode of strategic decissions
(democratic? plutocratic? dictatorship?) and it would be great if you
would fully share the (apparently already decided) plan lying ahead and
supposedly affecting many of us.



> As a quick summary, the process would go as follows:
> * prpl and its members, as funders, would set initial themes that all
> projects would be expected to fit into.
> * the community, prpl members, and others would submit and comment on ideas
> for projects that fit those themes
> * potential implementers would then submit proposals for implementations,
> including a budget, timeline and general plan for implementation
> * an OpenWrt community committee, the prpl TSC and prpl Board would
> finalize which implementations are selected and funded.
> More details are in the linked document. I want to make sure everyone in
> the OpenWrt community has had a chance to provide their thoughts on the
> program so please provide your feedback as soon as possible and no later
> than March 17.
> Thanks,
> Eric
> PSSP proposal:
> https://docs.google.com/document/d/1b5LwqNPUasSafP-3NLwnV7rXRRUPDfj5yrU772dkpoc/edit?usp=sharing
> -- 
> Eric Schultz, Community Manager, prpl Foundation
> http://www.prplfoundation.org
> eschultz at prplfoundation.org
> cell: 920-539-0404
> skype: ericschultzwi
> @EricPrpl

> _______________________________________________
> openwrt-devel mailing list
> openwrt-devel at lists.openwrt.org
> https://lists.openwrt.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openwrt-devel

More information about the Battlemesh mailing list