It Takes Time - Building Bridges and Symphony Among Fragmented Open Source Firmware Community

Main Room,

System Firmware - the most undervalued software component of any hardware, is always left behind in the pursue of free and open source software solution that enable us all. Open source firmware made some significant momentum starting with coreboot and U-Boot about 25 years ago. In the field of host firmware, one of monumental changes came when Chromebook started adopting coreboot as its host firmware, bringing a more secured, lightweight, resilient yet open host firmware to 100 millions of devices over the world; yet - almost rest of consumer laptops are plagued with locked-down and highly restricted of host firmware in their users hand.
In comparison to other software community such as Linux, open source firmware community is significantly much smaller, yet highly fragmented into different community projects which rare interactions with each others, while all sharing the same goal - to promote a healthy open source firmware ecosystem. In this talk, we will explore the nature of open source firmware community - its ugliness and beauties, the conflicts and compromises. In the mist of all these, there are many unsung heroes that made huge sacrifices for the greatness of open source firmware community. We will share some behind-the-scene stories, some cross-communities and collaboration efforts hoping to share knowledge and experience to drive a better open source firmware community ahead. In reflecting the past and present mistakes and progress made, hopefully, the time has come for us to usher into a much better open source firmware era - for a more sustainable and transparent firmware for all.