KernelTrap: Reverse Engineering Wireless Drivers
Jun 08, 2006, 12:15 (0 Talkback[s])
"Following Andrew Morton's overview of what will likely be
merged into the 2.6.18 kernel, several developers discussed the
legality of the ACX1xx wireless driver. Jeff Garzik began the
discussion, 'I've never had technical objections to merging this,
just AFAIK it had a highly questionable origin, namely being
reverse-engineered in a non-clean-room environment that might leave
Linux legally vulnerable.' Andreas Mohr explained that the open
source driver was implemented by the same people that reverse
engineered a binary-only driver available at one time in some Linux
distributions, 'this might fail to comply with usual 'clean-room'
practices (e.g. one party examining a driver and then a separate
party implementing a new driver with the data gained from examining
the original driver)...'"