"The first of these, in my opinion, is a new way of
handling device firmware. In the best of all possible worlds,
firmware should be compiled with each driver. Linux users know all
too well that, despite the opening of some proprietary driver
firmware by vendors like Atheros, the Wi-Fi chip OEM, too many
devices still require proprietary firmware. In Linux 2.6.27, the
firmware blobs (binary large object) now have a permanent home: the
new directory, '/lib/firmware.'"