Friday, June 22, 2018

system firmware past / present / future



From the evening event at the living history museum https://livingcomputers.org/
for UW alumni https://www.cs.washington.edu/ I snapped a few photos.

Beginning with a working Xerox Alto



and continuing into a product category that never failed to intrigue me, namely the mainframes and mini's.

Especially after re-reading https://www.amazon.com/Soul-New-Machine-Tracy-Kidder/dp/0316491977

From the Xerox device
I possibly found a use for http://www.uefi.org/sites/default/files/resources/UEFI_Spec_2_7.pdf

that was defined so many years ago.

Continuing on the big iron is the CDC 6500

with its space age looking terminal

and culminating with the famous IBM 360 where instruction set compatibility was pioneered.

As part of Paul Allen endowing the computer science department we also received commemorative diplomas.  Pretty cool.


From admiring the history of computing in the SODO district of Seattle, I spent a few days in the humid suburbs of Washington DC as the platform security summit https://www.platformsecuritysummit.com/. Many exciting presentations from across the industry. I was invited to speak about openness and server firmware with the following presentation
https://github.com/vincentjzimmer/Documents/blob/master/Open_Source_Host_Firmware_Directions-001.pdf

Following on the spirit of openness, I was honored to be invited to keynote the upcoming open source firmware summit https://osfc.io/. The landing page for my talk will be https://osfc.io/talks/keynote. This should follow the arc on reducing friction and providing transparency for host firmware development.

And on a final note, it appears as if the USPTO has issued its 10 millionth patent https://10millionpatents.uspto.gov/docs/patent10million.pdf on June 19th. My first issued US patent #5,940,587 based upon my Intel work caught the tail end of the 5 million wave, whereas my last two issued Intel Patents book-ended this milestone, namely last week's #9,998,284 and this week's #10,002,002, respectively. Amazing ramp of issue rate from the patent office https://patentlyo.com/patent/2014/09/patents-issued-fiscal.html....

© 2018, Vincent ZimmerThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License 


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