Elon Musk might enjoy the status of most-talked-about celebrity in the technology world, but his company Tesla doesn’t have many admirers when it comes to open source and free software enthusiasts. The company is known to be using many GPL-licensed technologies that need Tesla to share the source code of their software.
Contrary to its poor track-record, the company is now making some amends and sharing some parts of its software with the open source community. This will enable the security researchers and Tesla enthusiasts to perform tweaking with more freedom.
Software Freedom Conservancy, a not-for-profit that supports open source software, has been continuously engaging with Tesla on its GPL compliance violation since 2013. As per the organization, it had advised the company on multiple occasions as Tesla’s Model S contained BusyBox, Qt, and Linux kernel. Thus, not releasing the source code was unethical.
As a start, Tesla has open sourced the code in two GitHub repositories:
These repositories contain buildroot code that was used to create Tesla’s Autopilot system image. It also contains the Linux kernel sources for Nvidia Tegra-based infotainment system.
The company has said that it’ll continuously make efforts to keep up with the newer releases. “Work is underway on preparing sources in other areas as well, together with a more coordinated information page. We wanted to let you know about this material as it is available now while work continues on the other parts,” it added.
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