A loud ruckus surrounding the factory images for the new Nexus 7 has just developed over the past day or so. The source of the issue stems from Qualcomm licensing issues. Apparently Qualcomm some custom code embedded in their new chips in the next generation Nexus 7, and they are unwilling/unable to work out some type of arrangement with Google so that Google's AOSP initiative can release the factory images. This resulted in quite a bit of drama.

First, the famed AOSP developer Jean Baptiste-Queru has quit the AOSP in disgust over the whole issue. He is frustrated because he was being blamed for the issue, even though it is completely out of his hands to control. Here's a quote from him on the subject,

Well, I see that people have figured out why Iím quitting AOSP.

Thereís no point being the maintainer of an Operating System that canít boot to the home screen on its flagship device for lack of GPU support, especially when Iím getting the blame for something that I donít have authority to fix myself and that I had anticipated and escalated more than 6 months ahead.
Who wouldn't want to give up when faced with such a "catch 22" situation? Of course, that isn't the end of it. A petition has been put up on Change.org directed at the CEO of Qualcomm. Its sole purpose is to get the issue resolved by allowing the factory images to be published. If it works, hopefully it might also bring Jean Baptiste-Queru back to the AOSP. Here's a quote from the petition, followed by a link in case you want to sign your name to it,

Please allow Google to release the factory images of Android devices using Qualcomm CPUís and GPUís to the Android Open Source Project. It is a large inconvenience to developers and programmers worldwide trying to improve the experience of Android, while the factory images are locked down, due to legal issues with a few proprietary GPU binaries.
It's funny how software patents create such a huge headache, even when it's not about someone getting sued.

Source: Change.org