Actually, the writer of this article doesn't use the binary NVIDIA driver either. If you look at the machine specs, you will notice that the graphics card is a lot older and perhaps underpowered compared to the rest of the system. Besides, I am not a gamer, so I don't have much use for 3D acceleration and other such features and the "nv" driver in XFree86 is perfectly adequate for my needs.
That said, wouldn't you find it strange if the article pretended that binary-only applications for Linux don't exist? You might not want to use them, but there are many people who do, so it seemed rather logical to mention them, especially because of platform-specific issues. Besides, these applications give an interesting indication about the state of the AMD64 computing - for example NVIDIA makes 64-bit binary drivers, but others don't (a recent post on the Opera forums by an Opera representative seemingly rejected the platform althogether as not really interesting in terms of numbers). So just because you stubbornly refuse to install any non-free application on your system, I don't think you can reasonably expect others to do the same.
While on this subject, let me pick your brain. Let's say I'd want to replace my existing graphics card with a different one that doesn't rely on binary drivers. Which card would you recommend? Thank you for your advice.
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