Linux kernel is 20 years old. Congratulations to all the people contributing to this amazing part of the libre software history.
In this mini-post I will introduce a talk given by Linus Torvalds on September 2001 (wow) about the origins of Linux. It is part of the Computer History Museum. I am sorry that is not distributed under a free license. Some interesting things that I found there (and there are much more):
- One of the reasons he argues to be able to create Linux is that when he began with computers, they were enough “simple” to be understood.
- One year before he began to write Linux, he didn’t know anything about C programming language.
- At University, he used a MicroVAX, and he did not like the machine, but he learnt that he wanted to have Unix at home. And in Finland in that time, it was really hard for a hobbyist to get a copy of Unix.
- He wanted to learn how his PC worked and he did not like Minix, so he began to write his own operating system.
- He also explains the points when he was near to stop the development and why he kept on working on it.
- In the questions and answers part of the video there are very interesting pieces of Torvald’s ideas, for example the concept of software as a creation that evolves over time and how the GPL and the community development helps the software to evolve since it puts no limitations on what the software should do or who can use or work on the software.
This is the video link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVTWCPoUt8w