Linus Torvalds, the father of Linux, on Tuesday promised enthusiastic followers at the LinuxWorld show in San Jose that ?world domination is just around the corner.?
For years, Torvalds has joked about ?world domination? as the ultimate goal for Linux. But he was clearly overwhelmed by the huge crowd in the San Jose Convention Center, where he was introduced by VA Research president Larry Augustin as ?the leader of the free world?.
Torvalds described the passion that has driven Linux developers worldwide. ?Even when they get paid for it, they still [work on Linux] because they think it?s the most fun you can have in front of a computer,? said Torvalds.
Some of these hardcore supporters distrust the commercial exploitation of the operating system by ?freeloaders? such as Red Hat Software, Torvalds remarked, but he praised the contribution of these companies.
?They?re making money, but they?re also doing Linux a big favour,? said Torvalds. He said commercial companies have concentrated on areas neglected by Linux?s original supporters, such as ease of use and of installation.
Unlike other speakers at LinuxWorld, Linus Torvalds avoided gratuitous NT-bashing. But he did point at a key difference between Linux and the proprietary OS world. After exalting the new version 2.2 of the Linux kernel, he added: ?I?m actually happy that there?s a lot of people who haven?t bothered to upgrade, because they liked the old version. And that?s exactly how it should be.?
Linus Torvalds said the new Linux kernel offers great improvements in such areas as support for multiprocessing. He admitted that the operating still has a way to go until it is ready for the most demanding enterprise applications, but said the operating system's flexibility would allow it to fulfil everyone's needs.
Torvalds said that the Linux community would focus on scaling the operating system up, but also on scaling it down towards embedded systems. Torvalds added that his personal attention will be concentrated on making Linux run well on the typical PC desktop.
Most people will buy their Linux operating systems shrinkwrapped from companies like Red Hat, said Linux. But other, specialised vendors will develop Linux versions tailored to specific applications such as microcontrollers, Torvalds said.
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