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The GNU System versus the Linus System

Posted in BSD, FSF, GNU/Linux, Kernel at 10:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNU and Linux

Summary: Linus calls Linux “Linus”

IN MY correspondence with Linus last week I attempted to diffuse some friction between GNU/FSF/SFLC and the side which is Linus/OSDL/LF. It is always better to work together where possible, BSD included.

It is rather amusing to find that for the second time in about a month, Linus announced Linux (-rc3) in the mailing lists and calls the kernel “Linus” (in the headline). Here is the latest incident. Surely it’s just a typo or a Freudian slip, not a matter of ego. But to repeat an old joke, Linus said he named two projects after himself (the second one being git, which actually means something in British English). Below we add a video where he makes this statement.

“Surely it’s just a typo or a Freudian slip, not a matter of ego.”Did Miguel de Icaza name his projects after himself too? Right now he conveniently ignores Gnote [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] even when referring to a post which covers it. He also ignored completely (and quite conveniently) the implications of TomTom/FAT for Mono and Moonlight [1, 2].

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  1. Shane Coyle said,

    April 22, 2009 at 10:57 am


    Nothing wrong with having an ego sometimes.

    Let’s have some fun with it, we could start calling this site Roycott Novell ;^ )

    BTW, like the new frontpage idea, how has the effect been on DB load?

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    April 22, 2009 at 11:11 am


    Before enabling cache we had 100-200 queries per second and after caching it’s about 40-50. Right now it’s 39.50. :-)

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    April 22, 2009 at 11:12 am


    “It was suspected for some time, and now it’s official.Linus does upgrade himself.” http://lkml.org/lkml/2009/4/22/89

  4. NotZed said,

    April 22, 2009 at 5:10 pm


    I was doing some thinking about what drives free software developers the most in general.

    And I came to the conclusion it wasn’t a ‘scratch to itch’, it isn’t altruism, and in most coders cases it isn’t simply to write free alternatives. At the end of the day what it really comes down to it being an ego trip. It usually stems from using shit software and thinking you can do a better job; there is certainly a lot of inspiration out there. And the ego-stroking pay-off is reward enough without requiring money.

    Certainly for some of the ‘leaders’ this ego component has almost become embarrassing.

    Jose_X Reply:

    Maybe you mean the most visible developers may have ego issues. Also, when you do something really well, well, you are happy.

    David Gerard Reply:

    Eric S. Raymond’s essay Homesteading The Noosphere says pretty much the same thing.

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    April 22, 2009 at 5:15 pm


    When developers write code for a paycheck and copyright is assigned to $company, then it doesn’t inspire high-quality programming.

    Gentoo User Reply:

    Let’s forget about your pet peeves for a moment here, and ponder the fact that you just said that people at companies like IBM, Sun, and I don’t know how many others over the past 30 years never produced anything of particular value or quality.

    Arrogance does not begin to describe that. I don’t understand people who feel they must make everybody look bad in order to look good themselves. Is it so difficult to simply look at how far FOSS has come in the past 10 years and feel good about that? Does that not stand on its own as a tremendous achievement? Why is it necessary to continually criticize and belittle everything else?

    I just keep praying that your toxic brand of advocacy never enters the FOSS mainstream.

    David Gerard Reply:

    Before trolling, go read The Cathedral And The Bazaar.

    Gentoo User Reply:

    Ya, never read that before, thanks for pointing it out.

    notzed Reply:

    “When developers write code for a paycheck and copyright is assigned to $company, then it doesn’t inspire high-quality programming. ”

    Not necessarily. If they *only* write code for a paycheck that might be true.

    A driven programmer writes good code because that is the most satisfying, assuming they have the free reign to be able to do it of course. Commercial pressures are more likely to interfere with that in a paid setting verses personel issues in a volunteer one. Companies like Sun and IBM have a certain pride-value as well (even MS, in its fantasy closed world, does too).

    On the other hand, there are lots of ‘programmers’ who did it because someone said they’d make money out of it, and not because they’re interested in it. Many might be able to write competent code but probably never inspired creations.

    Said “Gentoo User”:

    “Let’s forget about your pet peeves for a moment here, and ponder the fact that you just said that people at companies like IBM, Sun, and I don’t know how many others over the past 30 years never produced anything of particular value or quality.”

    Wow. So much drawn from such a small statement. I think someone else might have some pet peeves of their own. Those and a reading comprehsion related learning disability.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:


    It’s an old familiar troll. No need to feed.

    Gentoo User Reply:

    It’s an old familiar troll

    I don’t think I’m old (well compared to you, maybe) but please, show your friends how and where I have “trolled”. Please.

  6. Dan O'Brian said,

    April 22, 2009 at 7:12 pm


    Did Miguel de Icaza name his projects after himself too? Right now he conveniently ignores Gnote [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] even when referring to a post which covers it.

    So let me get this straight… you are attacking Miguel de Icaza because he isn’t attacking GNote? It upsets you that he isn’t upset about GNote, doesn’t it?

    That makes me chuckle.

    I’d also like to point out that Sandy Armstrong’s post about Tomboy (which is what Miguel linked to) is 99% about new features Tomboy just got and not about GNote. Only a sentence or two is devoted to GNote.

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