Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Alan Cox and the End of an Era

Filed under
Linux

In the beginning, free software was an activity conducted on the margins - using spare time on a university's computers, or the result of lonely bedroom hacking. One of the key moments in the evolution of free software was when hackers began to get jobs - often quite remunerative jobs - with one of the new open source companies that sprang up in the late 1990s. For more or less the first time, coders could make a good salary doing what they loved, and businesses could be successful paying them to write code that would be given away.

The other company that made a conscious effort to sweep up relevant hacker talent is happily not only still with us, but thriving. Red Hat has recently posted excellent financial results, and remains arguably the leading open source company. Given its focus on GNU/Linux, it naturally tended to recruit the top people there - people like David Miller, Stephen Tweedie and Alan Cox.

Cox was born in Solihull, and studied at universities in Wales. He was a keen Amiga hacker, and contemplated writing an entirely new operating system for that machine, but decided that "writing file system stuff was too hard for one person to do." So he was naturally impressed to discover that a crazy Finn had done precisely that.

Rest Here




Alan Cox leaves Red Hat, suggesting company's future direction

Matt Asay: After 10 years with Red Hat as one of its highest-profile developers, Alan Cox is moving on to Intel.

I suspect the impetus for the change has much to do with Cox's interest in the "low-level stuff" that Intel needs, and Red Hat much less so. Implicit in Cox's note is an indication of where Red Hat is going: up the stack.

This shift will not happen overnight, but it very clearly has been happening.

Rest Here

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

More in Tux Machines

Git 2.2.1 Released To Fix Critical Security Issue

Today's Git vulnerability affects those using the Git client on case-insensitive file-systems. On case-insensitive platforms like Windows and OS X, committing to .Git/config could overwrite the user's .git/config and could lead to arbitrary code execution. Fortunately with most Phoronix readers out there running Linux, this isn't an issue thanks to case-sensitive file-systems. Read more

Ubuntu 15.04 Alpha 1 For Its Various Flavors

While Ubuntu itself no longer puts out alpha/beta releases in favor of just testing out the daily Live ISOs, the various Ubuntu flavors still participating in the traditional release process have done their first alpha releases this afternoon for Ubuntu 15.04. Read more

Robolinux 7.7.1 LXDE Runs Windows Apps with Stealth VM

Robolinux 7.7.1, a fast and easy-to-use Linux distribution based on Debian has just received a new desktop environment, LXDE, making this the third second flavor of the distribution. Read more

Jolla's Sailfish OS Update 10 Is Now Available

The tenth update to Jolla's Sailfish mobile operating system is now available. This update is version 1.1.1.26 and is codenamed Vaarainjärvi. This latest update to Jolla's Sailfish OS includes the device lock now supporting alpha-numeric codes, copy-paste support between Android and native Sailfish apps, Mail app improvements, new overlays for maps, search improvements, unification to the accounts framework, new MMS settings, UI improvements, and an assortment of other improvements. Read more