Focus: People Behind Linux

by Marjorie Richardson

Wow!, what a big topic this turned out to be—so many people, so little space. After making what seemed like an infinite list of people we wanted to talk to and honor, we decided we better figure out a way to narrow our focus. We did this by using the Kernel 1.0 credits file—these people are truly the “founding fathers”--and adding a few more names, including Patrick Volkerding and Alessandro Rubini. Even so, we still had 84 names. Knowing we might not be able to find everyone (how right we were!), we dug in and started sending out e-mails, asking for phone numbers and interviews.

All those we were able to contact were gracious and cooperative, sending us e-mail copies of their answers so that we can include them on the web site in coming weeks. Having just talked to Linus in September of last year, I decided to write a short bit about him without actually contacting him again. We'll save that for the next kernel release. I think you're going to enjoy learning a bit about the people who brought us our favorite operating system.

If Linus is the “father” of Linux (and we all agree he is), then “maddog” is the “godfather”. He is the glue that holds the Linux community together, and he shares all with us this month in an article and a centerfold.

All in all, we've had a good time with this one—you will too.

A Visit with Caldera

Some folks from Caldera came by the first week of April to tell us what's new in Utah. After their change in focus from “Linux for Business” to “Linux for eBusiness”, Caldera has gone solidly after the e-commerce market, with three new product releases: eDesktop, eServer and eBuilder. All three products have been optimized for use on the Internet. eDesktop 2.4 is the latest release of the Caldera OpenLinux distribution with enhancements (improved hardware detection by Lizard) and additions, such as the Citric ICA client which provides access to Windows applications through the Web, and MoneyDance, a personal checkbook-type application comparable to Quicken. Also, remote administration can be done through the Web as well as unattended installs across main machines. eServer provides Pentium-class operation and is free. eBuilder is the big one, a combination of Open Linux eServer, Evergreen's Ecential 3.0 and IBM's WebSphere. It is designed to give the e-commerce site everything it needs, e.g., merchandise and multimedia database, search engine, order distribution, shopping cart and payment processing.

The eBuilder product is directed toward the big business customer who wants to get into the e-commerce market in a hurry. It is modular, distributed and easy to customize and manage. It is also very expensive—many thousands of dollars. At Comdex 2000, Ransom Love said Linux is a “proprietary” platform, and with eBuilder, it becomes a very commercial one for Caldera.

—Marjorie Richardson, Editor in Chief


Load Disqus comments