Linus Torvalds Gets Award

Who Is Linus Torvalds?
For those that don’t know, Linus Torvalds was the creator of the original Linux kernel in 1991, which he created for his own uses and never intended for mass uptake. The Linux kernel is now used in a large range of computer devices from PCs to servers and phones to routers. He is still actively involved in the further development of his creation and often has the final say in what is included.

What Award Did He Win?
He was awarded the ‘Millennium Technology Prize’, which came with a €600,000 cheque, from the Technology Academy of Finland. He was nominated for his continued work in improving his creation and thus making computing easier to reach for many people. Of course, he didn’t do this alone and he acknowledged the contribution of the many thousands of people who have given their ideas, skills and time to make the Linux kernel as wide ranging as it is today. Linus put the success of Linux down to the selfishness of those involved, which sounds odd seeing as the kernel is given away for free and that would indicate that people are selfless. However, he noted that people only contributed what they needed to make it work for them.

So we have a multi-functional, fully customisable, free and readily available operating system thanks to the selfishness of a large number of people.

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