Twenty years ago this August a computer programmer from Helsinki, Finland started a revolution. His name is Linus Torvalds. He made the bold choice to share his operating system with the world and to do so for free. Later he decided to release it under the GNU General Public License, which guaranteed that it would be free and its source code open. This revolution in computing created the largest collaborative development project in the history of computing. Literally thousands have contributed code to the Linux kernel.
Today the Linux operating system is literally found everywhere. In fact most people don’t even know they are using Linux. Linux is a leading server operating system, which means most of the web is running on Linux. In fact the 10 fastest supercomputers in the world are running Linux. I dare say that most Android users have no clue that they are using a Linux operating system. But it doesn’t stop with mobile phones, Linux is also found on almost 2% of desktop computers as well tablet computers, routers, ATM’s, video game consoles, and can even be found in cars.
The film industry has also gone Linux. The first major film produced on Linux servers was Titanic back in 1997. Since then major studios have migrated to Linux including such giants as Dreamworks Animation, Pixar, and Industrial Light & Magic. The Linux Movies Group says that more than 95% of the servers and desktops at large animation and visual effects companies use Linux.
Today Linux turns 20 years old and many are joining in the celebration. The Linux Foundation will officially celebrate the 20th anniversary of Linux at this years LinuxCon in Vancouver, Canada on August 17-19.