Linus Torvalds Biography
Linus Torvalds (full name: Linus Benedict Torvalds) is a Finnish-American software engineer who was born on December 28, 1969. He is the creator, and the principal developer of the Linux kernel, which became the kernel for operating systems such as the Linux operating systems, Android, and Chrome OS and many Linux distributions.
He is also the creator of the distributed version control system Git and the diving logging and planning software Subsurface. In 2012, he was honored alongside Shinya Yamanaka, with the 2012 Millennium Technology Prize by the Technology Academy Finland “in recognition of his creation of a new open source operating system for computers leading to the widely used Linux kernel”. In 2014, he received another award, the 2014 IEEE Computer Society Computer Pioneer Award and the 2018 IEEE Masaru Ibuka Consumer Electronics Award.
Linus Torvalds Age
Torvalds was born on 28 December 1969 in Helsinki, Finland. He is 49 years old as of 2018.
Linus Torvalds Family
He is the son of Anna Torvalds, a journalist and Nils Torvalds, a politician in Finland and Member of the European Parliament. He is also the grandson of statistician Leo Törnqvist and of poet Ole Torvalds. Both of his parents were campus radicals at the University of Helsinki in the 1960s. His family belongs to the Swedish-speaking minority.
Torvalds was named after Linus Pauling, the Nobel Prize–winning American chemist, although in the book Rebel Code: Linux and the Open Source Revolution, Torvalds is quoted as saying, “I think I was named equally for Linus the Peanuts cartoon character”, noting that this makes him half “Nobel Prize–winning chemist” and half “blanket-carrying cartoon character”. Torvalds attended the University of Helsinki between 1988 and 1996, graduating with a master’s degree in computer science from the NODES research group.
Linus Torvalds Wife
Linus Torvalds is married to Tove Torvalds (née Monni)—a six-time Finnish national karate champion—whom he first met in the autumn of 1993. Linus was running introductory computer laboratory exercises for students and instructed the course attendees to send him an e-mail as a test, to which Tove responded with an e-mail asking for a date. Tove and Linus were later married and have three daughters, Patricia Miranda (born 1996), Daniela Yolanda (born 1998), and Celeste Amanda (born 2000), two of whom were born in the United States. The Linux kernel’s reboot system call accepts their dates of birth (written in hexadecimal) as magic values.
Linus Torvalds Career
His academic career was interrupted after his first year of study when he joined the Finnish Army Uusimaa brigade, in the summer of 1989, selecting the 11-month officer training program to fulfill the mandatory military service of Finland. In the army he held the rank of Second Lieutenant, with the role of a ballistic calculation officer. Torvalds bought computer science professor Andrew Tanenbaum’s book Operating Systems: Design and Implementation, in which Tanenbaum describes MINIX, an educational stripped-down version of Unix. In 1990, he resumed his university studies, and was exposed to UNIX for the first time, in the form of a DEC MicroVAX running ULTRIX. His M.Sc. thesis was titled Linux: A Portable Operating System.
His interest in computers began with a Commodore VIC-20, at the age of 11 in 1981, initially programming in BASIC, but later by directly accessing the 6502 CPU in machine code. He did not make use of assembly language. After the VIC-20 he purchased a Sinclair QL, which he modified extensively, especially its operating system. “Because it was so hard to get software for it in Finland, Linus wrote his own assembler and editor (in addition to Pac-Man graphics libraries)” for the QL, as well as a few games. He wrote a Pac-Man clone named Cool Man. On January 5, 1991 he purchased an Intel 80386-based clone of IBM PC before receiving his MINIX copy, which in turn enabled him to begin work on Linux.
The first prototypes of Linux were publicly released later that year (1991). Version 1.0 was released on March 14, 1994.Torvalds first encountered the GNU Project in 1991, after another Swedish-speaking computer science student, Lars Wirzenius, took him to the University of Technology to listen to free software-guru Richard Stallman’s speech. Torvalds used Stallman’s GNU General Public License version 2 (GPLv2) for his Linux kernel.
After a visit to Transmeta in late 1996, Torvalds accepted a position at the company in California, where he would work from February 1997 until June 2003. He then moved to the Open Source Development Labs, which has since merged with the Free Standards Group to become the Linux Foundation, under whose auspices he continues to work. In June 2004, Torvalds and his family moved to Dunthorpe, Oregon, to be closer to the OSDL’s Beaverton, Oregon-based headquarters.
From 1997 to 1999, he was involved in 86open helping to choose the standard binary format for Linux and Unix. In 1999, he was named by the MIT Technology Review TR100 as one of the world’s top 100 innovators under age 35.In 1999, Red Hat and VA Linux, both leading developers of Linux-based software, presented Torvalds with stock options in gratitude for his creation. That same year both companies went public and Torvalds’s share value temporarily shot up to roughly US$20 million.His personal mascot is a penguin nicknamed Tux, which has been widely adopted by the Linux community as the mascot of the Linux kernel.
Although Torvalds believes “open source is the only right way to do software”, he also has said that he uses the “best tool for the job”, even if that includes proprietary software. He was criticized for his use and alleged advocacy of the proprietary BitKeeper software for version control in the Linux kernel. Torvalds subsequently wrote a free-software replacement for BitKeeper called Git. Torvalds,in 2008, stated that he used the Fedora distribution of Linux because it had fairly good support for the PowerPC processor architecture, which he had favored at the time. His usage of Fedora was confirmed in a later 2012 interview. He has also posted updates about his choice of desktop environment, often in response to perceived feature regressions.
Currently, the Linux Foundation sponsors Torvalds so he can work full-time on improving Linux. Linus Torvalds is known for disagreeing with other developers on the Linux kernel mailing list. Calling himself a “really unpleasant person”, he later explained “I’d like to be a nice person and curse less and encourage people to grow rather than telling them they are idiots. I’m sorry – I tried, it’s just not in me.” His attitude, which Torvalds considers necessary for making his point clear, has drawn criticism from Intel programmer Sage Sharp and systemd developer Lennart Poettering, among others.
Linus Torvalds Quotes
- Talk is cheap. Show me the code.
- Software is like sex: it’s better when it’s free.
- Intelligence is the ability to avoid doing work, yet getting the work done.
- The Linux philosophy is ‘Laugh in the face of danger’. Oops. Wrong One. ‘Do it yourself’. Yes, that’s it.
- Microsoft isn’t evil, they just make really crappy operating systems.
- That’s what makes Linux so good: you put in something, and that effort multiplies. It’s a positive feedback cycle.
- In my opinion MS is a lot better at making money than it is at making good operating systems.
- The cyberspace earnings I get from Linux come in the format of having a Network of people that know me and trust me, and that I can depend on in return.
- Shareware tends to combine the worst of commercial software with the worst of free software.
Linus Torvalds Net worth
Linus Torvalds’ Net Worth is at $150M.
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