×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Linus Torvalds Answers Your Questions

samzenpus posted about a year and a half ago | from the read-all-about-it dept.

Slashdot.org 326

Monday you had a chance to ask Linus Torvalds any question you wanted. We sent him a dozen of the highest rated and below you'll see what he has to say about computers, programming, books, and copyrights. He also talks about what he would have done differently with Linux if he had to do it all over again. Hint: it rhymes with nothing.The Absolute Death of Software Copyright?
by eldavojohn

Recently you spoke out about software patents and the patent process. But I was interested in what you said about how "nasty" copyright issues could get. You use SCO as the obvious nightmare case but what about violations against open source licenses like the GPLv3? Would you care if someone forked the Linux kernel and made major modifications to it and started selling it without releasing the code to the customers? What does your ideal situation look like for open source and commercial closed source? Would you just copy the Finnish model and aren't you afraid American experts are just as daft as American juries?

Linus: So I like copyrights, and even on patents I'm not necessarily in the "Patents are completely evil" camp. When I rant about patents or copyrights, I rant against the *excesses* and the bad policies, not about them existing in the first place.

The patent problems people on slashdot are probably familiar with: the system is pretty much geared towards people abusing it, with absolutely ridiculous patents being admitted, and it hindering invention rather than helping it. The failures are many, and I don't know how to fix it, but much stricter limits on what can be patented are clearly needed.

People were apparently surprised by me saying that copyrights had problems too. I don't understand why people were that surprised, but I understand even *less* why people then thought that "copyrights have problems" would imply "copyright protection should be abolished". The second doesn't follow at all.

Quite frankly, there are a lot of f*cking morons on the internet.

Anyway, the problems with copyright come from absurdly long protection periods, and some overly crazy enforcement. And don't get me wrong: I don't actually think that these problems show up all that much in the software industry. The case of SCO was not, I think, so much a failure of copyright law itself: sure, it was annoying, but at the same time it was really more about a psychopathic company with a failed business that tried to game the system. Tried, and lost. And yes, that fiasco took much too long, and was much too expensive, and should have been shut down immediately, but that whole "using the law for harassment" in the US is a separate issue independent of the copyright issues.

No, when I stated that copyright protection is too strong, I was talking about things like "life of author+70 years" and the corporate 95-year version. That's *ridiculous*. Couple that with the difficulty of judging fair use etc, and it really hinders things like archival of material, making of documentaries, yadda yadda...

So I personally think that IP protection isn't evil in itself - but that it turns evil when it is taken too far. And both patent protection and copyright protection has been taken much much too far.

Scale the term limits back to fifteen years or so, and copyrights would be much better.



When I'm designing a processor for Linux.
by Art Popp (29075)

I spend some time designing things in Verilog and trying to read other people's source code at opencores.org, and I recall you did some work at Transmeta. For some time I've had a list of instructions that could be added to processors that would be drastically speed up common functions, and SSE 4.2 includes some of my favorites, the dqword string comparison instructions. So...What are your ideas for instructions that you've always thought should be handled by the processor, but never seen implemented?

Linus: I actually am not a huge fan of shiny new features. In processor design - as in so much of technology - what matters more is interoperability and compatibility. I realize that this makes people sad, because people are always chasing that cool new feature, but hey, in the end, technology is about doing useful things. And building and extending on top of existing knowledge and infrastructure is how 99% of all improvement gets done.

The occasional big shift and really new thing might get all the attention, but it seldom really is what matters. I like to quote Thomas Edison: "Genius is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration". And that very much covers CPU architecture too: the inspiration is simply not as important as executing well. Sure, you need some inspiration, but you really don't need all that *much* of it.

So in CPU design, what should really be looked at is how well the CPU is able to do what we expect. The instruction set is important - but it is important mainly as a "I can run the same instructions the previous CPU did, so I can run all your programs without you having to do any extra work" issue - not as a "what new cool feature would you want in an instruction set".

To a CPU architect, I'd tell them to do the best they damn well can in the memory subsystem, for example. Regardless of instruction set, you'll want a great memory subsystem end-to-end. And I don't just mean good caches, but good *everything*. It's a hell of a lot of detail (perspiration), and I guarantee you that it will take a large team of people many generations to do really well on it. There is no simple silver bullet with a cool new instruction that will solve it for you.

And don't get me wrong - it's not *all* about the memory subsystem. It's about all the other details too.

Now, when it comes to actual instructions, I do tend to think that the world has shifted away from RISC. I'm a big believer in being good at running existing binaries across many different micro-architectures - the whole "compatibility" thing. And as a result, I think fragile architectures that depend on static instruction scheduling or run in-order are simply insane. If your CPU requires instruction scheduling for one particular set of instruction latencies or decoder limitations, your CPU is bad. I detested Itanium, for this reason - exposing the microarchitecture in the instruction set is just insane.

No, I want out-of-order and "high-level" instructions that actually work across different implementations of the same ISA, and across different classes of hardware (iow, span the whole "low-power embedded" to "high-end server" CPU range). So for example, I think having a "memcpy" or "memset" instruction is a great idea, if it allows you to have something that works optimally for different memory subsystems and microarchitectures.

As an example of what *not* to do, is to expose direct cacheline access with some idiotic "DCBZ" instruction that clears them - because that will then make the software have to care about the size of the cacheline etc. Same goes for things like "nontemporal accesses" that bypass the L1 cache - how do you know when to use those in software when different CPU's have different cache subsystems? Software just shouldn't care. Software wants to clear memory, not aligned cachelines, and software does *not* want to have to worry about how to do that most efficiently on some particular new machine with a particular cache size and memory subsystem.



What would you have done differently?
by Rob Kaper

It's been over twenty years since the inception of Linux. With 20/20 hindsight, what you have done differently if you had had today's knowledge and experience back in the early days?

Linus: I get asked this quite often, and I really don't see how I could possibly have done anything better. And I'm not claiming some kind of great forethought - it's just that with 20:20 hindsight, I really did choose the right big things. I still love the GPLv2, and absolutely think that making Linux open source was the greatest thing ever.

Have I made mistakes? Sure. But on the whole, I think Linux has done incredibly well, and I've made the right decisions around it (and the big things have *occasionally* been about technical issues, but more often about non-technical things like "Don't work for a commercial Linux company even if it seems like such a natural thing to do - keep working in a neutral place so that people can continue to work with me")



Monolithic vs. Micro-kernel architecture
by NoNeeeed

Has there ever been a time in the development of the Linux Kernel where you've wished you'd gone the Hurd-style micro-kernel route espoused by the like of Tannenbaum, or do you feel that from an architectural standpoint Linux has benefited from having a monolithic design?

Linux has been massively more successful than Hurd, but I wonder how much of that is down to intrinsic technical superiority of its approach, and how much to the lack of a central driving force supported by a community of committed developers? It always seemed like the Hurd model should have allowed more people to be involved, but that has never seemed to be the case.


Linus: I think microkernels are stupid. They push the problem space into *communication*, which is actually a much bigger and fundamental problem than the small problem they are purporting to fix. They also lead to horrible extra complexity as you then have to fight the microkernel model, and make up new ways to avoid the extra communication latencies etc. Hurd is a great example of this kind of suckiness, where people made up whole new memory mapping models just because the normal "just make a quick system call within the same context" model had been broken by the microkernel model.

Btw, it's not just microkernels. Any time you have "one overriding idea", and push your idea as a superior ideology, you're going to be wrong. Microkernels had one such ideology, there have been others. It's all BS. The fact is, reality is complicated, and not amenable to the "one large idea" model of problem solving. The only way that problems get solved in real life is with a lot of hard work on getting the details right. Not by some over-arching ideology that somehow magically makes things work.



Avoiding the Unix Wars
by dkleinsc

Why do you think Linux has been able to (mostly) avoid the fragmentation that plagued the competing Unixes of the 1980's? What would you say helps keep Linux a unified project rather than more forked system like BSD?

Linus: So I'm a huge believer in the GPLv2, and I really do believe the license matters. And what - to me - is important for an open-source license is not whether you can fork (which the BSD's allow), but whether the license encourages merging things back.

And btw, before people go all "license flamewar" on me, I would like to really emphasize the "to me" part. Licensing is a personal choice, and there is no "wrong" choice. For projects *I* care about, and that I started and can make the licensing decision for, I think the GPLv2 is the right thing to do for various reasons. But that does *not* mean that if somebody else makes another choice for his or her code, that wouldn't be the right choice for *that* person.

For example, I'd use a BSD-like license for code that I simply didn't care about, and wanted to just "push out there in case somebody else wants to use it". And I don't think proprietary licenses are evil either. It's all fine, it's up to the original author to decide what direction you want to do in.

Anyway, to just get back to the question - I really do think that encouraging merging is the most important part for a license for me. And having a license like the GPLv2 that basically *requires* everybody to have the right to merge back useful code is a great thing, and avoids the worry of forking.

And I do want to say that it's not that forking is bad. Forking is absolutely *required*, because easy forking is how development gets done. In fact, one of the design principles behind git was to make forking easy, and not have any technical barrier (like a "more central repository") that held back forking. Forking is important, and forking needs to happen any time there is a developer who thinks that they can do a better job in some area. Go wild, fork the project, and prove your point. Show everybody that you can make improvements.

But forking becomes a problem if there is no good way to merge things back. And in Linux, it's not been just about the license.Sure, the license means that legally we can always merge back the forks if they prove to be good forks. But we have also had a culture of encouraging forking and making forking be something that isn't acrimonious. Basically *all* the Linux distributions have had their own "forks" of the kernel, and it's not been seen as something bad, it's been seen as something natural and *good*. Which means that now the fork is all amicable and friendly, and there are not only no legal issues with merging it back into mainline, but there are also generally no big personality clashes or bad feelings about it either.

So it's not that Linux doesn't fork, it's that we've tried to make forks small and painless, and tried to be good about merging things back. Sure, there are disagreements, but they get resolved. Look at the Android work, for example: yeah, it wasn't all happy people and no problems, and it took a while, but most of it got merged back, and without excessively bad feelings, I think.



GIT
by vlm

If you had to do GIT over again, what, if anything, would you change?VERY closely related question, do you like the git-flow project and would you think about pulling that into mainline or not?

Linus: So there's been a few small details that I think we could have done better, but on the whole I'm *very* happy with git. I think the core design is very solid, and we have almost zero redundant information, and the core model is really built around a few solid concepts that make a lot of sense. Git is very unix-like in that it has a few basic design things ("everything is an object" with a few basic relationships between the different objects in the git database) and then a lot of utility is built up around that whole thing.

So I'm very proud of git. I think I did a great design, and then others (and Junio Hamano in particular) have taken that great design and really run with it. Sure, it wasn't all that pleasant to use for outsiders early on, and it can still be very strange if you come from some traditional SCM, but it really has made my life *so* much better, and I really think it got the fundamentals right, in ways that SCM's that came before did not.

As to git-flow, I want to really re-iterate how great Junio Hamano has been as a git maintainer, and I haven't had to worry about git development for the last five years or so. Junio has been an exemplary maintainer, and shown great taste. And because I don't need to, I haven't even followed some of the projects around git, like git-flow. It's not what I need for *my* git workflow, but if it helps people maintain a good topic-branch model with git, then all the more power to them. And whether it should go into mainline git or not, I won't even comment on, because I absolutely trust that Junio will make the right decision.



Storage advancements in the kernel?
by ScuttleMonkey

Now that Ceph is gathering momentum since having been included in the mainline kernel, what other storage (or low level) advancements do you see on the horizon? (full disclosure: I work for Inktank now, the consulting/services company that employs most of the core Ceph engineers)

Linus: I'm not actually all that much of a storage guy, and while I'm the top-level kernel maintainer, this is likely a question that would be better asked of a number of other people.

The one (personal) thing storage-related that I'd like to re-iterate is that I think that rotating storage is going the way of the dodo (or the tape). "How do I hate thee, let me count the ways". The latencies of rotational storage are horrendous, and I personally refuse to use a machine that has those nasty platters of spinning rust in them.

Sure, maybe those rotating platters are ok in some NAS box that you keep your big media files on (or in that cloud storage cluster you use, and where the network latencies make the disk latencies be secondary), but in an actual computer? Ugh. "Get thee behind me, Satan".

That didn't answer the question you really asked, but I really don't tend to get all that excited about storage in general.



favorite hack
by vlm

I asked a bunch of hard architecture questions, now for a softball Q. Your favorite hack WRT kernel internals and kernel programming in general. drivers, innards, I don't care which. The kind of thing where you took a look at the code and go 'holy cow that's cool' or whatever. You define favorite, hack, and kernel. Just wanting to kick back and hear a story about cool code.

Linus: Hmm. You do realize that I don't get all that close to the code any more? I spend my time not coding, but reading emails, and merging stuff others wrote. And when I *do* get involved with the code, it's not because it's "cool", it's because it broke, and you'll find me cursing the people who wrote it, and questioning their parentage and that of their pets.

So I very seldom get involved in the really cool code any more, I'm afraid. I end up being involved in the "Holy sh*t, how did we ever merge that cr*p" code. Perhaps not as much as Greg (who has to deal with the staging tree), but then Greg is "special".

That said, we do have lots of pretty cool code in the kernel. I'm particularly proud of our filename lookup cache, but hey, I'm biased. That code is *not* for the weak of heart, though, because the whole lockless lookup (with fallbacks to more traditional locked code) is hairy and subtle, and mortals are not supposed to really look at it. It's been tweaked to some pretty extreme degrees, because it ends up being involved any time you look up a filename. I still remember how happy I was to merge the new lockless RCU filename lookup code last year.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, I actually wish more people understood the really core low-level kind of coding. Not big, complex stuff like the lockless name lookup, but simply good use of pointers-to-pointers etc. For example, I've seen too many people who delete a singly-linked list entry by keeping track of the "prev" entry, and then to delete the entry, doing something like

if (prev)
prev->next = entry->next;
else
list_head = entry->next;

and whenever I see code like that, I just go "This person doesn't understand pointers". And it's sadly quite common.

People who understand pointers just use a "pointer to the entry pointer", and initialize that with the address of the list_head. And then as they traverse the list, they can remove the entry without using any conditionals, by just doing a "*pp = entry->next".

So there's lots of pride in doing the small details right. It may not be big and important code, but I do like seeing code where people really thought about the details, and clearly also were thinking about the compiler being able to generate efficient code (rather than hoping that the compiler is so smart that it can make efficient code *despite* the state of the original source code).



Books, Books, Books
by eldavojohn

As a software developer, I have a coveted collection of books. A few of said tomes -- both fiction and non -- have fundamentally altered the course of my life. Assuming yours aren't just man pages and .txt files, what are they?

Linus: I read a fair amount, but I have to admit that for me reading tends to be about escapism, and books to me are mostly forgettable. I can't really think of a single case of a book that struck me as life-changing, the way some people apparently find some book that really changed the way they think.

That said, I'll point to a couple of books I really enjoyed. On the non-fiction side, Richard Dawkin's "The Selfish Gene" was one book that I think is pretty influential. On the fiction side, as a teenager I enjoyed Heinlein's "Stranger in a strange land" a lot, and I have to admit to "Lord of the Rings" having been pretty important to me - but for a slightly odd reason, not as a huge Tolkien fan. For me, it was one of the first "real" books I read in English, and I started with a dictionary by my side, and ended it reading without needing one.

These days, I still read crap. I like my Kindle, and often read the self-published stuff for 99c. There are some real stinkers in there, but there's been a lot of "that was certainly worth the 99c" stuff too. I've also enjoyed just re-reading some of the classics I grew up with - I just re-read both the Count of Monte Cristo and the Three Musketeers, for example.



How do you deal with burn-out?
by kallisti5

You must of been burned out on Linux kernel development multiple-times over by now... how do you deal with it?

Linus: Oh, I really enjoy what I do. And I actually enjoy arguing too, and while I may swear a lot and appear like a grumpy angry old man at times, I am also pretty good at just letting things go. So I can be very passionate about some things, but at the same time I don't tend to really hold on to some particular issue for too long, and I think that helps avoid burn-out.

Obsessing about things is important, and things really do matter, but if you can't let go of them, you'll end up crazy.

So to me, some of the occasional flame-wars are really just invigorating. And the technology and the use cases end up changing enough that things never get *boring*, so I actually have not been close to burning out very often.

The one really painful time was some time during the middle of the 2.4.x series (about ten years ago), before I got to hand it over to stable maintenance, and we really had a lot of problems going on. You can google for "Linus doesn't scale" and various other threads about the problems we had back then, and it really was pretty painful. The kernel was growing and I wasn't keeping up, and BitKeeper and some fairly painful process changes really ended up helping a lot.



Describe your computer
by twistedcubic

Can you describe in detail your home and work computers, including processor, motherboard, and graphics card? And also say something about their compatibility with Linux?

Linus: My home computer isn't actually all that interesting: I don't need all that much CPU power any more, and for the last several years, my primary requirement (since CPU's are fast enough) has been that the system be really really quiet, and that it has a good SSD in it. If our cat deigns to jump into my lap while I'm working, the loudest noise in the room should be the purring of the cat, not the computer.

So my main desktop is actually a 4-core Westmere machine, not really anything special. The most unusual part of the machine is probably just the fact that it has a good case (I forget the exact case name now) which avoids rattling etc. And one of the bigger Intel SSD's. I think I'll be upgrading some time this fall, but I will have had that machine for two years now, I think.

My laptop (that I'm writing this with, since I'm traveling in Japan and Korea right now) is an 11" Apple Macbook Air from last year (but running Linux, of course - no OS X anywhere), because I really hate big laptops. I can't understand people who lug around 15" (or 17"!) monsters. The right weight for a laptop is 1kg, no more.



Re:The End
by Narnie

Speaking of ends, one day you'll pass on your duties. How do you envision the kernel and the Linux ecosystem after passing your reigns?

Linus: Oh, the kernel really has a very solid development community, I wouldn't worry about it. We've got several "top lieutenants" that could take over, and I'd worry much more about many other open-source projects that don't have nearly the same kind of big development community that the kernel does.

That said, I've been doing this for over twenty years now, and I don't really see myself stopping. I still do like what I'm doing, and I'd just be bored out of my gourd without the kernel to hack on.

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

326 comments

boring (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620435)

tl;dr

Re:boring (5, Insightful)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620557)

tl;dr

Speak for yourself, I enjoyed reading it.

Re:boring (5, Interesting)

ddt (14627) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620605)

Same here. Awesome read. Refreshing to see such a high-profile geek who doesn't feel the need to douche it up in interviews.

Re:boring (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620751)

And if anything, I think Linus ALWAYS comes off as a self-important douchebag.

Granted, I think all of the big names in tech are self-centered douchebags, so its not like Linus is somehow unique in that regard.

What I find as proof of the douchebaggery of Linus, its the "I'd change nothing" avenue of thinking. There are ALWAYS things every last one of us would change about projects we have been involved in. We are human beings, nothing is ever perfect - but the almighty Linus thinks otherwise. Douche.

Re:boring (4, Interesting)

HaZardman27 (1521119) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621001)

Not saying he isn't self-centered, but in this QA he basically admits that many of the right decisions which were made with Linux just happened to be the right decision. His answers also suggest that because of the correct license and non-technical decisions made, any technical mistakes can be handled well by the community.

Re:boring (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621307)

He's rightly satisfied with his efforts, that's not being a douche.

Re:boring (1)

fritsd (924429) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621717)

WeWhat I find as proof of the douchebaggery of Linus, its the "I'd change nothing" avenue of thinking. There are ALWAYS things every last one of us would change about projects we have been involved in. We are human beings, nothing is ever perfect - but the almighty Linus thinks otherwise. Douche.

Well, that's how you read it, but I interpret it as something different: Linus has become so "wise" (I really think that's the correct word but I could be wrong!) in managing large-scale projects, that he sees that anything he'd have done differently wouldn't have ended up in a *significantly better* kernel development process.

You were the one who used the words "nothing is ever perfect - but the almighty Linus thinks otherwise", but I'm quite sure that he'd agree with the first part of your sentence, but that it doesn't matter.

Unfortunately, the only way in which I can attempt to explain to you what I mean exactly, is by flinging an obscure bit of Dutch poetry at you. It's from the poets collective "Loesje". Here goes:

STREEFT ONBEKOMMERT NAAR HET IDEALE

If you read Dutch well, you're now either annoyed, or enlightened :-)
If your Dutch-fu is lacking, the subtlety of the poem will escape you.
HTH :-)

Re:boring (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621869)

So you're uncritical in your analysis of his response that you clearly didn't really read, and that makes Linus a douche. Got it.

Re:boring (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620625)

That's because you're a loser neckbeard. Simple as that.

Re:boring (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621479)

tl;dr

Speak for yourself.

I did speak for myself. Who else did you think I might be speaking for?

Re:boring (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621703)

Because you seemed to be under the misguided notion that anybody else might care about the ramblings of a nincompoop.

Re:boring (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620809)

you poor fuck. what did you expect? it is an interview. no one gives a flying fuck that you didn't read something on the internet

Buffing? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620465)

Rhymes with nothing?

Re:Buffing? (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620507)

It's a joke, like "orange", nothing rhymes with nothing.

Re:Buffing? (4, Funny)

Venner (59051) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620699)

True, it's a proper name, not a common word, but I've always liked this:

In Sparkill buried lies that man of mark
Who brought the Obelisk to Central Park,
Redoubtable Commander H.H. Gorringe,
Whose name supplies the long-sought rhyme for “orange.”

-- Arthur Guiterman

Re:Buffing? (4, Interesting)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620721)

Actually, door-hinge rhymes quite well with orange.

Re:Buffing? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620767)

No. Guess the song's over.

Re:Buffing? (0)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620839)

Unless you pronounce door-hinge and orange very differently from most people, I'd suggest that yes... they do.

Re:Buffing? (1, Interesting)

tverbeek (457094) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621255)

Dialects and accents differ, but lots of people pronounce the "h" (with a brief hesitation in front of it) in "door-hinge", and also enunciate the "i" (rather than the schwa in "orange"). So, no... they don't.

Re:Buffing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621969)

That's saying nothing about the different ways people pronounce the vowels in the first syllables.

Re:Buffing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621563)

nothing rhymes with something ....

capcha was pathetic .... maybe slashdot is trying to tell me my joke was bad, and I should feel bad ....... SUBMIT!!!

all in all... (5, Insightful)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620511)

...someone I could sit down over a pint with and just geek out. Cool.

Re:all in all... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620615)

They use liters in Finland, you insensitive clod!

Re:all in all... (3, Informative)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620673)

OK.

Otan 560 mililitres olutta ja paketti perunalastuja

Thanks, Bing Translate. :)

Re:all in all... (1)

blippo (158203) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620953)

It's actually "En stor stark och lite chips tack."

    (Linux speaks swedish...)

Re:all in all... (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620997)

tha's no good to me if I'm trying to order a pint and some flakeys in Helsinki! :x

Re:all in all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621573)

Except that if you were trying to order a pint in Helsinki, you could get away with not just the obvious Finnish, but also Swedish (taught to all Finns in school) and English (also, I think, taught to all Finns; and the TV from the UK and USA is not dubbed), and probably German or Russian if you got lucky with your barkeep.

I.e. most Finns speak not just their first language, but also the other official langauge of the country, and English. And many of them will speak another one as well! (Speak enough to understand you trying to order a pint anyway.)

Re:all in all... (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621847)

All good :) Props to the Finnish education system, but I figure it's polite to at least make an attempt to learn the language of the country you're going to (even if you do end up murdering tenses, etc). For me, there's very little worse for my mood than trying to give a German tourist directions around Nottingham when he only wants to speak German. My response when I encounter such ignorami is to point at their map and wave with the other hand in the universal greeting "If you can't be arsed to make an effort how do you expect others to help you?" Let them find their own way.

Re:all in all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620757)

Come to Portland. We have Linus and lots of pints. :)

Re:all in all... (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621093)

Indeed, that probably goes for everyone here. Linus sounds like a cool guy. I especially agree with "I really hate big laptops. I can't understand people who lug around 15" (or 17"!) monsters. The right weight for a laptop is 1kg, no more." Mine is about the size of a hard cover book, and weighs about he same.

I wonder what distro Linux uses? If he uses a GUI or a CLI? If GUI (which I doubt), which one?

Re:all in all... (2)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621583)

Why do you doubt he uses a GUI? There's been many slashdot stories about Linus's dislike for GNOME (esp. 3).

Re:all in all... (4, Informative)

spike hay (534165) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621707)

Last I heard he uses Fedora and XFCE4 after leaving the sinking ship that is GNOME 3. (Choice quote: "Who do I need to fuck to get standard font size and panel options, instead of having to wade through this kind of "unsupported and random extensions that look ugly as hell and break randomly" crap?")

Re:all in all... (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621767)

I guess that means you don;t think of yourself in this category: "Quite frankly, there are a lot of f*cking morons on the internet."... unfortunately, it depends on what category Linus thinks you're in... I wouldn't hold out much hope if you choose the wrong sort of pint!

Application Bianry Interface (3)

zugedneb (601299) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620529)

http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3170757&cid=41589193 [slashdot.org]
  I the post above, user "hairyfeet (841228)" asks about stable ABI...

Sad that he did not answer to that question, or it was not chosen? I would have liked to hear some new arguments, and about future plans...

The questons he got, or choose to answer are not really deep, anyone could have given them...

Re:Application Bianry Interface (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620769)

I would have liked to hear some new arguments, and about future plans...

Future plans are the best kind of plans of all.

Re:Application Bianry Interface (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621059)

Huh?
Linux has one of the most stable ABIs ever. You can still run code from nearly twenty years ago (given the proper libc) - the syscall interface is incredibly stable.

What you are probably thinking about are kernel internals. But since when are drivers considered applications!?

Re:Application Bianry Interface (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621585)

But since when are drivers considered applications!?

Since hairyfeet invented them.

Re:Application Bianry Interface (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621857)

asks about stable ABI...

CPU architectures should support the same instruction sets for 30 years, because backwards compatibility is king, but hardware vendors should expect to jump every time one of the kernel devs feels like making changes.

f*cking morons (5, Funny)

Lennie (16154) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620543)

Good to see Linus keeps up with his traditions in the first answer already by calling certain people morons. :-)

Re:f*cking morons (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621107)

yeah, that man has the right attitude ;-)

Parasitic words (-1, Troll)

jez9999 (618189) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620603)

So why have you picked up the incredibly annoying habit of beginning half of your sentences with a pointless two-letter word?

Re:Parasitic words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620659)

so, you should kill yourself

Re:Parasitic words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621443)

the final answer

Re:Parasitic words (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620817)

I was thinking the same thing. For somebody who hates "internet morons", he sure has no problem adopting their bad english and combative tones.

Re:Parasitic words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621343)

But he wasn't calling them morons because of the way they use English, or because they are combative. He calls them morons because they lack reading comprehension and/or reasoning skills, which is an actual mark of moronity.

(Insert "How good is your Finnish or Swedish?" retort here.)

Re:Parasitic words (4, Informative)

NikeHerc (694644) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621635)

... he sure has no problem adopting their bad english and combative tones.

Considering that Linus was born in Finland to a "family [belonging] to the Swedish-speaking minority," (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linus_Torvalds [wikipedia.org] ) IMHO his English is very good and, by comparison to the /. majority, it's excellent.

Get back to me when you speak three or more languages.

Re:Parasitic words (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621275)

Because he is not a native speaker, and a programmer. Boring, repetitive sentence structures have low thinking-overhead and allow the most efficient processing of the content. Short words that indicate a (small) relation between sentences is more organised than a stream of unconnected sentences. Programmers like well structured data, or else they could only write very short programs before running into too much complexity. Lexical creativity is for people who don't care about handling large amounts of data efficiently.

Booooooooring (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620613)

He may be a genius and all, but sure is boring as hell. I'm glad he isn't a teacher. I can't see mysef staying awake for 15 minutes during his lecture.

Re:Booooooooring (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620661)

Then again, it's in line with today's logo... boring as hell.

Re:Booooooooring (1)

HaZardman27 (1521119) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621037)

I'm sure this Q&A on Slashdot of technical questions has done a remarkable job of capturing his entire essence and personality.

Re:Booooooooring (-1, Troll)

Raenex (947668) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621547)

It pretty much has. You've got the insults, the arrogant opinions, and the inability to admit mistakes. I wouldn't charge him with being boring, though, since we're talking about kernel development, and the questions asked were mundane.

If they really wanted to spice things up they could have brought up Tridgell [theregister.co.uk] and see if he's changed his position on that at all.

Re:Booooooooring (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621529)

"You guys are a bunch of geeks obsessed with technical trivia and pointer design pissing matches! This fscking place is becoming like Slashdot!"

Not So Fast On The Pointers (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620621)

simply good use of pointers-to-pointers etc. For example, I've seen too many people who delete a singly-linked list entry by keeping track of the "prev" entry, and then to delete the entry, doing something like

if (prev)
prev->next = entry->next;
else
list_head = entry->next;

and whenever I see code like that, I just go "This person doesn't understand pointers". And it's sadly quite common.

People who understand pointers just use a "pointer to the entry pointer", and initialize that with the address of the list_head. And then as they traverse the list, they can remove the entry without using any conditionals, by just doing a "*pp = entry->next".

I'm going to have to disgree with Linus on that one. When I'm coding in a mixed group of people that includes old farts and interns and the performance isn't that critical, I'll do the former over the latter to insure that everyone in the group will understand it easily and will have less chance of breaking it if they change it. It can mean the difference between code that is robust and code that is fragile when it's being worked on, not just when it's running.

Re:Not So Fast On The Pointers (4, Interesting)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620823)

I believe that his pointer example is more a matter of personal style. I can easily see how doing away with the conditions will make for more efficient code, but in many cases, the preference he cites might also make the code a little more obfuscated. However, even that's nothing that a single-line comment wouldn't fix, making sure that whoever is reading the code fully realizes the intent behind it. I think perfectly valid arguments can be made for doing it either way.

Personally, I would classify this as a type of pointer design pattern that is ideal with linked list data structures, but I would not suggest that a person who doesn't regularly use every clever design pattern for pointers at every opportunity is necessarily less knowledgeable than one who does. In many cases, in fact, a person in the latter category may even be arguably guilty of simply trying to show off, rather than actually get whatever needed doing done.

Re:Not So Fast On The Pointers (1)

dubbreak (623656) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621099)

I'm definitely a big fan of readability in code. Of course you have to know your intended audience. People reading kernel code are not the same audience as, I don't know, people writing a financial application in a high level language.

With the work I do I am able to favour readability over efficiency (then optimize if required.. no premature optimization). It makes maintenance so much easier (and let's face it, code spends most of its life being maintained). Code is already way harder to read than write and I don't want anything impeding new hires from jumping in and understanding the code. Of course there's a fine line. I'd never do something truly inefficient just to make it more readable, I'd just be very hesitant to introduce a difficult to understand hack for the sake of efficiency I may not need. Processors and memory are cheap, a developer's time isn't.

Re:Not So Fast On The Pointers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621671)

Sorry, but I think Linus is right here. This is simply a smaller-scale of the same kind of improvement that object-oriented is.

Re:Not So Fast On The Pointers (1)

slashping (2674483) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621187)

I'm pretty sure Linus would rather that the old farts and interns stay out of the kernel, so they fact they won't understand it, is only a bonus.

Re:Not So Fast On The Pointers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621875)

So you're saying, "when I work with people who don't understand pointers...."

Anyhow, it's a bad example for multiple reasons. First, exists on all unix platforms, even proprietary unices. It uses exactly that pattern. It was originally written for the BSD kernel. Although, the Linux kernel folks have one of the worst cases of NIH syndrome I've seen--excepting perhaps Google, Inc--and so rewrote list implementations which over the past 20 years have become almost line-for-line identical.

Second, much like , if you're worried about a sophisticated idiom, put it in a macro or function.

Re:Not So Fast On The Pointers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621917)

*ugh*. <sys/queue.h>

Great Read (5, Informative)

milbournosphere (1273186) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620629)

Thanks, Linus, for taking the time to sit down and write up some in-depth, thoughtful answers. I, for one, enjoyed the answer regarding CPU design.

sadly funny (-1, Troll)

ThorGod (456163) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620677)

He loves to point out (correctly) that the internet is full of morons, but he does seem narrowly focused on CS. I was hoping his reading list would be more enlightening. I was looking for some philosophers (other than Dawkins) or even math. Math, because it's close to my heart and I could respect it. Philosophy because it is my heart, and genuinely broadens my world view. Like that Socrates quote: "the unquestioned life is hardly worth living."

I reject the Dawkins mention on the grounds that Linus is already known to be an atheist. It's like a christian telling you they read the bible.

Re:sadly funny (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620937)

I'm an atheist, I don't read Dawkins. My wife is an atheist, she doesn't read Dawkins. Just because someone is an atheist doesn't mean they're knee deep in the pro-atheism community. You make atheism sound more like a religion than what it actually is...

Re:sadly funny (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621013)

You make atheism sound more like a religion than what it actually is...
 
Sadly a lot of atheists give that impression in their actions.

Re:sadly funny (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621215)

You make atheism sound more like a religion than what it actually is...

Sadly a lot of atheists give that impression in their actions.

Isn't that an observational fallacy? I'd imaging you'd have a hard time identifying non-evangelical atheists (or the denomination of most non-evangelicals for that matter).

Re:sadly funny (1)

Myopic (18616) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621677)

Yeah. I've never read anything by Dawkins.

Oh, what's that you say? There's no such thing as magic and evolution is be best-supported theory in all of science? Yeah, I already knew that.

Then again, his books are on the long list of books I might read some day. I don't reject them, I simply don't seek them out.

Re:sadly funny (1, Troll)

omnichad (1198475) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621885)

Regardless of what you believe (or don't), it seems to be human nature - evolutionary or by design - to have a religion. And for those that don't believe in a Creator, the lack thereof often becomes a religion. Dawkins has become some sort of atheist pope. Lots of ritual and tradition for nothing in the religion of atheism. It's actually worse than believing in a God that may or may not exist, because then at least your rules and rituals might actually mean something.

I'm not an atheist, but I've always found this interesting.

Re:sadly funny (1)

rthille (8526) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621575)

If he'd said "The God Delusion" by Dawkins you might have a point in what you said, but since he was talking about "The Selfish Gene", which doesn't talk about gods or religion at all, but is very illuminating about how life works and why creatures do what they do, the point is just at the top of your cap.

Re:sadly funny (1)

ThorGod (456163) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621895)

If he'd said "The God Delusion" by Dawkins you might have a point in what you said, but since he was talking about "The Selfish Gene", which doesn't talk about gods or religion at all, but is very illuminating about how life works and why creatures do what they do, the point is just at the top of your cap.

Yeah, it's still only one book/author. I'd like MOAR references for books he doesn't define as "mostly forgettable".

The real crux is that he said he can't think of any books that really made a difference to his world view:

I read a fair amount, but I have to admit that for me reading tends to be about escapism, and books to me are mostly forgettable

Really, I'm just curious how wide/broadly read he is. No ding on atheism or Dawkins implied. Linus is one really interesting person in current times, and if he's painfully centered on his field then that's relevant.

NAS hater (1)

Sloppy (14984) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620765)

Sure, maybe those rotating platters are ok in some NAS box that you keep your big media files on (or in that cloud storage cluster you use, and where the network latencies make the disk latencies be secondary), but in an actual computer? Ugh.

Hey Linus, guess what's my favorite kernel to run on that NAS computer? Yours. And yes, it is an "actual computer." Sorry if it's not sexy enough for ya.

Re:NAS hater (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620795)

Your virginity is showing.

Re:NAS hater (5, Funny)

Sloppy (14984) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621029)

Yeah, the chicks are all into low-latency/high-throughput. They want to watch their 20 gigabyte movie files in 12 seconds (with the first NFS reply coming less than 5ms after the request) and my computer can't serve it that fast! So they all go over to Linus' house, with his flashy SSDs and .. oooh, it makes me so mad.

Can we cut the cr*p ?!?!? (0, Offtopic)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620787)

This is the internet, not TV, so we can say fuck and crap and shit etc when we want to.
 
In the very least saying f*ck and cr*p and sh*t is disingenuous as you are trying to hide that you are actually saying fuck and crap and shit, yet everyone knows that is exactly what you are saying.
 
So either say it, or if you think the words are unpalatable then think of some other words to use in their place.

Re:Can we cut the cr*p ?!?!? (1)

shentino (1139071) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621195)

It's a good way to express your mood without personally attacking the audience.

Re:Can we cut the cr*p ?!?!? (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621399)

Some people have to worry about work. Places of employment sometimes place filters to shield themselves from lawsuits which will look for words and either block the page entirely or flag it for a followup by HR.

A well disciplined public speaker will take that into consideration in their speech. In some cases, someone else would do it for them in something like this where the speech or answers to questions are written. If your communications are in a way that constantly endangers part of your audience, you will lose part of your audience. If using * allows children to continue being interested in Linux because their parents aren't upset over the language or suspicious of the content because of it or if it allows the work place to be somewhat free to view/read the comments, it's worth doing.

It's not disingenuous, it's being polite and respectful of your potential audience.

Re:Can we cut the cr*p ?!?!? (1)

Raenex (947668) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621737)

It's not disingenuous, it's being polite and respectful of your potential audience.

If he really wanted to be polite and respectful to his audience, he would replacing "fucking morons" with "stupid", or do away with the insult entirely and just focus on the argument. Words like "f*ck" are a lame copout.

One overriding idea (5, Insightful)

concealment (2447304) | about a year and a half ago | (#41620921)

I found this part insightful beyond technology:

Btw, it's not just microkernels. Any time you have "one overriding idea", and push your idea as a superior ideology, you're going to be wrong. Microkernels had one such ideology, there have been others. It's all BS. The fact is, reality is complicated, and not amenable to the "one large idea" model of problem solving. The only way that problems get solved in real life is with a lot of hard work on getting the details right. Not by some over-arching ideology that somehow magically makes things work.

If you have "one overriding idea," you've made that idea the part of your thinking that serves as your reality-check, not reality itself as your reality-check. Great point, Linus, and one that I constantly encounter in completely non-tech-related fields.

Re:One overriding idea (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621345)

Well, I found this a bit disenhearting considering the big genius idea behind UNIX is that everything is a file.
Restrictions breed creativity and dismissing such a potent design tool is a big generalisation mistake IMO.

Re:One overriding idea (3, Informative)

gman003 (1693318) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621923)

No, that was the big genius idea behind Plan 9. UNIX saw that, took the ideas that worked (like procfs) and used them, but skipped the less useful ideas (doesn't Plan 9 have a pseudo-file for each window?).

The overarching idea behind UNIX is "whatever". Name any "big genius idea behind UNIX" and I'll point to a dozen counterexamples.

Re:One overriding idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621517)

true, but then he contradicts himself a couple questions later.

If he truly believed what he said, he never would have designed Git. The Git design takes exactly that approach that he says he doesn't like, that there is a much better way of doing things, based on a completely different way of modeling the problem. He happened to be right in my opinion, and Git works great.

However, if he was consistent, he would have said that attempting to redefine the general architecture of a good SCM was for morons and would never work, and people should just realize that the problem is just really, really hard, and should spend their time trying to make svn merges better by getting the details right.

Of course, he didn't argue that, he argued that SVN was taking a fundamentally flawed approach an no amount of 'details' would ever make it work right. Better to have the Big Idea. He didn't see it as a 'big Idea', maybe, but few people who have a big idea se it as a big idea. They just see it as the logical way to do things.

The truth is that sometimes there _is_ a much simpler way of looking at the problem, and sometimes it is based on a big idea. Sometimes that fresh approach works wonderfully, like Git, and everyone wonders how we muddled along without it, and sometimes the big idea doesn't and ends up being more trouble than it was worth.

Both approaches take hard work, but sometimes the hard work is worth it, and sometimes it just makes the problem worse; the genius is in knowing which is which.

Re:One overriding idea (1)

Raenex (947668) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621765)

If you have "one overriding idea,"

Like "everything is an object" in Git?

yay, pointers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41620941)

While cool, they seems to be the source of a whole lot of security and stability issues...

Re:yay, pointers... (4, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621179)

They're a fundamental part of low-level programming, which is exactly what an operating system is.

For higher-level programming, you're right that you're probably better off with languages that don't need you to explicitly manage them, like Java and Python. But at some point, you have to get to something that deals with the hardware, and you really can't do that without using pointers.

Good quote (5, Insightful)

rasmusbr (2186518) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621019)

This bit by Linus is easily one of the best and most concise quotes about problem-solving that I've read. Any sot of 'manifesto' about programming or engineering in general that does not have a caveat along these lines as one of its tenets is extremely flawed.

"The fact is, reality is complicated, and not amenable to the "one large idea" model of problem solving. The only way that problems get solved in real life is with a lot of hard work on getting the details right. Not by some over-arching ideology that somehow magically makes things work."

Re:Good quote (1)

smooth wombat (796938) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621235)

I've said similar things when people talk about grand plans for projects, and yet, somehow, their plans never come out right because they're more interested in the procedure than if the work is getting done.

If I happen to get an interview for a job I recently applied for, I will try to work that quote, or part of it, into an answer or two. It's the head of a small department dealing with projects, so it should be easy.

Re:Good quote (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621453)

Yeah, Linus should be praising George Polya for this. Not only does he rip off Dennis Ritchie he's also ripping off George Polya now and fanbois are praising his ass for it. I just love Linuxland.

Re:Good quote (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621683)

"The fact is, reality is complicated, and not amenable to the "one large idea" model of problem solving. The only way that problems get solved in real life is with a lot of hard work on getting the details right. Not by some over-arching ideology that somehow magically makes things work."

As a counterexample, what about relational databases and SQL conquering all that went before it (for 20-25 years, anyways, until XML and then the Big Data wave hit).

Summary Responses: (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621197)

1. Because I felt like it.
2. Because I felt like it.
3. Because I felt like it.
4. Because I felt like it.
5. Because I felt like it. :-)

Slashvertisement (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41621591)

Always good to see another Slashvertisement for the Apple MacBook Air. Very subtle this time.

Oddly.. not enjoying the read (-1, Flamebait)

AdmV0rl0n (98366) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621735)

I personally disliked a couple of pointed things he said. The first was spindle bashing. Its not that I dislike SSDs per se, but I've run a heap of them over an extended term. My take on them is they have got much faster, but their lifespan has shortened. SSD death is far too common for my liking. And the size and value of HDD over SSD remains what it was. For me, bluntly SSD has not matched what was written on the tin, and I am really really disliking the early death in use. Its almost become perverse to a point where if I have to run IO heavy stuff, and I know its going to have a long life, I am not using SSD unless speed is a paramount primary concern. And in that case I have to spec for short burn lifespan. No, I can't take his view that one tech holds a definitive superiority over the other. Not so far at any rate.

And the thin and light blurb. No Linus, I actually happen to like a big screen. And I like dual drives, a DVD drive/Blue ray, and decent speakers. Add in a real GPU and chunky CPU and RAM mean I have a real actual PC worth a shit. The worst fucking thing ever to happen to PCs - and I really mean this, the worst thing to ever happen has been the netbook and now the garbage ultrabook cretinous stupidity. These are all either horribly hobbled, or massively over priced piles of steaming garbage. Usually vaguely the spec of the previous gen 'business' notebook in the case of ultrabooks, thrown in a thinner chassis, with a mild refresh, and crippled thermals and perfornance.

If I want a fairly crippled system - I can go get one based on an ARM platform that is in actual fact thinner. And its better on battery if thats all you care about. I'm not against thin and light. Those models have always been around, and frankly always had a premium price tag. But if this is to become the platform that is the PC, its deservedly dead man walking, and good riddance.

*Sales of netbooks and Ultrabooks speak in more volume on this matter than my spiel.

Trying to play to a strength you do not possess isn't listed in an book of clever plays. And dropping your areas where you have strength for them is a baffling outcome.
I'll add one last thing. For both the PC and for Linux - currently it sits at the end of a cycle in 'gaming; culture where the PC is at a zenith. There is no more powerful gaming platform today than PC. But it has to actually be powerful. The PC could regererate in short order into a full blown game platform, but its not going to do that on ultrabook, netbook or garbage books. And its sat right now at the potential bottom of the curve, because PS3 and XBox are landing at the bottom of their curve, and you can see this clearly in game development circles. If all the vendors simply ship ultrabooks, then they deserve to die. (and they are, PC shipments are falling.)

Make stuff people want, and you need a reason for it to be bought. Simply being shit like your last PC but thinner is as shit a reason as there has ever been.

Glad there's a team (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year and a half ago | (#41621945)

So many of the answers took the form, "that use doesn't fit my personal needs, so people who have those needs are crazy/uncool/idiots." It's very good that Linux is now in a position to ensure quality code, not decide on what code will be included.

He also needs to do a bit more refactoring on

that whole "using the law for harassment" in the US is a separate issue independent of the copyright issues.

if he thinks there's a non-fragile way to implement such a system. Or, even better, do a git and find the primitives that would allow such a system - nobody else in history has managed to do so, but that only makes the odds of success highly unlikely, not necessarily impossible.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...