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The Kernel Panel at LinuxCon Europe

Oct 29, 2011, 18:00 (0 Talkback[s])

"Linus Torvalds and other kernel developers sat down for a question and answer session at the first LinuxCon Europe. Lennart Poettering, creator of PulseAudio and systemd, served as moderator for the panel, which consisted of Torvalds, Alan Cox, Thomas Gleixner, and Paul McKenney. The four took prepared questions from Poettering, as well as responding to impromptu audience member questions on every topic from version numbers to the future of the kernel project itself.

Torvalds added that he used to keep ancient binaries around — including the very first shells written for Linux, which used APIs that were deprecated within months — to test against each new kernel release, just to make sure that old code continued to run. API stability is important, he said, but it flows out of not breaking the user experience. "No project is more important than the users of that project," he summarized.

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