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Linux and Main: The Linux Kernel as a Periodical Publication

Nov 04, 2002, 23:30 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Rob Landley)


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"...There has been a greater than usual amount of traffic on the Linux kernel mailing list lately having to do with how Linus Torvalds chooses what to include in the official kernel.org kernel. In this post, Rob Landley responded to a suggestion that the kernel is like the Washington Monument, owned by the people, not by those who maintain it. It's more like a publication, and Linus more like an editor, he explains.

"You pay taxes to support the Washington Monument. When's the last time you paid a tax to Linus?

"He's the editor of a periodical publication. A cross between an academic technical journal which people contribute to for professional reasons, and a hobbyist fanzine that people contribute to 'cause it's cool. This is not a new thing, there are real-world precedents for this sort of relationship going back hundreds of years, to the invention of the printing press..."

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