"So how did this come about? Simple, Microsoft's near monopoly
created the conditions needed for Torvald's strategy to succeed -
because Microsoft's success depended on convincing customers that
frequent adaptation to small changes reduces total risk relative to
significant but infrequent change and resulted in, among many other
things, a trailing cloud of low cost, Linux compatible, hardware
and the resentments needed to motivate use of it.
"Torvalds gets a lot of credit both for being among the first to
exploit open source ideas and for his effective management of the
Linux kernel development process - but I think he should also be
credited for being among the first to see that a second best kernel
design optimized for a third rate processor would offer the right
combination for market success."