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Linux Journal: An Interview with Drew Eckhardt [Kernel Developer]

Jul 01, 2000, 18:34 (0 Talkback[s])

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"Linux Journal: How did you first learn about Linux? What were you doing in your own life at the time?

Drew Eckhardt: I saw a Usenet posting from Linus along the lines of "I've thrown together this Minix-like system to teach myself about the i86 architecture. You guys might want to check it out ..." I was an 18-year-old student studying computer science at the University of Colorado. One condition attached to my Woz scholarship was working for the university as a jack-of-all-trades system administrator, with Evi Nemeth as my boss. She gave me a login, told me about the man command, explained sudo, and let me loose with root access in the CU-CS undergraduate lab. It didn't take long for me to decide that UNIX was hacker friendly -- "hacker" in the classical meaning of cobbling bits and pieces together in an elegant manner to make them do interesting things."

"LJ: What part of Linux were you personally interested in and working on? How are you still involved with Linux development?

Drew: The SCSI subsystem. And, no. As I began playing with more interesting projects professionally, I no longer had a void that needed filling in my spare time. Developing for the Linux kernel and user lands would also be too close to what I do at work (proprietary FreeBSD VFS code and user-land system software). The few UNIX hacks I've thrown together at home have been under FreeBSD because of the more coherent build process.

LJ: What was most important to you about Linux? What's the very best thing about Linux?

Drew: It was an opportunity to play with an interesting non-trivial software project. The best thing about Linux is the size of the community, because of the number of programmers within it who've contributed device drivers and user-land ports."

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