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Saturday, May 12, 2012

"Dreaming in Code" - The birth of Open Source

The 20th century heralded the legendary birth of the computer industry.  I would like to dive into some of the details from the book Dreaming in Code, which I am currently reading with much joy, on the birth of open-source.

America saw the computer industry as lucrative, and Bill Gates surely founded Microsoft with such capitalist intent.  It helped popularize computers to the commercial level, and surely, there would've only been one direction had it not been for Linus Torvalds.  Born in Poland, Torvalds didn't believe he could make a difference in the world.  In that unsettled mind of his, he felt one shimmer of hope, a vision, that perhaps software should be free and a product of collaboration, removed from the clutches of evil capitalism.  His project started at the local level... by the nineties, it became a global phenomena to prospective and flowering developers alike.

His motivation was simply unprecedented.  To this day, the computer industry went two pronged ways, each with its own intention.  Innovation, according to Torvalds, didn't rest in the hands of a group within a corporation deciding the future of the software for themselves, but in the global community, in which any one can lend a hand with at least an ounce of willingness.

Now here is Ubuntu, a product of near a decade of community effort.  Looks as if the open-source movement hasn't lost its cadence just yet.


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