Session:Imagine a World Without Linux

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Session Details

ELCE 2011
October 26, 2011
Jim Zemlin
The Linux Foundation
here (free-electrons)


Transcribed by
Florian Mösch,

(From the free-electrons video)

0:00 - 1:00: >> JIM ZEMLIN: Welcome to LinuxCon Europe, our first event, and the Embedded Linux Conference Europe. I have to apologize. We have had a lot more people come to the event than we expected, so I see a lot of people standing over there. But the good news is that the interest in Linux is bigger than ever and I think that's why so many people have come here today to be a part of this. So I want to thank all of you for for attending. I want to thank also our sponsors who are making the event possible. In particular our platinum sponsors Intel and Qualcom without which we couldn't do this event. Also for the Embedded Linux Conference Europe, I want to thank in particular Sony who is the platinum sponsor of that event.

1:00 - 2:00: I also like so specifically thank the folks from Linux Congress who are our program and content partners this year. The folks from Linux Congress do a really good job helping us has made this event possible. So thanks to all of you from Linux Congress. I have a couple of quick announcements before we start. Tonight we have an evening event at the oldest brewery in the Czech Republic, the New Fleku Brewery. As with all Linux Foundation events, it will be free as in beer. So please come to tonight's event. There will be free food and free beer for everyone. Buses depart at 6:15 and 7 o'clock tonight downstairs. Also we have a mobile app for the event. You can go and download it from the Android marketplace or if you really have to, you can get it from the iTunes appstore. [laughter] It's free and it has a conference guide in that will tell you updates on all the things going on at the event.

2:00 - 3:00: I also have a few news items that I want to share with you today from the Linux Foundation. The first thing I want to announce is a new project that we are kicking off this week here in Europe. It's called the long term support initiative. This is a group of members of the Linux Foundation that decided to get together in the consumer electronics industry and share some of the work that is done on using a long term stable kernel that can help them make products quicker and faster. Most of these folks are doing a lot of engineering work by themselves that they can easily share and the long term support initiative will help them maintain a common kernel that they can use in the marketplace. So check that out. There's going to be some sessions this evening and its a pretty good line of the folks from really some of the biggest names in consumer electronics.

3:00 - 4:00: Also we are announcing today the release of yocto projects 1.1 version. This has really become a cool project very quickly that is now being used by a lot of embedded an consumer product companies to actually build real products for the real marketplace. So as you recall, we announced this last year, but it has really gained attraction recently. And if you have not checked it out yet, you should really go to the yocto booth out here and check out the 1.1 release of the yocto project. Finally, I'd like to welcome a dozen of our newest members from Europe to the Linux Foundation. One thing that I want to point out is, that even though I live in California and Linus Torvalds lives in Portland, Linux and the Linux Foundation are really a global phenomenon. There really is no borders, when it comes to Linux.

4:00 - 5:00: I am really excited to see more organizations and all of you as individuals participating in the Linux Foundation and in the movement that is Linux. So: thank you and welcome to the Linux Foundation. And so with that I thought of what I would talk to all of you today about is - on the 20th anniversary of Linux - what the world would be like if there was no Linux. What kind of a place would it be if 20 years ago, Linus Torvalds never got started with Linux - decided, he had better things to do. I don't want to give you any ideas in this, but - what if Linux had never happened. [blue screen] What kind of world would we [laughter] live - wait a second. [Windows boot screen] Oh - come on, guys. [laughter]

5:00 - 6:00: All right - so. What would it be like if there was no linux in the world? What kind of place would it be? [blue screen] What kind of things would happen? Guys - come on. You got to be kidding me. [Windows boot screen] All right. Well I can start it in about 20 minutes here. [laughter] So - seriously - what would the world be like without Linux? By the way, does anybody know what happens during the reboot, in the windows reboot process? It takes so long. I was wondering - like what was actually going on? Well it turns out that Microsoft actually has patented this process. Here is the patent: Number 15 Million 999. That's what's going on inside. But what would the world look like without Linux? Well, I can tell you. Everything would be in black and white. The world without Linux would be an absolutely terrible place.

6:00 - 7:00: It would be dark and grim. And we would have some terrible consequences without Linux. First of all: Stocks would stop trading. More than 75 per cent - as you just heard - of the global financial trading systems run on Linux. And that number keeps going up every day. Trains would stop running. Air traffic control systems, train control systems - all run on Linux. Special effects would be terrible. Wait, but - to all the Japanese, I'm doing my apologize. [laughter] But - you know - all the Hollywood special effects, movies like Avatar, all the digital effects you see are build on huge Linux clusters. You wouldn't be able to find anything on the internet without Linux. Google runs on Linux.

7:00 - 8:00: It would be even worse than. You wouldn't be able to buy any books! Amazon runs on Linux. And finally you would have no friends. [laughter] Facebook also runs on Linux. You wouldn't be able to fast forward through TV commercials. Almost all modern DVR devices, they run on Linux. And finally: Nuclear submarines might go crazy and the world could come to an end. Nuclear submarines run on Linux. Its a really important role that Linux plays in the world and it would certainly be dark without Linux. And what's interesting is, even though that didn't happen, the world isn't that terrible, many people predicted this dark and evil world.

8:00 - 9:00: So I thought - on the 20th anniversary of Linux - it might be worth looking back on some of the predictions, people made about Linux over many years. Here are a fer. The first one, from Bil Gates. You know; look at this quote. But when you say to people - do you understand the GPL? - than they're pretty stunned when the Pac-Man-like nature at it is described to them. And I thought about this quote. This is from back in 2001. When Bil Gates said, Linux has in the GPL license a Pac-Man-like nature, what was he talking about? Pac-Man? I played a lot of Pac-Man, and I didn't figure it out. Then finally, it dawned on me. This is what he meant. [laughter] He saw a market forecast for Linux.

9:00 - 10:00: So it all made sense to me. But he wasn't the only one. Here is another prediction. Does anybody remember SCO? Anyone? So this guy, the CEO of the SCO group, he said - listen: everyone says we are going out of business - right - but once they have their day in court, when the SCO group has their day in court, people are going to see we are right. And you know - what is funny about that - is, the SCO group actually did have their day in court. They went to court, and they did some things, but unfortunately for SCO, their day in court was a bankruptcy hearing where they filed chapter eleven and basically went out of business. [applause] Yes. All right. (?) for SCOs demise. Yes.

10:00 - 11:00: But - it wasn't just the SCO group or Bill Gates. There is lots of people who criticized. You know - some times it was for legal reasons as with SCO, sometimes it was for business reasons. In this case, Craig Mundie, this is my favorite, this is again back from 2001, he said that - you know - open source, that type of development - you know - maybe it has a role somewhere. But, no one is ever going to use Linux to create a mass market product. Something powerful, something easy to use, something broadly accessible to consumers. Like Linux, open source, you could never do it. You would never be able to use Linux to produce something that would sell thousands and thousands of products to consumers every day. Right? Well, it turns out you can.

11:00 - 12:00: Google is activating 550000 Android devices which use Linux every single day. It is unbelievable, how easy it is to use any Android Linux based device. Or one of the many other devices based on Linux that are out there in the consumer electronic place. Televisions, DVRs, that things. But listen, if it's not usability ans if it's not legal fad - well - Linux will never succeed as a business. This is one of my favorites. This is from a market analyst in the United States. He predicted that this company Red Hat - does anybody here work for Red Hat ? few Red Hat people here - well I mean, look at the company: right? Limited resources, limited engineering talent, you Red Hat guys are not that good. [laughter]

12:00 - 13:00: Serious IP issues. Right? Could never succeed as a business. Well, it turns out Red Hat not only succeeded. Red Hat is going to break a billion dollars in revenue this year. All right. [applause] I tell you, today it's an eight - nine billion dollar company. This is a company that will do a billion dollars in revenue this year solely based on open-source software. That really is impressive and it really shows how wrong predictions about Linux were. But this is my favorite one. This is my favorite one. Steve Ballmer. He just can not be taught. [laughter] It's a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual sense to everything it touches.

13:00 - 14:00:

14:00 - 15:00:

15:00 - 15:45:

15:45 - 16:45: [video Microsoft vs. Linux]

16:45 - 17:00:

17:00 - 18:00:

18:00 - 19:00:

19:00 - 20:00: And the primary reason Linux succeeds - it is is because it represents one enduring quality that's bigger than all of us. In 20 years we have seen everything. Predictions, legal fad, business models - you know - sort of being questioned. But one thing has endured the entire time. One thing lasts forever. And that's Freedom. Freedom is what matters. Freedom is why Linux is so successful. The Freedom to take the source-code, do whatever you want with it, share it with your friends. Those ideas are important. And those ideas have affected all of mankind. And I think, one of the best examples of this idea being on the right side of history can be seen in a video that I'd love to show.

20:00 - 20:20: It came from IBM when they first announced their support for Linux. And I think it's worth looking back 10 years ago and seeing how the same concepts of freedom and openness and learning still exist and endure today. Let's take a look.

20:20 - 21:45: [video IBM Linux Commercial]

21:45 - 22:00: The future is open. And that quality will live with us all forever even beyond our own lives as individuals.

22:00 - 23:00: Because Linux isn't just about the ten thousand lines of code that are added every day. It's not about the ten billion dollar investment that Linux represents. It's not about the five thousand lines of code that are subtracted every day with a nearly three million lines of code that are created every year with Linux. It's bigger than that. It's about a concept of collaborative development. And none of you are smarter than anyone else in the room and that together we are smarter than all of us. And that hasn't just created the worlds greatest collaborative development project which is Linux. It has created more than that. It's created an entire concept of how to innovate. It's started an entire school of thought.

23:00 - 24:00: It's proven that this is a better way to create new products. To create new fields of science and industry. It's gone beyond software into pharmaceuticals and manufacturing and mining and all sorts of other industries. It's created a shamra (?) of literature, of literally hundreds of academic books written on the topic. And that's what really matters, is that all of you - by participating in Linux - are part of something that will last forever. Something that has made the world a better place. Sure, we might flame each other in e-mail wars. Or we might argue over certain things. But I think that we can all agree - on the 20th anniversary of Linux: What we've done here has made the world a better place.

24:00 - 25:00: The world isn't black and white. The world is a far better place, a far more colorful place, thanks to the work of all of you. So, congratulations to you guys on the 20th anniversary of Linux. Happy anniversary to all of you. Thank you. [applause] So we've got that on this 20th anniversary if we weren't bringing up the guys that started that all, and hear directly from the source what's going on in the Linux kernel and Linux kernel development. I'd like to bring on stage our kernel panel.