Trivia

Hard

After Whom Is The Linux Operating System Named?

Leonardo da Vinci
Linus Torvalds
Lineaus Henderson
Linus Pauling

Answer: Linus Torvalds

In 1991, while attending the University of Helsinki, a young Linus Torvalds became both increasingly curious about the guts of operating systems and frustrated with the licensing limitations placed on them. It was there he began work on a Unix-like operating system he called Freax (a combination of “free”, “freak” and the letter “X” to indicate it was a Unix-like system).

What we now know as Linux would have gone down in history as Freax if not for his friend Ari Lemmke. Lemmke operated the server that hosted early Linux kernels and he named Torvalds’s directory “linux”, presumably shorthand for Linus’s Unix.

Linux grew in popularity over the next two decades and, in the process, went from being an operating system for computer hobbyists to serving in everything from embedded systems, to smart phones, to super computers. Although you may not use Linux as your desktop operating system, you–most likely without even realizing it–come in contact with it on a daily basis.

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