Linux di Mata Ritchie

Yang ini versi Dennis Ritchie, yang diwawancarai oleh Unix.se, tahun 2003. Ritchie menciptakan C, dan menciptakan Unix bersama Thompson.

What do you think about the development of Linux and the BSD variants? Do you think they’ll eventually replace all the proprietary Unix systems?

Dennis Ritchie: As a general phenomenon, I think they’re great, but they suffer from much the same struggles and competition that the proprietary ones did and do. Sun and HP, SGI , IBM, Digital others all have (or had) variants of the same thing– so too do Linux and the BSDs. Their proprietors may have different motivations for producing the variants, of course. And of course each does have its own attractions. There is a kind of brand differentiation, and this is one of the reasons why portability is hard.

Any thoughts about the GNU project? How did you first learn about it?

Dennis Ritchie: I can’t remember when I first learned about it, but a long time ago. The True-GNU philosophy is more extreme than I care for, but it certainly laid a foundation for the current scene, as well as providing real software. The interesting thing is the way that free-software ideas have begun to influence major existing commercial players. At the same time, much of it seems to have to do with recreating things we or others had already done; it seems rather derivative intellectually; is there a dearth of really new ideas? But still, it’s a great satisfaction that so much of it has built on top of a basis we helped to establish.

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