16 interviews with Linux Kernel hackers

Last updated Nov 14, 2008 — 26140 views

The Linux Foundation has published a series of video interviews from the annual Linux Kernel Summit held Sept. 15-16 in Portland, Oregon. In the videos, 16 developers — including Linux creator Linus Torvalds (shown at left) — discuss their development activities.

The Kernel Summit is an annual invitation-only meeting during which kernel developers discuss the current state of the Linux kernel and plans for future development.

Below are links to the 16 kernel developer interviews from the Summit. Each is 5-10 minutes in length, and is available for viewing in Ogg and Flash formats. Click each developer’s name to watch the a video.

  • Linus Torvalds of The Linux Foundation – speaks about the Linux Kernel Summit and shares his thoughts on kernel quality, regressions and the state of the current release cycle. He also shares his thoughts on userland tools and the Git development community.
  • Rafael Wysocki of Novell – discusses his presentation on regressions, the importance of getting more kernel developers involved in the regression mailing list and the importance of testing.
  • Chris Mason of Oracle – shares his thoughts on the benefits of the Linux Kernel Summit, the filesystem and reporting workshop, the importance of file systems to Linux users, BtrFS (Butter FS) and Oracle’s involvement within the Linux community.
  • Greg Kroah-Hartman of Novell – shares his thoughts on the current Kernel release cycle and how it impacts enterprise releases. He also discusses his work with the staging server, the Linux Driver Project and the importance of the Linux Plumbers’ Conference.
  • Paul Mackerras of IBM – talks about Patchwork, a web-based system that creates an interactive webpage that lists all patches and corresponding comments to allow for easy review and filtering. He also discusses the implementation of the tool by other maintainers for their projects.
  • John Linville of Red Hat – speaks about his experience at the Kernel Summit and summarizes the state of wireless LAN networking in Linux and the importance of supporting vendors that are more “open.”
  • Stephen Rothwell of IBM – Stephen talks about his work on the Linux-next tree, the process he follows when making a release, the benefits to core maintainers and the challenges involved in maintaining the tree.
  • Kristen Accardi of Intel – talks about the Linux Plumbers’ Conference, the evolution of Linux conferences and about open source development being a viable career option for students.
  • Dirk Hohndel of Intel – speaks about the past, present and future of the Kernel Summit. He also discusses the importance of open-sourcing drivers and the benefits having drivers be part of the “upstream.”
  • Dave Jones of Red Hat – talks about unifying boot time tools for the Linux kernel, his presentation on speeding up boot time and what can be done to improve interaction between the userspace and kernel communities.
  • David Miller of Red Hat – speaks about the state of Linux and Linux networking and his experience speaking at Linux Symposium Japan.
  • Len Brown of Intel – provides an update on Linux power management, how close we are to parity with other operating systems and how developers can get involved with power management through testing and bug submissions.
  • Frank Eigler of Red Hat – speaks about the SystemTap, a tool for systems administrators that lets them see what is happening in a running kernel. He also shares his experience as a first-time attendee of the Kernel Summit and the feedback he received from the core maintainers.
  • Jon Corbet of LWN.net – talks about the his involvement with the Kernel Summit, Linux 3.0, the state of documentation and the growth of the Linux kernel community and the shifting demographic as involvement becomes more global.

A detailed report on what took place at the Summit can be found here.

Lots of interesting insights into the status and future of Linux!

About the Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation describes itself as: “…a nonprofit consortium dedicated to fostering the growth of Linux. Founded in 2007, the LF sponsors the work of Linux creator Linus Torvalds and is supported by leading Linux and open source companies and developers from around the world. The Linux Foundation promotes, protects and standardizes Linux by providing unified resources and services needed for open source to successfully compete with closed platforms.”

[Note: The list above was extracted from an article on the Linux Foundation website, which was released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.]

5 responses to “16 interviews with Linux Kernel hackers”

  1. andrew bartelt says:

    found this via twitter on my iPhone. Was excited because you mentioned YouTube format which I can view using my iPhone. I went to the site and only saw flv and ogg format. Where is the YouTube?

    Reply from DeviceGuru: Sorry, my error. There aren’t any YouTube videos.

  2. ed neville says:

    Excellent set of videos guys

  3. Phil Lewis says:

    every time i have gotten a video from youtube it has been a .flv

  4. Tony says:

    Nice videos, it’s good to get an insight into the cooperation between different groups of devs

    Btw, typo on Dirk Hohndel’s banner
    “Cheif Linux and open……”

  5. Accessibility Matters says:

    Any chance of some transcripts, for the benefit of hackers with hearing impairments?

    Reply from DeviceGuru: Not that I’m aware of. You might try contacting the Linux Foundation to see if they’ve produced transcripts, but I suspect they won’t have.