Rebel Code: Linux And The Open Source Revolution (Google eBook)
The open source saga has many fascinating chapters. It is partly the story of Linus Torvalds, the master hacker who would become chief architect of the Linux operating system. It is also the story of thousands of devoted programmers around the world who spontaneously worked in tandem to complete the race to shape Linux into the ultimate killer app. Rebel Code traces the remarkable roots of this unplanned revolution. It echoes the twists and turns of Linux's improbable development, as it grew through an almost biological process of accretion and finally took its place at the heart of a jigsaw puzzle that would become the centerpiece of open source. With unprecedented access to the principal players, Moody has written a powerful tale of individual innovation versus big business. Rebel Code provides a from-the-trenches perspective and looks ahead to how open source is challenging long-held conceptions of technology, commerce, and culture.
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I'm currently on page 250 and, although I am reading this for a class assignment (from a selection of books), I strongly feel that not only should this be required reading for any computer science major, but for anyone interested in getting involved with open source software. Although it is a number of years outdated at this point, the facts as they are in the book gives a strong foundation for understanding why certain people and organizations are the way they are today. This goes doubly so for anyone wanting to start and/or commercialize an open source project themselves.