Do you pine for the days when men were men and wrote their own device drivers?

林纳斯·本纳第克特·托瓦兹 芬兰语Linus Benedict Torvalds,1969年11月28日),是一位电脑程式设计师,Linux内核的发明人。


  • I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones.
  • I can (well, almost) hear you asking yourselves 'why?'. Hurd will be out in a year (or two, or next month, who knows), and I've already got minix.
    • Torvalds, Linus. Post to comp.os.minix. 1991-10-05 [2006-08-28]. 
    • Notes: The Hurd 0.0 was released in August 1996 and as of 2009, is still not complete.
  • 我的名字是 Linus Torvalds,而且我是你们的上帝。
    • Jokingly introducing himself, at the 1998 Linux Expo in Durham, North Carolina, as quoted in Under the Radar : How Red Hat Changed the Software Business — and Took Microsoft by Surprise (1999) by Robert Young and Wendy Goldman Rohm, p. 111; also quoted in Just for Fun : The Story of an Accidental Revolutionary (2001) by Linus Torvalds and David Diamond
  • Do you pine for the days when men were men and wrote their own device drivers?
    • Torvalds, Linus and David Diamond. Just for Fun: The Story of an Accidental Revolutionary. Collins. 2001. 
    • Notes: Announcing Linux version 0.02 [ibid]
  • Your problem has nothing to do with git, and everything to do with emacs. And then you have the _gall_ to talk about "unix design" and not gumming programs together, when you yourself use the most gummed-up piece of absolute sh*t there is!
很多人和我说那只肥企鹅不足以代表 Linux,我说他们只是从未见过愤怒的企鹅以超过时速100哩的速度冲向他们…
  • The main reason there are no raw devices [in Linux] is that I personally think that raw devices are a stupid idea.
  • 很多人和我说那只肥企鹅不足以代表 Linux,我说他们只是从未见过愤怒的企鹅以超过时速100哩的速度冲向他们。它们会很在意他们曾说过的话。
  • 只有无能的人才会使用磁带备份︰“真正”的男人就会把他们重要的东西上传到 w:FTP 上,剩下的就让全世界来做镜像 ;)
  • …Linux 的哲学是“在面对危险时放声大笑”。哎哟,不是这句。“自己动手解决”,这句才对。
  • Note that nobody reads every post in linux-kernel. In fact, nobody who expects to have time left over to actually do any real kernel work will read even half. Except Alan Cox, but he's actually not human, but about a thousand gnomes working in under-ground caves in Swansea. None of the individual gnomes read all the postings either, they just work together really well.
There are literally several levels of SCO being wrong. And even if we were to live in that alternate universe where SCO would be right, they'd still be wrong.
  • I'm a bastard. I have absolutely no clue why people can ever think otherwise. Yet they do. People think I'm a nice guy, and the fact is that I'm a scheming, conniving bastard who doesn't care for any hurt feelings or lost hours of work, if it just results in what I consider to be a better system. And I'm not just saying that. I'm really not a very nice person. I can say "I don't care" with a straight face, and really mean it.
  • My personal opinion of Mach is not very high. Frankly, it's a piece of crap. It contains all the design mistakes you can make, and even managed to make up a few of its own.
    • Torvalds, Linus and David Diamond. Just for Fun: The Story of an Accidental Revolutionary. Collins. 2001. 
  • You see. I don't think any new thoughts. I think thoughts that other people have thought, and I rearrange them. But Sara, she thinks thoughts that never were before.
    • Torvalds, Linus and David Diamond. Just for Fun: The Story of an Accidental Revolutionary. Collins. 2001. 
    • Torvalds to his mother, about his sister
  • Most days I wake up thinking I'm the luckiest bastard alive.
    • Torvalds, Linus and David Diamond. Just for Fun: The Story of an Accidental Revolutionary. Collins. 2001. 
  • 就我个人而言,我对把装置的驱动程式搞的像使用者级的事并“不”感兴趣。他们不是,他们也不会是,微核心就是蠢。
  • They are smoking crack.
  • 说真的,我无意摧毁微软。这只会是个全然意外的副作用。
    • The Way We Live Now: Questions for Linus Torvalds. New York Times. 2003-09-28. 
  • 现在的个人电脑真是可怕。ACPI 的设计在各方面来说都是彻彻底底的失败。如果有任何 Intel 的人听到这些话,而且曾参与 ACPI 并做过些什么的话,在推出新版之前,立刻自行毙掉!
  • There are literally several levels of SCO being wrong. And even if we were to live in that alternate universe where SCO would be right, they'd still be wrong.
  • “回归测试”?那是什么?如果能编译,那就很好!如果能启动,那就完美!
  • 如果有任何人对我说,不能用这个程式!因为那不是开放源始码软体,快去吸 rms 的奶!我没兴趣!我执行的程式 99% 是开放源始码软体,但那是“我的”选择,真该死!
  • 2.6.<odd>: still a stable kernel, but accept bigger changes leading up to it (timeframe: a month or two).
    2.<odd>.x: aim for big changes that may destabilize the kernel for several releases (timeframe: a year or two)
    <odd>.x.x: Linus went crazy, broke absolutely _everything_, and rewrote the kernel to be a microkernel using a special message-passing version of Visual Basic. (timeframe: "we expect that he will be released from the mental institution in a decade or two").
  • I'd like to say that I knew this would happen, that it's all part of the plan for world domination.
  • 谁的心态才正确?我的,那还用说。和我争执的那些人表现的实在很疯狂。(一直到我改变想法的时候,那些人就突然变回正直的国民。我可是很变通的,而非黑白分明。)
  • 换个环境在使用者模式下进行程式设计,他让我“如此”放松。不必在意那些小细节真是美好。
  • I chose 1000 originally partly as a way to make sure that people that assumed HZ was 100 would get a swift kick in the pants.
  • The fact that ACPI was designed by a group of monkeys high on LSD, and is some of the worst designs in the industry obviously makes running it at _any_ point pretty damn ugly.
  • I personally just encourage people to switch to KDE.
    This "users are idiots, and are confused by functionality" mentality of Gnome is a disease. If you think your users are idiots, only idiots will use it. I don't use Gnome, because in striving to be simple, it has long since reached the point where it simply doesn't do what I need it to do.
    Please, just tell people to use KDE.
  • For example, the GPLv2 in no way limits your use of the software. If you're a mad scientist, you can use GPLv2'd software for your evil plans to take over the world ("Sharks with lasers on their heads!!"), and the GPLv2 just says that you have to give source code back. And that's OK by me. I like sharks with lasers. I just want the mad scientists of the world to pay me back in kind. I made source code available to them, they have to make their changes to it available to me. After that, they can fry me with their shark-mounted lasers all they want.
  • I like colorized diffs, but let's face it, those particular color choices will make most people decide to pick out their eyes with a fondue fork.
    And that's not good. Digging in your eye-sockets with a fondue fork is strictly considered to be bad for your health, and seven out of nine optometrists are dead set against the practice.
    So in order to avoid a lot of blind git users, please apply this patch.
  • I will, in fact, claim that the difference between a bad programmer and a good one is whether he considers his code or his data structures more important. Bad programmers worry about the code. Good programmers worry about data structures and their relationships.
  • I claim that Mach people (and apparently FreeBSD) are incompetent idiots.
  • ...even if the Hurd didn't depend on Linux code (and as far as I know, it does, but since I think they have their design heads firmly up their *sses anyway with that whole microkernel thing, I've never felt it was worth my time even looking at their code), I don't believe a religiously motivated development community can ever generate as good code except by pure chance.
    • LKML, September 27, 2006 [2]
  • I'm a huge believer in evolution (not in the sense that "it happened" - anybody who doesn't believe that is either uninformed or crazy, but in the sense "the processes of evolution are really fundamental, and should probably be at least _thought_ about in pretty much any context").
    • LKML, September 28, 2006 [3]
  • It's one of those rare "perfect" kernels. So if it doesn't happen to compile with your config (or it does compile, but then does unspeakable acts of perversion with your pet dachshund), you can rest easy knowing that it's all your own damn fault, and you should just fix your evil ways.
  • So the whole 'We have a list and we're not telling you' should tell you something. Don't you think that if Microsoft actually had some really foolproof patent, they'd just tell us and go, 'nyaah, nyaah, nyaah!'?
  • You try to claim that the GPLv3 causes "More developers", and that, my idiotic penpal, is just crazy talk that you made up.
    • LKML, June 18, 2007 [4]
  • Is "I hope you all die a painful death" too strong?
    • Linus to the hardware manufacturers that refuse to release the specifications of their hardware so they could operate with the Linux kernel.
    • Torvalds, Linus. Linus Torvalds talks future of Linux. 2007-08-22 [2007-08-22]. 
  • C++ is a horrible language. It's made more horrible by the fact that a lot of substandard programmers use it, to the point where it's much much easier to generate total and utter crap with it.
  • C++ is in that inconvenient spot where it doesn't help make things simple enough to be truly usable for prototyping or simple GUI programming, and yet isn't the lean system programming language that C is that actively encourages you to use simple and direct constructs.
  • It's a bird.. It's a plane.. No, it's KernelMan, faster than a speeding bullet, to your rescue. Doing new kernel versions in under 5 seconds flat.. (Linus, in the announcement for 1.3.27)
  • 我认为 Leopard 是一套[比 Windows Vista] 还要好的系统…但是 OS X 在某些部分实在比 Windows 还要糟。他们的档案系统是完全而且彻底的垃圾,必须时时提心吊胆。
  • Nobody should start to undertake a large project. You start with a small _trivial_ project, and you should never expect it to get large. If you do, you'll just overdesign and generally think it is more important than it likely is at that stage. Or worse, you might be scared away by the sheer size of the work you envision. So start small, and think about the details. Don't think about some big picture and fancy design. If it doesn't solve some fairly immediate need, it's almost certainly over-designed. And don't expect people to jump in and help you. That's not how these things work. You need to get something half-way _useful_ first, and then others will say "hey, that _almost_ works for me", and they'll get involved in the project.
  • I think people can generally trust me, but they can trust me exactly because they know they don't _have_ to.
  • Security people are often the black-and-white kind of people that I can't stand. I think the OpenBSD crowd is a bunch of masturbating monkeys, in that they make such a big deal about concentrating on security to the point where they pretty much admit that nothing else matters to them.
  • It's what I call "mental masturbation", when you engage is some pointless intellectual exercise that has no possible meaning.
  • Sometimes "pi = 3.14" is (a) infinitely faster than the "correct" answer and (b) the difference between the "correct" and the "wrong" answer is meaningless. And this is why I get upset when somebody dismisses performance issues based on "correctness". The thing is, some specious value of "correctness" is often irrelevant because it doesn't matter. While performance almost _always_ matters. And I absolutely _detest_ the fact that people so often dismiss performance concerns so readily.
    • Git mailing list, Fri, 8 Aug 2008
  • Yeah. And as Linus once said: most numerical problems today in pure CPU cycles are actually 3D games. {...} It's not "incorrect" to say that you want the result faster, even if that result doesn't match your theoretical models.
  • Me, I just don't care about proprietary software. It's not "evil" or "immoral," it just doesn't matter. I think that Open Source can do better, and I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is by working on Open Source, but it's not a crusade -- it's just a superior way of working together and generating code.
    It's superior because it's a lot more fun and because it makes cooperation much easier (no silly NDA's or artificial barriers to innovation like in a proprietary setting), and I think Open Source is the right thing to do the same way I believe science is better than alchemy. Like science, Open Source allows people to build on a solid base of previous knowledge, without some silly hiding.
    But I don't think you need to think that alchemy is "evil." It's just pointless because you can obviously never do as well in a closed environment as you can with open scientific methods.
  • Well, with a subject like this, I'm afraid I'll have to reply. Apologies to minix-users who have heard enough about linux anyway. I'd like to be able to just "ignore the bait", but ... Time for some serious flamefesting!
  • Well, I probably won't get too good grades even without you: I had an argument (completely unrelated - not even pertaining to OS's) with the person here at the university that teaches OS design. I wonder when I'll learn :)
  • The fact is, there aren't just two sides to any issue, there's almost always a range or responses, and "it depends" is almost always the right answer in any big question.
  • Crying that it's an application bug is like crying over the speed of light: you should deal with *reality*, not what you wish reality was.
  • Theory and practice sometimes clash. And when that happens, theory loses. Every single time.
  • The thing that has always disturbed me about O_DIRECT is that the whole interface is just stupid, and was probably designed by a deranged monkey on some serious mind-controlling substances [*].
  • There are "extremists" in the free software world, but that's one major reason why I don't call what I do "free software" any more. I don't want to be associated with the people for whom it's about exclusion and hatred.
  • Really. Give me *one* reason why it was written in that idiotic way with two different conditionals, and a shiny new nonstandard function that wants particular compiler support to generate even half-way sane code, and even then generates worse code? A shiny function that we have never ever needed anywhere else, and that is just compiler-masturbation.


  • 如果在我著手 Linux 之前已经有可用的 386BSD 的话,Linux 可能就不会出现了。
  • 软体就像性爱;当是自由的时候更好。
    • Attributed to Torvalds at 1996 FSF conference, video showing this phrase in one of Torvalds papers (time code: 48.44)
    • 原话"Software is like sex; it's better when it's free."中“free"一词经常被误译为“免费”。考虑到林纳斯·托瓦兹以及自由软体基金会所倡导的自由软体精神,将"free"译为“自由”更为合理。
  • We all know Linux is great…it does infinite loops in 5 seconds.
    • Linus Torvalds about the superiority of Linux on the Amsterdam Linux Symposium
  • If you want to travel around the world and be invited to speak at a lot of different places, just write a Unix operating system.
  • The memory management on the PowerPC can be used to frighten small children.
  • Ok, I admit it. I was just a front-man for the real fathers of Linux, the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus.
  • Let's put it this way: if you need to ask a lawyer whether what you do is "right" or not, you are morally corrupt. Let's not go there. We don't base our morality on law.
  • “你猜怎么样?轮子一直以来都是圆的,任何想要“重新发明”新轮子的人通常会被视为怪胎。事实是“圆形”对轮子而言就是最简单、最好的形式。这个事实也许很无趣,轮子就是倾向于圆的比方的好,这和“流不流行”一点关系也没有。”
  • Linux 作业系统的唯一受限因素,就是他的使用者。
  • Microsoft 并不邪恶,他们只是制造了非常糟糕的作业系统。
  • 真正的智慧就是避免做多馀事情的能力,而且还能做好工作。
  • 我对虚拟化技术在某些领域上的长处没有任何怀疑。我强烈怀疑的是虚拟化技术对人们的影响。
  • Now, most of you are probably going to be totally bored out of your minds on Christmas day, and here's the perfect distraction. Test 2.6.15-rc7. All the stores will be closed, and there's really nothing better to do in between meals.
  • If you have ever done any security work; and it did not involve the concept of 'network of trust'; it wasn't security work, it was masturbation.
    • Linus at Google talking about GIT
  • First off, I’m actually perfectly well off. I live in a good-sized house, with a nice yard, with deer occasionally showing up and eating the roses (my wife likes the roses more, I like the deer more, so we don’t really mind). I’ve got three kids, and I know I can pay for their education. What more do I need? The thing is, being a good programmer actually pays pretty well; being acknowledged as being world-class pays even better. I simply didn’t need to start a commercial company. And it’s just about the least interesting thing I can even imagine. I absolutely hate paperwork. I couldn’t take care of employees if I tried. A company that I started would never have succeeded -- it’s simply not what I’m interested in! So instead, I have a very good life, doing something that I think is really interesting, and something that I think actually matters for people, not just me. And that makes me feel good. -- 8/15/07 -- http://www.itbusiness.ca/it/client/en/TechGovernment/News.asp?id=44682&PageMem=2 --
  • 电脑就像空调一样:当你开窗(这里的“窗”指Microsoft Windows)的时候就没有用了。
  • 如果微软曾经为Linux提供过应用程序,那就意味着我赢了。[2]
    • If Microsoft ever does applications for Linux it means I've won.
  • We should make it a law all geeks have dates.




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