2002 Linux Symposium
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Keynote: Dr. Stephen Tweedie

Dr. Stephen Tweedie Red Hat is one of our Keynote Speakers for 2002.

Stephen has been a Linux kernel hacker since early 1993, when he started helping with ext2 development, and he has worked on various parts of the kernel since, especially on filesystems and the VM. He has a background in clustered computing: he did a Ph.D. on high-performance parallel computing and then worked for Digital on the VMS cluster filesystems, and now works for Red Hat on kernel work and enterprise computing. He wrote and maintains the ext3 journaled filesystem.

Changes and Choices

Linux has come an incredible distance in its short lifetime. We have seen dramatic change in its power and performance, and it now runs on machines that nobody ever thought it could ever work on when it was in its early stages. Outside the kernel, the number of applications available for Linux has been rising steadily each year and is currently taking off in a number of markets, and Linux has given vigour to projects such as Gnome and KDE which have transformed the way Linux looks to the average user.

Stephen will give a personal perspective on just how far we have come in this time and how significant those changes have been. This rapid pace of development means that the Linux world has to deal with change constantly, and the choices available under Linux can be bewildering: do we want cutting-edge features or stability? Which desktop, and which window manager, and which browser do you want?

To a developer, it's just as complex: in the kernel, the same code can be getting exercised on handheld computers and on mainframes these days: we have come a long way since Linux's early days of "all the world's a PC". The evolution of Linux has seen orders-of-magnitude changes in what the OS has to manage: terabyte disk arrays and gigabytes of memory are not uncommon, and the changes required to make the kernel portable to different architectures and to multiprocessor machines have required internal changes of a scope that would terrify many developers.

He'll talk about some of the most interesting changes from a technical viewpoint, and will also look at the challenges presented by such rapid changes and such an array of choices: choice is at the very heart of how the Linux community works.

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