Geek Of The Week: Richard Stallman

Geek Of The Week: Richard Stallman

Many of you are probably asking… who is Richard Stallman? In a nutshell, he is the reason we have free software today. He is largely responsible for the popularity of the Linux operating system (including Linux-based derivatives like Android), and the open source community. If it wasn’t for him, you’d probably be paying for every piece of software you use on a daily basis.

Richard Stallman, a former computer programmer (who avidly believes that software should be openly distributed), is considered the father of open source software (OSS).  In 1983, he launched the GNU project to create a free Unix-like operating system. This project eventually adopted the Linux kernel, written by Linus Torvalds, in 1991. Stallman also initiated the Free Software Movement, and founded the Free Software Foundation (FSF).

Throughout the 1990’s, the FSF lobbied for free software, often taking on large corporations and enduring lots of backlash. In every case, Stallman was at the helm, steering the ship. Fortunately, every bit of negativity from the “corporate machine”, was met with praise from his fans and followers. Stallman is simply a passionate programmer who believes that everyday people should be able to use, modify, and redistribute great software without having to pay royalties. His actions have made a huge difference in the world of technology. Free software seems somewhat normal today, but there was a time when people thought it would never happen. We have the FSF to thank for that.

On behalf of the Geek Trio, and everyone who uses free software… THANKS RICHARD!

About the Author

avatar KALE: A geek who works in the IT field and lives in Dallas, TX. He is also a music geek who has played in several local bands. Previous to his IT career, Kale worked as a photojournalist. He brings technical advice and artistic counterpoint to the podcast.