Linux, converged

Linus Torvalds finally surrenders to the SJWs:

Linux creator Linus Torvalds has apologized for years of rants, swearing, and general hostility directed at other Linux developers, saying he’s going to take a temporary break from his role as maintainer of the open source kernel to learn how to behave better.

For many years, Torvalds has been infamous for his expletive-filled, aggressive outbursts on the Linux Kernel Mailing List (LKML), chewing out developers who submit patches that he believes aren’t up to the standards necessary for the kernel. He’s defended this behavior in the face of pushback from other developers, insisting that people being nice to one another was an American ideology.

But that may be coming to an end. In a lengthy email posted to the LKML on Sunday night, Torvalds expressed a change of heart. Taken to task over attacks that he recognizes were “unprofessional and uncalled for,” he says he now recognizes that his behavior was “not OK” and he is “truly sorry.” He’s going to step back from kernel development for a while—something he’s done before while developing the Git source control system—so that he can “get help on how to behave differently.”

It’s not entirely clear what precipitated this change, though Torvalds did mention a little of the backstory. The Linux Maintainer Summit, an invitation-only gathering of around 30 core Linux developers, takes place each year to provide a venue for kernel maintainers to discuss issues around the kernel’s development process. This year’s summit was due to be in Vancouver but was moved earlier this month to Edinburgh after it turned out that Torvalds had mistakenly booked a vacation in Scotland that clashed with the Vancouver event.

This situation presented two options: stay in Vancouver without Torvalds or move to Edinburgh with Torvalds. Torvalds himself preferred the first option, but this idea was met with resistance, suggesting that Torvalds’ behavior, which is known to have driven some developers away from kernel development entirely, was one of the issues that the maintainers wanted to discuss. Accordingly, the decision was made to move to Edinburgh to fit in with his vacation. That such a disruptive change of venue should occur indicates there’s considerable strength of feeling about Torvalds’ presence.

Simultaneously with this, the Linux project now has a code of conduct. Previously, the project had a “code of conflict”: a short document that asserts that the code quality is the only thing that matters and implores developers to “be excellent to each other.” The new code of conduct is more extensive and sets explicit standards for behavior, requiring it to be positive, professional, welcoming, and inclusive.

So much for Linux, then. If I didn’t already have my hands full, I’d fork the damn thing myself.