Of course you know that software is not born on a certain day, it is a long-long process, even if we speak about only the development part (which is – as a rule of thumb – only a good 40 % of the whole work – if you regard e.g. “testing” as a work…). However, the idea can be born, or at least be published at a certain point of time.
In the previous millennia there was an old minix newsgroup where a certain guy called Linus Benedict Torvalds asked a question to the public, here is an archive:
“Nothing big or professional…”, “NOT portable”, “probably never will support anything other than AT-harddisks” – just some of the statements which were not remained true. The reason is not Linus Torvalds being a non-visioner. Simply Linux was the right thing in the right time – it worked in a certain extent, it was free in the sense that anyone could use it even for commercial purposes and free in the sense that anyone could contribute to the development – the rivals lacked one or two of these three features.
A couple of years later even I could install the v. 0.96 of the kernel to my 386SX machine with 512 kB of RAM – it was an everlasting fun to adjust the display parameters as length of the row synchron and frame synchron signals to have the biggest stable image on my Hercules graphics card and my 12″ monochrome monitor…
Nowadays Linux runs on a number of processor types – even on mainframes -, have a wide installation base among enterprise servers and some brave pals and gals even use it for the desktop (including me, of course).
Is it better than other operating systems? This is not really important. But with the enormous ability to react to the change it will be in the survivors’ part of the OS evolution for the decades to come, too.
Your M. Gy.