This is the largest distributed software development project in the world.
Since 2005, the number of active kernel developers has tripled, reflecting the rowing importance of Linux in the embedded systems, server, and desktop markets.
Between 70 and 95 percent of those developers are being paid for their work, dispelling the “hobbyist” myth present from the start of open source development.
“Never before in the history of computing have there been so many companies, users and developers united behind one project, specifically one that has seen so much commercial success,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation
More than 70 percent of total contributions to the kernel come from developers working at a range of companies including IBM, Intel, The Linux Foundation, MIPS Technology, MontaVista, Movial, NetApp, Novell and Red Hat. These companies, and many others, find that by improving the kernel they have a competitive edge in their markets.
The top 4 Corporate Contributers are:
1) Red Hat, 11.2 percent
2) Novell, 8.9 percent
3) IBM, 8.3 percent
4) Intel, 4.1 percent
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