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Linus Torvalds Receives 2012 Millennium Technology Prize

By - Source: Technology Academy Finland | B 33 comments

Linus Torvalds has been chosen as one of the two recipients of the prestigious 2012 Millennium Technology Prize.

The award is presented every other year by the by the Technology Academy Finland, which is maintained by the Finnish industry and the government in Finland.

Introduced in 2004, the Millennium Technology Prize is the largest technology award in existence and some say it is the equivalent of the Nobel Prize for certain technological achievements. The total award is about $1.3 million, which is divided between the laureates.

Torvalds is honored for creating the Linux operating systems and making it available free of charge. In a statement the Technology Academy Finland said that development of Linux to date is equal to the investment of 73,000 man-years and has touched the lives of "millions, if not billions" of people.

Next to Torvalds, Shinya Yamanaka will be awarded with the Prize for his achievement to develop an induced pluripotent stem cells for medical research that do not rely on the use of embryonic stem cells.

The award ceremony will take place in Helsinki, Finland, on June 13.

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Top Comments
  • 26 Hide
    amuffin , April 22, 2012 2:14 AM
    Good thing he didn't join apple!
  • 23 Hide
    ismaeljrp , April 22, 2012 3:41 AM
    frozonichmmm.... more like few dozens


    obviously you know nothing.
  • 20 Hide
    -Jackson , April 22, 2012 2:27 AM
    amuffinGood thing he didn't join apple!

    +1
    Haha, agreed.
Other Comments
    Display all 33 comments.
  • 26 Hide
    amuffin , April 22, 2012 2:14 AM
    Good thing he didn't join apple!
  • 20 Hide
    -Jackson , April 22, 2012 2:27 AM
    amuffinGood thing he didn't join apple!

    +1
    Haha, agreed.
  • 2 Hide
    rolled , April 22, 2012 3:07 AM
    Not going to lie...while i think Linus Torvalds deserves to be honored for his accomplishments, for him to win the same prize as the developer of iPS cells is near laughable...
  • 23 Hide
    ismaeljrp , April 22, 2012 3:41 AM
    frozonichmmm.... more like few dozens


    obviously you know nothing.
  • 17 Hide
    Marco925 , April 22, 2012 4:11 AM
    frozonichmmm.... more like few dozens

    You know that Linux is the base of ALL android smartphones out there? -1 For you!
  • 15 Hide
    starcraftmazter , April 22, 2012 4:49 AM
    frozonichmmm.... more like few dozens


    In all likelihood, those iPS cells were developed on linux machines. You can not even comprehend the levels of technological and social progress GNU/Linux has brought about.
  • 0 Hide
    bison88 , April 22, 2012 5:07 AM
    Even though I'm not a Linux (sold my soul to GUI point-n-click everything years ago), there are certain people that you have to always give respect to whether you love 'em or hate 'em. Linus Torvalds is definitely up there with Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and many others and saying otherwise just shows ignorance.
  • 1 Hide
    derekullo , April 22, 2012 5:18 AM
    Trolling troll is trolling?
  • 9 Hide
    alidan , April 22, 2012 5:21 AM
    bison88Even though I'm not a Linux (sold my soul to GUI point-n-click everything years ago), there are certain people that you have to always give respect to whether you love 'em or hate 'em. Linus Torvalds is definitely up there with Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and many others and saying otherwise just shows ignorance.


    gates gets it for his work in os and charity work,
    jobs doesn't get it, because he started the thin war, and all he did tech wise was find a way to sell cool... if he couldn't sell cool, apple would be getting funds from microsoft to continue to function... while windows get so much near universal hate, yet we all still use it because its the best option (for most people)
  • 7 Hide
    wrucz , April 22, 2012 5:22 AM
    / linux rocks! though I dont know much about linux commands, I use linux of fact I am using linux right now, puppy linux for sure "lucid" installed in a XP Toshiba laptop without hard drive lol, just installed the puppy on the USB flash drive and works like a windows 7 machine!! it just works, and so many programs and most of all virus free and what I love about linux is that has huge inventory of programs and they all are free, yes old machines still good to go thanks to linux, thanks Linus for not been selfish and gave us linux for free!
  • 14 Hide
    wrucz , April 22, 2012 5:25 AM
    I guess Mr Linus your middle name is not GREED, that is why linnux rocks and is free
  • 12 Hide
    Bricktop , April 22, 2012 6:10 AM
    Linux probably touches nearly everyone with access to the internet. Between routers, phones, computers, servers, etc... Almost anyone connected to the internet has at some point interacted with a Linux system. No other OS that I know of works in the smallest of computers (24 KHz CPU) all the way up to the largest super computers. Apple and Microsoft don't even compete with Linux in that regard.

    Jobs and Gates where revolutionary decades ago, but in recent times they didn't innovate technology, they facilitated innovation. The key difference between them and Torvolds, besides several billion dollars and not being dead, is that Torvolds is still a key part of Linux development.
  • 5 Hide
    nekromobo , April 22, 2012 8:24 AM
    Hyvä Linus! +∞
  • 1 Hide
    molo9000 , April 22, 2012 9:14 AM
    rolledNot going to lie...while i think Linus Torvalds deserves to be honored for his accomplishments, for him to win the same prize as the developer of iPS cells is near laughable...


    Kind of true.
    While Linux is HUGELY influential, it is so because it was the first open source OS kernel, not because it is a real technological innovation.
  • 4 Hide
    _TuxUser_ , April 22, 2012 9:42 AM
    frozonichmmm.... more like few dozens


    This shows you have no clue about reality, most of the web servers you visit are run on GNU/Linux servers, most of todays TVs runs on Linux, most cars has digital boxes running Linux, a good many switches on the internet uses Linux. A funny thing is that in the Seattle area microsoft is one of the big Linux administrator employers and they even contributed with code to the Linux kernel (mainly to get another operating system to run on Hyper-V, I guess it would look bad if microsoft don't use their own products). All android phones uses Linux and if taking a step further 97.6% of all smart phones uses a Unix-like operating system. Many of the worlds big stock-markets runs on a Linux platform.

    Without Linux, the world wouldn't be as computerized, you would still be sitting there with your floppies and the only way for you to share your files would to pack it and the split the rar file up and store them on 40-80 floppies, for microsoft didn't believe in internet and hadn't been adding support for it if not Linux, AmigaOS, Atari TOS, *BSD, BeOS hadn't been around and forcing the development forward.

    The world has a lot to thank Linus for, no matter if you like or dislike him.
  • 6 Hide
    mitch074 , April 22, 2012 9:51 AM
    Linux isn't the first innovative polyvalent operating system (that went to UNIX) - it isn't even an OS, it's a kernel. It is not the first professional-grade operating system to be Free (that went to BSD UNIX). It isn't even innovative as a UNIX clone (it's still a monolithic design). Efficiency-wise, it isn't even completely there yet, if the continuing debate on the different schedulers is any indication.

    However, and this is probably what this award is about, Linus Torvalds managed to federate so many people from all over the world and from so many areas of expertise, and to actually have them making something that works, and works VERY well, that this fact alone is praiseworthy - Richard Stallman, the father of Free Software failed at that with GNU; Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and all the others wanted big money - see Vista, see the margins on iThingies, etc.

    Although Linus makes some cash off his work on Linux (he gets paid, very well - but he doesn't own his company), his main interest is software that does what he, or others, wants it to do. That's his credo - and, linked with his exceptional talent at herding cats and a practical sense of software design (he is famous for harshly criticising this or that software that don't agree with him - his views on GNOME's dumbing down are cult), makes Linux the most advanced and versatile UNIX-like kernel currently in existence.

    I only hope the next one to get it will be Brian Paul, for his work on the Mesa driver stack and OpenGL implementation, which is the next big thing today on Free systems: one driver stack to drive them all, one driver API to guide them and in lit pixels draw them in the world of accelerated graphics where mobiles go wild :p 
  • 8 Hide
    memadmax , April 22, 2012 10:01 AM
    Well deserved, congrats Linus!
  • 5 Hide
    goatsetung , April 22, 2012 10:49 AM
    molo9000Kind of true.While Linux is HUGELY influential, it is so because it was the first open source OS kernel, not because it is a real technological innovation.


    I see your point, but at the same time a similar argument could be made for almost any invention. "Anyway could have done that". Perhaps, but they didn't. Linus brought open source to the masses where plenty of people had failed.
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