THE CODE: STORY OF LINUX PART 2 OF 3
The hero of the film is the archetype of our times: the programmer. In The Code programming is seen partially as an art form. Like artists, programmers will do it even if they do not get any money. Through Torvalds and his cohort, following the code development process, we get into the mind-set of a programmer – and the communication between programmers. Operating from his study in San Jose, California, Linus is the benevolent dictator among hundreds of Linux developers around the world.
This room is the centre of their universe. Everything goes through Linus, or his right hand man Alan Cox, a Welshman. Developers compete in order to get their solutions and improvements accepted by Linus. He openly admits that he developed only 2 % or 3 % of the code in the beginning, and that he built upon the work by earlier programmers, like Richard Stallman. Developers are like monks in their virtual monastery.
Their change of e-mails through the years opens the Linux saga in the film like a letter novel. Leadership in Linux universe is about getting people to trust enough that they take advice, making them to do things because of their own reasons, not due to any external pressure.
Along the way, Microsoft recognizes competition, and throws some mccarthyian dirt towards Linux, calling it un-American. Regardless of this, Wall Street applauds, and for a brief time Linux is the cream of the crop at the stock exchange market.
What is more important and revolutionary, the Linux phenomenon makes a lot of ground in Asia and Africa, where an open source code and a free operating system are something concrete, not just fancy, elitist idealism. The process started in Europe and the United States, but it is bound to be completed somewhere else.