Linus Torvalds, the creator of the Linux kernel, has apologised for years of bad behaviour – including his attacks on other developers.
Torvalds issued the apology as part of his announcement of the latest release candidate of the kernel – Linux 4.19-rc4.
“My flippant attacks in emails have been both unprofessional and uncalled for. Especially at times when I made it personal. In my quest for a better patch, this made sense to me. I know now this was not OK and I am truly sorry,” said Torvalds.
He said he is not an emotionally empathetic person, but this shouldn’t come as a big surprise to anyone.
“The fact that I then misread people and don’t realise – for years – how badly I’ve judged a situation and contributed to an unprofessional environment is not good.”
Torvalds said he is going to take time off and get some help on how to understand people’s emotions and respond appropriately.
“This is not some kind of I’m burnt out, I need to just go away. I’m not feeling like I don’t want to continue maintaining Linux. Quite the reverse.”
“I very much do want to continue to do this project that I’ve been working on for almost three decades,” he said.
He stated that this is more like the time he decided to take a break from Linux to write git – a source control system that forms the basis of GitHub, which is being acquired by Microsoft.