How Linux Became My Job


IBM engineer Phil Estes shares how his Linux hobby led him to become an open source leader, contributor, and maintainer.

I’ve been using open source since what seems like prehistoric times. Back then, there was nothing called social media. There was no Firefox, no Google Chrome (not even a Google), no Amazon, barely an internet. In fact, the hot topic of the day was the new Linux 2.0 kernel. The big technical challenges in those days? Well, the ELF format was replacing the old a.out format in binary Linux distributions, and the upgrade could be tricky on some installs of Linux.

How I transformed a personal interest in this fledgling young operating system to a career in open source is an interesting story. …This journey—from my first use of Linux to becoming a leader, contributor, and maintainer in today’s cloud-native open source world—has been extremely rewarding.