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Scott Ventura >> Movie Commentary >> March 2003 >> Revolution OS

Revolution OS

Movie Commentary by Scott Ventura


Scott's Rating:
3 / 5
Times Seen:
Viewing Date:
March 2003
IMDB Name:
Revolution OS (2001)
J.T.S. Moore
MPAA Rating:


This movie's page is incomplete. I hate to admit that I'd put a page on my site only to leave it as "under construction", but it's the easiest way for me to be reminded of the reviews left to write. In this case, I know pretty much what I want to say about this movie, but I have yet to actually type it all in. This message will no longer appear when the I consider the page to be complete. That doesn't mean it won't ever change after that, but you can bet that it's less likely.

Niche Market

Revolution OS is a documentary that provides a brief history of the Linux operating system and some of the key pioneers of open source software and free software. As someone who uses open source operating systems and tools at both home and work, this is of great interest to me. Heck, this web site is hosted on a FreeBSD machine, and the pages are generated using gcc and perl. I'm even writing this review with the almighty emacs. I'm a regular Slashdot reader, I've memorized most of the Jargon File, and I'm installed Linux a few times. Hearing Linus Torvalds pronounce his own name is very informative, indeed. This opportunity to hear directly from the mouths of ESR and RMS is rather nice. There were one or two tidbits that I really liked, including Michael Tiemann's remark about a "five-day emacs course" and the reading of Bill Gates's Open Letter to Hobbyists. Stallman's speech when the Free Software Foundation received a Linux award was also decent. Other than that, Revolution OS is scarcely boring, but it's not that exciting, either, even to somebody who uses lots of open source tools.

The question, then, is if this is sufficiently gripping material for a general audience. There just isn't much drama in the stories here. I've definitely felt the benefits of using tools developed under the General Public License and the


Copyright 2003 by Scott Ventura. All rights reserved.