After being very active in the linux community for +10 yrs, I think the reason it's doing so well is _exactly_ because Linus choose the GPL instead of making it BSD. I think the BSD license allowed, almost encouraged, the fragmentation that ended up killing the big UNIXs.*
I also think that's why linux is doing so much better than [Free/Open/Net]BSD. I prefer contributing to GPL projects because I can give back without having to worry about my work be used against me when/if profit comes into the picture. I'm just one person, but I know I'm not alone. Perhaps there are more people of this mentality than of the "BSD='real' freedom" mentality.
"I don't think of 5% as that big a success story."
That's on the desktop. Linux pretty much owns the HPC market, has a LARGE chunk of the embedded market, a LARGE chunk of the server market, more than a few stock markets use linux as a trading platform, ...
'No, Linux "succeeded" because ...'
Geez, you can also hear the animosity
"In fact, one of the reasons we are going into the embedded world is that there is no dominant player there."
Uh yea there is. They're named WindRiver with VxWorks. Linux is either 2nd or 3rd depending on the surveys I've seen, with Microsoft's offerings being the other.
"What most ordinary users want is that it ALWAYS works."
Uh, I'm not sure about that. From what I've seen, most ordinary users want something that's 'good enough'
I wish him luck, more new people (his students) working on OSS projects is always good.
*Yes, I know HPUX, AIX, etc are still used and developed, but linux is much more widely used.