I look up to people like Alan Cox. It’s really reassuring to me when he answers a question like this. No matter how great one becomes at something, there is always someone better. It’s not about being the best, it’s about doing the most with what you have. Link is from linuxformat.co.uk.
LXF: You say you’ve got a fairly free rein to work on what you want. Do you find it difficult to keep yourself disciplined to finish certain projects?
AC: What often tends to happen in the free software world is that you get a project to a certain state, and it works, it’s usable, it’s in the mainstream kernel, and then somebody else will come along and start contributing to it who is simply better at that subject than you are. And the best thing you can do is go and find some other project.
That happened with things like the networking code, it happened with the multiprocessing… it was great. It wasn’t my problem any more. And they worked a lot better than if I had been left in charge of them. A lot of what I tend to do is cleaning up, fixing and making work really old, horrible grungy code. It was one of the jobs I did in the proprietary software world, which meant I was greatly in demand, and it’s one thing I do in the free software world, and I think it’s a very important part of my daily job.