Linus Torvalds reviews, loves, the Google Nexus 7

Linus Torvalds reviews, loves, the Google Nexus 7

Summary: Linus Torvalds, creator of Linux, reviews the Nexus 7 tablet on Google+ and loves it.

TOPICS: Linux, Android, Tablets
Linus Torvalds loves his Google Nexus 7 tablet.

Linus Torvalds, Linux's inventor, software developer extraordinary, and, now, tablet reviewer! On Google+, Torvalds reviewed his Nexus 7 tablet and like ZDNet reviewers such as James Kendrick, he loved it.

Of course, it's not perfect. Torvalds wrote, “Yes, the camera is front-facing only, and there's a good reason there's not even a camera app on the thing by default: it's pretty nasty. But does anybody really care? You'd look like a complete dork trying to take photos with a tablet anyway. It's probably fine enough for some video conferencing, but since that's not my thing let's just say 'whatever.'”

As for the operating system, Android 4.1, Jelly Bean, he, unlike ZDNet's Jason Perlow, likes the Nexus 7's default “plain android look.” Torvalds also found it “smoother, and that Jelly Bean is “picking up some of the best extensions (like app folder shortcuts). Yes, resizable widgets etc. And a lot of small improvement just in general.”

As or the applications, Torvalds and I agree on one point, on Gmail “the %^$* thing still cannot be set to send just plain-text emails. Why, google, why? Good technical mailing lists all know that html email is just spam or marketing people, and auto-delete html crap. Just give me the option to send text-only, ok?” Amen brother.

We also agree about the Nexus 7's side. “I think the 10" tablets are too big. The 8.9" form factor is better. And I think the 7" one is better yet, although I wouldn't dismiss something in between those two (ie the rumored apple mini-tablet size of 7.85" doesn't sound bad either).”

When it came to use as an e-reader though Torvalds still prefers a Kindle. That's because “E-Ink really is nicer for reading. And the kindle is lighter, which to me is a big deal while reading. I've got the Kindle Touch, but I think I'll switch to the even lighter Kindle 4 ("Kindle 5"?) if it gets a front-light.” Personally, when it comes to e-readers, I'm a Barnes & Noble Nook fan. That said, Toravlds thinks “the Nexus 7 is a perfectly fine reader, and with color, magazines etc work.

Torvalds sums up: “It's solid. If you simply don't like tablets (or android), I doubt the Nexus 7 will really change your mind, but if you were borderline, the new price-point (for a quality device - there's been cheap tablets before, but they've really been pretty bad) and the incremental improvements might be enough to push people over the line.”

I've just started playing with mine, but based on what I've seen I'd agree. The Nexus 7 is a lot of tablet for the money. That is, if you can find a Nexus 7 you can buy. They're selling at an incredible clip.

Related Stories:

Nexus 7 hands-on: Form and function meet flash and panache

App comparison: iPad vs. Nexus 7 -- no clear winner

How to make your Nexus 7 not suck

Google's Nexus 7: Android tablets have the same old problems

Nexus 7 and the start of my Google life

Topics: Linux, Android, Tablets

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  • Linus Torvalds loves it

    must be good.
  • SJVN is back again with Crap #2

    Another SJVN fan-boy propaganda...
    • So point out the errors in this piece

      I dislike a lot of the stuff that he puts out, but this isn't one of the bad articles.
      Michael Alan Goff
      • Concur

        This is a good article for a change instead of the pro-Linux drivel SVN just endlessly writes about.
    • When you do something

      as impressive as the Linux kernel, maybe we'll value your opinion over a winner like Linus. Right now, you're just another crapple fanboy spouting off.
    • Owlinet is back again with Crap # 2

      and I stand behind this message :-)
      Over and Out
    • Re; Another SJVN fan-boy propaganda...

      You are really good at spewing nonsense !
  • If a Comment is made on Google+ is it similar to a.....

    .....Tree falling in the forest?
    • And your comment is like...

      A piece of crap falling in the sewer?
      coco montoya
  • Linus Torvalds reviews, loves, the Google Nexus 7

    Of course he does, its running the product he copycatted from others. It'd be a surprise if he didn't like a product with his OS on it. Wait until he finds out someone doesn't like it then he can go into another one of his childish rants and drop a few f bombs.
    Loverock Davidson-
    • Indeed!

      Hear, hear!!! And by the way: "Linus Torvalds, Linux's inventor" is a more than incorrect statement, worse, it's B.S. We all know that a complete O.S. is MUCH more than a kernel alone. The person who started developing the (GNU) user-land is Richard Stalman and many, many others have joined the project and devoted countless hours doing most of the development of what we now (should) call GNU/Linux. The GNU kernel, HURD, wasn't ready but the OS would have worked just as good, if not better, with the FreeBSD kernel.
      • Correct

        Wow there's intelligent life in ZDnet comments. Have to come here more often.
        • Re; Correct


          NOT correct.
      • Discounting the ...

        NSA code, maybe. The kernel it is not the full OS but the kernel part (nucleus)
        • Wrong

          Monolithic kernel is whole operating system but if it is microkernel, it is just most important part of the operating system.

          Operating System as a term is for software what is responsible to control hardware and allow multiple programs to run same time and that software operates them.
          The software responsible for that, was before term "operating system" known as "nucleus", "master program", "core", "kernel", "controller" and so on.
          But it was time when there was only one architecture and most used term for that software type was "kernel". Then decades later was new architecture developed and it was server-client. Idea was that kernel will be sliced to multiple parts, most essential code to small microkernel and rest of it to multiple servers. Microkernel only controlled servers. Servers all had only one task per server. Like one server for specific filesystem type. Another server for specific network protocol like TCP/IP and another server for printer driver. Every driver is own server. If one server crash, it does not affect to other servers or microkernel because they are separated processes and all servers were usually located to different address space.

          Linux is monolithic operating system.
          HURD is server-client operating system
          NT is server-client operating system
          XNU is server-client operating system
          SunOS is monolithic operating system
          FreeBSD is monolihic operating system
          OpenBSD is monolithic operating system
          Minix is server-client operating system

          And so on. Two different architectures, two different ways how operating systems work, but huge difference is, kernel (monolithic) is operating system, while microkernel is most important part of operating system, rest being the servers.
      • Wrong when you say OS it

        is kernel end of the story! others are just apps which connect to kernel (OS) we have distros which GNU made a lot of efforts for them or android which google made it or IOS in cisco products etc
      • Indeed - not!

        "And by the way: "Linus Torvalds, Linux's inventor" is a more than incorrect statement, worse, it's B.S. We all know that a complete O.S. is MUCH more than a kernel alone."

        It's you who is talking B.S. Linux is the kernel, not the whole operating system. Your confusion is probably caused by the fact that for the sake of briefness and convenience the name "Linux" is often used of the combination of Linux kernel and other software which complements Linux so that a full operating system is formed.

        So Linux Torvalds can in all fairness be called Linux's inventor. He's work was based on the work of many others, but that's the case with almost all inventions. You don't invent big things all by yourself nowadays.
        • You are wrong.

          You don't know that there are monolithic operating systems (aka kernels) and operating systems whats architecture is server-client (aka microkernel).

          Linux is just the name of the operating system, aka "Linux kernel".
          But some idiots call Linux + everything what Linux runs as "Linux" and it is wrong.
          Linux is just operating system what anyone can download from But normal users don't do a sh*t with operating system. They need programs and programs needs libraries. And the whole stack builds fast to very complex system what is needed so normal user gets fancy graphical user interface what can be used by "clicking a visual object on screen or type letter on keyboard and see it on screen". But everything what they see, isn't from operating system but from other software.

          Unless you can proof that Linux is microkernel and not monolithic.... what would mean you need to rewrite books, Linux and whole operating system history.
      • Re; . . a complete O.S. is MUCH more than a kernel alone. . .

        And Linux IS the kernel !

        Linux, which IS a kernel, was invented by Linus Torvalds.

        This is actually a quite well known fact.
      • ROFLMAOL, HUH?!

        And you are just ignorant grunt spreading propaganda.

        It must be news to you that Linux kernel is the operating system. As Linux isn't microkernel but a monolithic by its architecture.
        And you don't even have a clue what huge difference is between server-client and monolithic architectures.

        If Linux would be a microkernel, then it wouldn't be operating system.
        And HURD isn't a kernel, but whole operating system and by architecture it is Server-Client, whats microkernel is GNU Mach.

        FreeBSD is monolithic operating system as well like Linux.

        Without operating system, none of the GNU libraries or programs would work. And bootloader isn't part of operating system, it is just a program whats only purpose is to load operating system from storage device and execute it. Then operating system takes control and starts operating the hardware and executes first non-OS process (in case of monolithics operating systems, it is first process what is on userland side and usually it is INIT process what is mother process of all other processes).