The top two Linux organizations announced today they are merging to form a new organization called The Linux Foundation. The work of the Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) and the Free Standards Group (FSG) will be continued by their successor. This includes:
- Sponsoring key Linux developers
- Providing legal services
- Standardizing APIs for Linux developers
- Providing a forum for collaboration and promotion
Some early reports indicated the Free Software Foundation (FSF) was part of the merger but that is incorrect. The FSF, which puts more emphasis on user freedoms and abhors proprietary software, will likely keep its distance from the new organization. The Linux Foundation's members tend to take a more pragmatic approach that balances developer freedoms, business interests, and user freedoms.
The Linux Foundation will have 45 full time employees (including Linux creator Linus Torvalds) and 70 corporate members including HP, IBM, Novel, Oracle, and Red Hat.