Linus Torvalds spoke about Apple's Mac OS X operating system at the linux.conf.au conference in Melbourne last week. Torvalds says he isn't impressed by Mac OS X and claims it's in some ways worse than Windows Vista:
"I don't think they're equally flawed - I think Leopard is a much better system," he said. "(But) OS X in some ways is actually worse than Windows to program for. Their file system is complete and utter crap, which is scary."
He poured scorn on the modern trend to treat a new version or update of an operating system as a cause for major celebration and marketing.
"An operating system should be completely invisible," he said. "To Microsoft and Apple (it is) a way to control the whole environment ... to force people to upgrade their applications and hardware."
As for his own operating system, Linus said the most exciting developments were Linux's improving green credentials, and a push into mobile devices such as the One Laptop per Child project and Asus's new ultra-cheap Eee PC.
The latter, he said, could be a sign that Asian hardware manufacturers were starting to bypass Western commercial operating systems in order to get more control over their products.
"That's the primary area that open source (software like Linux) is useful. Software is really expensive to produce and takes years. If you're a hardware company you can't really afford that, you either have to be controlled from the outside or take a pre-existing software stack that you can make changes to."
Linux would be an obvious choice for anything from full-blown PCs to phones or video players, Torvalds said.