Linux Kernel Fuck Count

in 1998, glenn forwarded me a message from the linux kernel hackers list. this message suggests that the linux kernel source is laden with profanity, the word fuck in particular. my curiosity led me to untar, grep, and wc through a selection of linux kernels, in search of love, fuck, and some other trends in the evolution of linux.

it would appear to be pretty difficult to get a linux kernel hacker to swear (or express any form of love---lovable, lovably, love, loved, lovelier, lovelies, loveliest, loveliness, lovelorn, lovely, lover, lovers, loves, loving, lovingly, etc.) in the linux kernel source. from the chart below you have to wonder what was going on around kernel 2.1.50 :-).

after the cuss-word novelty wears off, some of the other information is pretty interesting -- such as the the gradual increase in source tree size, file, line and word counts with each new kernel over the past six-seven years. i wonder how this sort of growth compares to the evolution of a commercial operating system kernel.

when you put it all together and consider that in the present kernel source, 275 credited kernel authors wrote over 1,895,964 lines of code and documentation (6,856,723 words) and only managed to cuss 29 times -- it would seem that these developers show incredible self restraint when expressing frustration, are complete professionals, are sedated, or are just enjoying what they do!

update 2006-11-01: thanks for digging this document; a modern-day continuation of this novelty is maintained by vidar holen.

copyright  ©  February 06 2023 sean dreilinger url: