Ben Collins (programmer)

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Ben Collins is an American programmer, Linux developer and system administrator.


In his early career Collins worked as desktop publisher, web designer, as engineer at the NASA Langley Research Center and for several internet service providers (ISPs).[1] Collins worked at Winstar Communications during 2000–2001.[2]

From April 2001 to April 2002[3][4][5] Collins acted as the Debian Project Leader. During his tenure he specialised on the UltraSPARC port and advocated for proactive security and testing policies.[1][6] Debian is a computer operating system composed of software packages released as free and open source software primarily under the GNU General Public License.[7] Collins had stood for Debian Project Leader two times prior to being elected. When he took up the role he commented that when he joined the project Ian Jackson, who was at the end of his term as Debian Project Leader, was "very inactive". Jackson was followed by Wichert Akkerman for two terms, and according to Collins "did an excellent job keeping Debian going". Once elected Collins declared his intent to get Debian moving and during his tenor he sought to provide strategic leadership to build the Debian movement.[1][6] Collins was succeeded as Debian Project Leader by Bdale Garbee.[citation needed]

Following his tenure as Debian Project Leader Collins worked for Canonical Ltd[8] as the Linux kernel team leader for Ubuntu.[2][9][10][11] Collins maintained the IEEE 1394 "Firewire" subsystem in the Linux kernel.[12] In September 2004 Collins founded SwissDisk along with his brother Ken Collins.[13]


  1. ^ a b c "Interview with Ben Collins, the new Debian Project Leader". Linux Gazette (66). May 2001. Retrieved 2012-02-01. 
  2. ^ a b Bretton, A.J. (2001-04-09). "Third Time's a Charm.". Client Server News (G2 Computer Intelligence). Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  3. ^ Zacchiroli, Stefano (2011-03-21). "Since then — 12 Debian Project Leaders (DPL)" (slides). Software Liberty Association of Taiwan (SLAT)Debian: 17 years of Free Software, "do-ocracy", and democracy. Taipei. p. 7. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  4. ^ Bretton, A.J. (2001-04-02). "Debian Gets New Chef". Client Server News (G2 Computer Intelligence). Archived from the original on 2009. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  5. ^ Debian Documentation Team (2005-08-10). "Leadership" (slides). A Brief History of Debian. 2.5. 
  6. ^ a b "Ben Collins". Corporate Information. SwissDisk. 2011. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  7. ^ "What Does Free Mean? or What do you mean by Free Software?". official Debian site. The Debian Project. Retrieved 2009-12-01. 
  8. ^ Larabel, Michael (2008-08-21). "Ubuntu 8.10 To Use Linux 2.6.27 Kernel?". Phoronix. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  9. ^ Maduro, Roger A. (2011-09-09). "Open Health News" (slides). San Diego. p. 2. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  10. ^ Shuttleworth, Mark (2006-01-14). "Virtual wundermachines". Here be dragons. Retrieved 2012-02-11. "Ben Collins, the Ubuntu kernel maintainer," 
  11. ^ Speaker. "Ben Collins". Conferences. O'Reilly Media. 2007. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  12. ^ "Beyond markets and firms: The emergence of Open Source networks". First Monday (journal) 10 (5). 2005-04-03. "They maintain their own subsystem, … Ben Collins (firewire)," 
  13. ^ Mellor, Chris (2009-10-19). "Swissdisk suffers spectacular cloud snafu". The Register. Retrieved 2012-02-11. "started in September 2004 by brothers Ben and Ken Collins and was bought out by Next-Star in December that year." 

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Preceded by
Wichert Akkerman
Debian Project Leader
April 2001 – April 2002
Succeeded by
Bdale Garbee