Linux, Free Software and Career

May 5, 2014

Tux-shadedThe past few weeks I’ve met many young folks, enthusiastic about Linux & FOSS. Most of them, however, have got one particular question in their mind. That’s about a career in Linux. The question itself is ambiguous. I believe one doesn’t say a career in Linux but rather a career in open standards. Guess, that would be more suitable. Linux is part of the bigger Free/Open Source ecosystem. When talking of FOSS, we intend to pull in Linux, BSD, Apache, MySQL and a lot more. A career as a FOSS expert will open doors into a myriad of opportunities.

Let’s see, as a developer you could dip your hands into Python, Perl, Ruby, PHP which are themselves open languages & have been the founding technologies to develop tons of frameworks. Such popular frameworks are Django, Catalyst, Ruby on Rails, Joomla etc.

As a sysadmin, engineer or devops you might be interested in having a sound knowledge of various enterprise-class Linux distributions like Red Hat, SUSE, CentOS, Ubuntu and Debian. No wonder one of the next companies that’ll recruit you would be having a whole farm of servers running one or several of these distributions. It is therefore a must to have a decent knowledge of the Linux command line and be properly informed about various other applications like Web, Mail and File servers.

In fact, I recently read an article and the following quote made me smile:

“Do you know Linux? WE AE HIRING!” That’s what billboards from HostGator have been saying for the past several years. That company is not alone. Demand for Linux talent is high and getting higher.
Linux Foundation Free Software and CareerIn February 2014, the Linux Foundation published a report about the growing demand for Linux skills in the industry. The report can be downloaded here.

In the Mauritian context if we have a quick look at, it gives us a pretty nice picture about the status of Linux demand in the IT industry. Every month companies are searching for Linux talent & skills on several FOSS applications.