Q&A with the Founder of LinuxQuestions.org

Jeremy Garcia launched LinuxQuestions.org more than a decade ago, and now he has plans for a network of sites housing millions of questions answered by thousands of open source enthusiasts.

Jeremy Garcia started using Linux in the mid-'90s, first running Yggdrasil, then moving to Slackware. In 2000, not long after getting his first full-time Linux job, Garcia founded LinuxQuestions.org. More than a decade later, Garcia is still active in the Linux and open source community, and LinuxQuestions.org continues to grow. In this interview, Garcia looks back at how much the LinuxQuestions.org community has grown, and shares his plans for future site launches.

RE: What's going on at LinuxQuestions.org these days?

JG: LQ continues to grow at a rate that both astounds and humbles me. It's quite simply grown well beyond anything I ever imagined it would — and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention that the site would be nothing without the members or our extremely dedicated mod team. At any given time, there are usually between 3,000 to 4,000 people browsing the site. We're closing in on 5-million posts and, despite the fact that we very actively prune inactive members and spam accounts, we have almost half a million registered members. For those interested in browser and OS stats, I recently made a blog post on that topic. The site is visited by everyone from complete neophytes to distribution maintainers and industry leaders.

On a related note, the LQ Wiki continues to grow and LQ ISO has now facilitated almost 16-million downloads.

RE: What made you decide to start a job board?

JG: We've actually had a job board for many years. Hearing from members who are now supporting their families because of a job they got through LQ is extremely rewarding. A third party recently approached us with a solution that we felt was better than what we currently had in place, so we decided to test that solution out on a BETA basis. Based on member feedback, we recently migrated from our in-house LQ Job marketplace to the new one, located at http://jobs.linuxquestions.org/.

RE: What made you decide to start AndroidQuestions.org?

JG: It's clear that the future of mobile in general, and Android in particular, is very bright. We noticed a huge up-tick in mobile-related questions and decided that the Android ecosystem was a compliment to the Linux ecosystem in many ways. With this in mind, the decision was made to launch a sister site to LQ, which turned into AndroidQuestions.org.

With the realization that we had an extremely large existing community in place that may be interested in this — and other — topics, the initial plan to launch AQ turned into something bigger, however, launching The Questions Network. The Questions Network will allow us to utilize our existing technology platform to launch new sites. Your existing login for any site in the network will then work for any other site in the network. We're seeing a wide variety of question types at AQ and are looking forward to the challenge of growing the site.

RE: What's next for you? Any new sites planned or other projects?

JG: We have a large code update planned for LQ this year, which will bring it in line with the BETA platform that is currently running AndroidQuestions.org. Once that upgrade is done, we'll likely focus on adding another site or two to The Questions Network.

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