Today we heard the sad news that Ian Murdock has passed away. He was 42.
Although Ian and my paths crossed relatively infrequently, over the years we became friends. His tremendous work in Debian was an inspiration for my own work in Ubuntu. At times when I was unsure of what to do in my work, Ian would share his guidance and wisdom. He never asked for anything in return. He never judged. He always supported the growth of Open Source and Free Software. He was precisely the kind of person that makes the Open Source and Free Software world so beautiful.
As such, when I heard about some of his erratic tweets a few days back as I landed back home from the UK for Christmas, I reached out with a friendly arm to see if there was anything I could do to help. Sadly, I got no response. I now know why: he had likely just passed away when I reached out to him.
While it is natural for us to grieve his passing, we should also take time to focus on what he gave us all. He gave us a sparkling personality, a passion for everyone to succeed, and a legacy of Open Source and Free Software that would be hard to match.
Ian, wherever you may be, rest in peace. We will miss you