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I am going to introduce Ubuntu to some new users (students in this case). Usually, I talk about the history of Ubuntu, how Ubuntu started, who has built Ubuntu in the past, and who decides the road Ubuntu takes.

Of course, you can't talk about the history of Ubuntu without mentioning Mark Shuttleworth. I would quite like to have a question on Ask Ubuntu to point new users to, so this is it!

Who is Mark Shuttleworth, and how is he related to Ubuntu?

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Wikipedia: Mark Shuttleworth (Ctrl+F "Ubuntu") and Wikipedia: Ubuntu (Ctrl+F "Shuttleworth") –  gertvdijk Feb 7 '13 at 0:19
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up vote 25 down vote accepted

Mark Shuttleworth is an entrepreneur from South Africa who founded the Ubuntu operating system through his company, Canonical.

  • Before founding Canonical, he was the founder of Thawte, a company he founded in 1995 to provide digital certificates and internet security. Thawte has since been sold to Verisign.

  • Shuttleworth was a Debian Developer in the 1990s.

  • Shuttleworth founded his company Canonical LTD in 2004, a company dedicated to supporting free software.

  • Through his company Canonical LTD, he founded the Ubuntu operating system in 2004. Ubuntu is a derivative software product of Debian. Canonical still governs and supports the Ubuntu operating system to this day and Ubuntu continues to be a product based on Debian.

  • He set up the Ubuntu Foundation in 2005 with an initial donation of $10 million USD of his own funds.

  • He remained the CEO of Canonical LTD until 2010, when he stepped down to focus on other responsibilities within Canonical and Ubuntu.

  • Shuttleworth is also famous for being the second ever self-funded space tourist (funded a trip to space with his own money) and the first ever South African in space.

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Whao, interesting, I never knew Ubuntu was Canonical's child from the beginning. I always assumed Canonical stepped in right around 10.04 and that's when UI changes began. –  etsr Feb 7 '13 at 1:30
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No but interestingly, 10.04 marked the first release where Shuttleworth wasn't CEO anymore and instead was focusing more on, among other things, product design. –  neon_overload Feb 7 '13 at 1:43
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@Flabricorn: the thought that some people think this never even occurred to me! Have an upvote. –  Flimm Feb 12 '13 at 21:45
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