Go here to read more about Linus Torvalds and the history of Linux. Has nice anecdotes. Here's a snippet:
Not only did Linus not know everything about C, he also didn't know anything about PC's. In fact, he didn't even have one when I first met him. When he bought his first PC, he didn't even start hacking it right away. Instead, he played computer games, especially one called something like Prince of Persia. I've never understood that part of him. I mean, what's a computer game worth if it doesn't simulate playing cards? No, give me solitaire, if you want me to play with a computer.
Linux is the most wonderful thing that the Internet has helped grow.