USA - 2015
For the development and leadership of GCC (the GNU Compiler Collection), which has enabled extensive software and hardware innovation, and has been a lynchpin of the free software movement.
GCC is a cornerstone of the free (libre) software community. It enabled important software like the GNU/Linux operating system and the Mozilla browser, and has supported hundreds of other software systems that collectively form the foundation of the modern Internet. The GNU system and applications, usually with Linux as the kernel, provide a complete operating system, that is completely free software; this would not have been possible without a robust free compiler at its core.
GCC has also spurred a wide range of software and hardware innovation. Its remarkable retargetability has made it possible to develop software for novel hardware at very low cost, enabling a large number of specialty hardware enterprises. Its community-based development model and extensive community led to an enormous amount of compiler research, the best of which has been absorbed back into GCC itself. The design of GCC proved robust and extensible enough to survive, and even thrive, through three decades of innovation in compiler technology and processor design.
More broadly, GCC and its associated development tools have driven the creation of a complete ecosystem of free software, attracting tens of thousands of developers, many of whom have become important software leaders in their own right.