“i think you, along with many others, don’t correctly understand what a linux distribution *is*. linux is the kernel. that ~1MB chunk of binary built from the ~30MB (for 2.4 kernels, at least) of compressed source that handles all the low-level important shit like memory management and interrupts and process scheduling and io interfaces and other fun kernel-level stuff i want to hack on but don’t.
“everything else is user-level applications. wine, ls, cat, X, kde, gnome, evolution, kmail, login, getty, init, ssh, apache, etc, et. al, and so forth and so on.
“a distribution is just a pairing of the two. each distribution uses their own packaging methods (rpm, dpkg, ebuild, tar.gz) and their own installation methods (which are usually interactive applications, making it easy for anyone with half a brain and an install guide to handle).”