One of the reasons Newcomers to Linux are scared off is the sheer number of choice-Ubuntu, Fedora, SUSE, Arch, Debian, Mandriva, PCLinuxOS…And all the variants and amateur releases and specialties and on and on… More here
Linux distributions are built around certain core projects- They have a charter to provide a certain experience.The Debian Project compiles all these to create an operating system based on the Linux Kernel. Debian is Unix-y. Like most Major projects its available on a wide variety of systems- 13 different processors actually. There’s a huge amount of packages-25,000 and more everyday.