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The name of Fedora derives from Fedora Linux, a volunteer project that provided extra software for the Red Hat Linux distribution, and from the characteristic fedora hat used in Red Hat's "Shadowman" logo.
Warren Togami began Fedora Linux in 2002 as an undergraduate project at the University of Hawaii, intended to provide a single repository for well-tested third-party software packages so that non-Red Hat software would be easier to find, develop, and use.
Thanks to Pim Rupert for the location of the Dries key.
The key of Fedora Linux and Red Hat Linux was that Fedora's repository development would be collaborative with the global volunteer community.
Before Fedora 7, Fedora was called Fedora Core after the name of one of the two main software repositories - Core and Extras.
Thanks to Anduin Withers for a good idea about how to reorganize this question.
Thanks to Dieter Komendera for the new location of the Fresh RPMs key.) This FAQ is maintained by Max Kanat-Alexander.