One thing that may be daunting to users of platforms that, shall we say, holds the hands of new programmers and comforts them even when unwarranted, is the idea of beginning a new project for GNU/Linux. Knowing where to start is not trivial, largely because the ecosystem is so mind-numbingly varied and huge.
With Ubuntu 9.10, there is a new way to start projects, a program called “Quickly”. I will not be for everyone, but it aims to make a large fraction of projects easy to begin. As the wiki page of Quickly describes,
Given the richness and variety of the Linux platform, programming on Linux should be easy and fun. However, it’s not easy and fun because it is too hard to learn. It is too hard to learn because there are too many choices, and too much information to wade through. Quickly strives to make programming easy and fun by bringing opinionated choices about how to write different kinds of programs to developers. Included is a Ubuntu application template for making applications that integrate smoothly into the Ubuntu software infrastructure.
Anyone considering a new project on Ubuntu should first know about Quickly. One can learn a lot from Didier Roche’s 9-part tutorial about Quickly.