Canonical Voices

Posts tagged with 'ubuntu loco teams'

jono

My apologies in advance for the shorter blog post about this, but like many other Ubuntu folks, I am absolutely exhausted right now. Everyone, across the board, has been working their collective socks off to make Ubuntu 14.04 LTS a fantastic release on desktop, server, and cloud, and pull together our next iteration of Ubuntu for smart-phones and tablets. Consequently, when the trigger is pulled to share our final product with the world, release day is often less of a blistering and energetic woo-hoo, but more of an exhausted but satisfying oh-yeah (complete with beer firmly clenched in hand).

I am hugely proud of this release. The last six months have arguably been our busiest yet. No longer are we just working on desktop and server editions of Ubuntu, but we are building for the cloud and full convergence across the client. No longer are we “just” pulling together the fruits of upstream software projects but we are building our own platform too; the Ubuntu SDK, developer eco-system, charm store, image-based updates, push notifications, app lifecycle, and more. While the work has been intense and at times frantic, it has always been measured and carefully executed. Much of this has been thanks to many of our most under-thanked people; the members of our tremendous QA and CI teams.

Today, tomorrow, and for weeks to come our users, the press, the industry, and others will assess our work in Ubuntu 14.04 across these different platforms, and I am very confident they will love what they see. Ubuntu 14.04 embodies the true spirit of Ubuntu; innovation, openness, and people.

But as we wait to see the reviews let’s take a moment for each other. Now is a great time to reach out to each other and those Ubuntu folks you know (and don’t know) and share some kudos, some thanks, and some great stories. Until we get to the day where machines make software, today software is made by people and great software is built by great people.

Thanks everyone for every ounce of effort you fed into Ubuntu and our many flavors. We just took another big leap forward towards our future.

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jono

I just wanted to let you folks know that I am recruiting for a community manager to join my team at Canonical.

I am looking for someone with strong technical knowledge of building Ubuntu (knowledge of how we release, how we build packages, bug management, governance etc), great community management skills, and someone who is willing to be challenged and grow in their skills and capabilities.

My goal with everyone who joins my team is not just to help them be successful in their work, but to help them be the very best at what they do in our industry. As such I am looking for someone with a passion to be successful and grow.

I think it is a great opportunity and to be part of a great team. Details of the job are available here – please apply if you are interested!?

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jono

At the last Ubuntu Developer Summit we discussed the idea of making our regular online summit serve more than just developers. We are interested in showcasing not just the developer-orientated discussion sessions that we currently have, but also including content such as presentations, demos, tutorials, and other topics.

I just wanted to give everyone a heads up that the first Ubuntu Online Summit will happen from 10th – 12th June 2014. The website is not yet updated (we are going to keep everything on summit.ubuntu.com and uds.ubuntu.com can point there, and Michael is making the changes to bring over the static content).

We are really keen to get ideas for how the event can run so I am scheduling a hangout on Thurs 10th April at 5pm UTC on Ubuntu On Air where I would welcome ideas and input. I hope to see you there!

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jono

Next week we have our Ubuntu Developer Summit, taking place online from Tues 11th March 2014 – Thurs 13th March 2014. Go and see the schedule – we still have lots of schedule space if you want to run a session. For details of how to propose a session, see this guide.

I just want to highlight a session I would like to really invite input on in particular.

Today the online Ubuntu Developer Summit is largely based on the formula from our physical UDSs that we used to have, and that formula goes back to 2004. While these have traditionally served the project well, I am cognizant that our community is much bigger and more diverse than it used to be, and our current Ubuntu Developer Summit doesn’t serve our wider community as well as it could; there is more to Ubuntu to rigorous software engineering.

UDS is great if you are a developer focused on building software and ensuring you have a plan to do so, but for our translators, advocates, marketeers, app developers, and more…the format doesn’t suit those communities as well.

As such, I would like to discuss this and explore opportunities where UDS could serve our wider community better. The session is here and is on Wed 12th March at 15.00UTC. I hope you can join me!

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jono

So, today we announced the Ubuntu App Showdown where you can build apps with the Ubuntu SDK and win some awesome prizes such as the Nexus 7 (2013) tablet and the Meizu MX3.

This got me thinking, which apps would a love to see on Ubuntu as part of the competition? Well, this is them, and hopefully they will be food for thought for some developers:

  • Email Client – this would be an email client that looks and functions like Discourse. With it you could connect to an IMAP/Gmail account, see mail as threads, reply to mails, create and send new emails etc. Bonus points for supporting multiple accounts.
  • Social Media Client – I haven’t found a Twitter and other social media client that works well for me. This one would show my timeline of tweets, have mentions on a different tab/screen, and support searches too. It would use the Online Accounts platform service to connect.
  • Google+ Client – I would love to see a G+ client that integrates neatly into Ubuntu. It would need to browse my timeline, show notifications, let me reply to posts and add +1s, and browse communities.
  • Ubuntu LoCo Teams App – an app where I can view the content from loco.ubuntu.com such as browsing teams, seeing current and up-coming events, browse the blog, and include the content in the Ubuntu Advocacy Kit. The power in this app would be looking like a beautiful app that any LoCo member can use to find cool events and do interesting things.
  • Riff Recorder – an audio recording app where I can adjust the volume of the mic (for when I am in a room with lots of noise such as a rehearsal) and then record the audio at that level and have the ability to share it somewhere.

If anyone manages to build these apps, you will make me a very happy man. :-)

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jono

Recently Randall did some research into what people want to see on Planet Ubuntu. This has been followed up by Stuart with a set of concerns.

I agree with both of them.

I think the gist of Randall’s view is that he would like to encourage more fun, interesting, and diverse Ubuntu-related content. I think Randall wants to see fun stories of LoCo events, interesting Ubuntu work going on, cool Ubuntu apps, details of new features, and more. I agree with Randall here, and would love to see the same.

I think the gist of Stuart’s view is that the personal stories on Planet Ubuntu is a wonderful part of being in a community. Ubuntu is not just about Ubuntu, it is about the stories and the lives of the people who contribute to our community. I agree with Stuart here too.

I think we need a mix. Ideally we want to see interesting posts about people’s contributions to Ubuntu, but also about their non-Ubuntu lives too.

I would like to see Planet Ubuntu stick to its core goal: to be a place where you can look into the lives of Ubuntu members and explore their Ubuntu work as well as their non-Ubuntu thoughts and views.

The problem here is really with Ubuntu membership. Some people are still Ubuntu members who haven’t contributed to Ubuntu for a long time and thus we see lots of non-Ubuntu content, but rarely hear about their contributions. I would recommend we deactivate membership for those who are not actively contributing (active being significant and sustained contributions, as per our charter); this will then tighten up which feeds appear on planet and we will get a nice mix of both Ubuntu and person content.

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jono

2014 is going to be a great year for Ubuntu App Developers. We laid down some fantastic foundations in 2013, but this year we want to extend and grow our community in multiple directions…building a solid, empowered on-ramp for creating awesome apps for Ubuntu.

…but we can’t do this alone, we need your help!

One effort here is to work with our fantastic LoCo Team Community to run a series of Ubuntu App Developer schools across the world. We have one of the greatest advocacy communities anywhere, so this seems like a perfect match.

Fortunately, David Planella has already created some awesome slides and a good tutorial that these schools can work from (he did this for a previous event), and we are here to help provide help and guidance about how to run an event.

As such, we are looking for volunteers to run a local Ubuntu App Dev school in your area. Doing this is as simple as:

  • Find a place to run an event and pick a date when to run it.
  • Find some other folks in your LoCo who would be interested in helping.
  • Get the material and tune it for your event if needed.
  • Promote the event locally and encourage people to join.
  • Practice the material a few times before the big day, then show up, run the class and have fun.
  • Take lots of pictures!

The last step is really important as we would like to create a montage of the events. :-)

So, if you are interested in participating, send me an email to jono@ubuntu.com and mention which LoCo team you are part of and where you would run the event, and lets make the magic happen!

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jono

Happy new year, friends!

2013 was a phenomenal year for Ubuntu. It is difficult to believe that it was just a year ago today that we announced Ubuntu for phones. Since then we have built and released the first version of Ubuntu for phones complete with core apps, delivered Mir in production on the phone, built a vastly simplified and more powerful new app delivery platform complete with full security sand-boxing, created a powerful smart scopes service to bring the power of native search and online content to devices, delivered a new SDK with support for QML, HTML5, and Scopes, built an entirely new developer.ubuntu.com, created extensive CI and testing infrastructure to ensure quality as we evolve our platform, shipped two desktop releases, extended the charm store, delivered Juju Gui, spun up multiple clouds with Juju, and much more.

In terms of Ubuntu for devices, I mentally picture 2013 as the year when we put much of the core foundational pieces in place. Everything I just mentioned were all huge but significant pieces of delivering a world-class Free Software convergence platform. Building this platform is not as simple as building a sexy GUI; there is lots of complex foundational work that needs doing, and I am incredibly proud of everyone who participated in getting us to where we are today…it is a true testament of collaborative development involving many communities and contributors from around the world.

So, 2013 was an intense year with lots of work, some tough decisions, and lots of late (and sometimes stressful) nights, but it laid down the core pillars of what our future holds. But what about 2014?

This time next year we will have a single platform code-base for phone, tablet, and desktop that adapts to harness the form-factor and power of each device it runs on. This is not just the aesthetics of convergence, it is real convergence at the code level. This will be complemented by an Ubuntu SDK in which you can write an app once and deliver it to any of these devices, and an eco-system in which you can freely publish or sell apps, content, and more with a powerful set of payment tools.

These pieces will appear one phase at a time throughout 2014. We are focusing on finishing the convergent pieces on phone first, then bringing them to tablet, and then finally bringing our desktop over to the new convergent platform. Every piece of new technology that we built in 2013 will be consumed across all of these form-factors in 2014; every line of code is an investment in our future.

Even more importantly though, 2014 will be the year when we see this new era of Ubuntu convergence shipping to consumers. This will open up Ubuntu to millions of additional users, provide an opportunity for app developers to get in on the ground floor in delivering powerful apps, and build more opportunity for our community than ever before.

I wish I could tell you that 2014 is going to be more relaxing than 2013. It isn’t. It is going to be a roller-coaster. There are going to be some late nights, some stressful times, some shit-storms, and some unnecessary politics, but my goal is to help keep us working together as a community, keep us focused on the bigger picture, keep our discourse constructive, and to keep the fun in Ubuntu.

Let’s do this.

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jono

Recently the Ubuntu newswires have been buzzing with the news that we have won our first smartphone partner.

Now, let’s get the elephant in the room out of the way – I am not telling you who it is. It is not my place here to share confidential details about business-to-business relationships such as this. Rest assured though, I know the folks working on these relationships and there is a tremendous amount of opportunity for Ubuntu in these discussions; OEMs, carriers, ISVs and more are very interested in exploring Ubuntu for future products.

This is…spoiler alert…fantastic news.

But what does this news really mean for Ubuntu, and to what extent do our community play a part? Let’s dig into this a little bit.

I joined Ubuntu because I want to help an effort to bring technological elegance and freedom to people. Both of these are essential; elegant proprietary software and complex Free Software are both limited in the opportunities they bring to people and who can harness them. A good balance of both is what we strive to achieve in Ubuntu.

For many years Ubuntu has been available to download and install on your computer. Today you can download Ubuntu for your desktop computer, phone, tablet, and you can deploy it to your public or private cloud.


Soon.

While this provides a reliable distribution point for those in the know, it remains an unknown service for those not in the know. Put simply: most normal people don’t do this. People like you and me, who read nerdy blogs like mine, often do this.

Now, we often talk about how we have around 20million Ubuntu users. To be fair, this will always be something of an informed estimation (made up from sales, downloads etc). As an example, if one person downloads Ubuntu they may install it on one computer. Alternatively, they could do the kind of work that Project Community Computers and Partimus do and use that download to install Ubuntu on hundreds of computers that potentially thousands of people will use. Again, put simply, it is difficult to get a firm idea of current numbers of users.

Irrespective though, whatever figure we have…such as 20million…this number is fundamentally defined by our available distribution mechanisms. The formula here is simple: if we increase the opportunity for Ubuntu to be distributed, we get more users…

…and this is where the chain reaction begins.


Wrong chain reaction.

If we have more users, we get more ISVs such as Adobe, Autodesk, Zynga, Rovio and others who want to use Ubuntu as a channel. If we get more apps from ISVs we get more interest from OEMs, carriers, and others. If we get more OEMs and carriers, we get more enterprise, creative-industry, and educational deployments. If we get more deployments we see more businesses selling support, services, training, people writing books, seminars, and other areas of focus. This effectively creates an eco-system around Ubuntu which in turn lowers the bar enough that any consumer can use and try it…thus putting Free Software in the hands of the masses.

Put simply once more: if we make Ubuntu commercially successful, it will put Free Software in the hands of more people.

Now, on the desktop side of things we have Ubuntu pre-installed on four of the largest OEMs on the planet, and while industry-wide annual PC shipments are dropping more and more each year, fortunately, we have positioned ourselves in a sweet spot. We can continue to fulfill our position as the third most popular Operating System for desktop/laptop computers, while providing a simple on-ramp to bring Ubuntu to these other devices as part of our wider convergence story.

As such, our first commercial smartphone partner is where we light the touch-paper that starts that chain reaction. This is good for Ubuntu, consumers, app developers, small businesses selling services, and for other OEMs/carriers who are exploring Ubuntu. All of this is good for Free Software.

So where does the community fit into this? Surely all of this work is going to be the domain of paid Canonical engineers delivering whatever the secret smartphone partner wants?


Recent Canonical sprint at the Marriott City Center, Oakland

Not at all.

Delivering a shippable device has many different technology components: hardware enablement, display server (Mir), shell (Unity 8), developer platform and SDK, core applications that ship with the device, quality assurance, language packs, third-party scopes and services, and more.

This is just what sits on the device. Outside of it we also need effective governance, event planning, local user group advocacy and campaigns, app developer growth and support, general documentation and support, web and communications services, accessibility, and more.

Every one of these areas (with the probable exception of specifically working with customers around enabling their specific device) welcomes and needs our community to help. Some of these areas are better set up collaboratively with our community than others…but not working collaboratively with our community is a bug, not a feature.

Believe me when I say there is no shortage of things for us to do. We have a long but exciting road ahead of us, and I am looking at my team to help support our community in finding something fun, rewarding, and productive to work on. There are few things in life more satisfying than putting your brick in the wall as part of a global effort to bring technological change to people. I hope you are joining us for the ride.

If you want to help and get stuck, email me at jono@ubuntu.com. I am happy to help get you started.

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jono

In every release cycle we have a number of events organized that brings our community together to create things, share ideas and knowledge, and more. I just wanted to share the latest raft of planned events:

  • Ubuntu App Development Sprint – 12th Dec – an online sprint where we will continue where we left off at UDS to discuss pieces we need to deliver as part of the Ubuntu App Developer platform.
  • Ubuntu App Developer Week – 20th – 25th Jan – a week of tutorials for getting started with the Ubuntu SDK. Perfect for developers new to the Ubuntu SDK!
  • Ubuntu Developer Week – 3rd – 7th March – a week of sessions designed for Ubuntu developers who want to fix bugs, deliver new packages, and other Operating System-level tasks.
  • Ubuntu Global Jam – 4th – 6th April – the primary event where our LoCo teams get together to collaborate, share ideas, and share knowledge. Be sure to organize an event near you!
  • Ubuntu Open Week – 21 – 25th April – a week of tutorials the week after a new release for new users how to get started.

If you are interesting in helping with these events, be sure to let me know in the comments!

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jono

Free Software is not just software or a philosophical attitude to freely available software. Free Software is a catalyst for change in a constantly evolving world that is becoming more and more dependent on technology. Unfortunately while many of us are getting faster and faster computers on our desktops and in our pockets, for many the digital divide is ever wide as it has always been.

I have always had a soft spot for those organizations who selflessly bring Free Software to those for whom technology is a missing link in their lives. I spent two years doing this with OpenAdvantage before I joined Canonical, bringing technology to a region where many manual labourers were out of work and needing access to technology and training to upskill and get new jobs to support their families. Likewise groups like A2RT, FreeGeek, Partimus and more doing similar great work.

When I was speaking at Ohio Linux Fest earlier this year I met the Project Community Computers. Emma from System76 told me they wanted to talk to me about their project (they use Ubuntu extensively across their projects) so I had a meeting with them. The project essentially takes Ubuntu and puts it on recycled computers and they have set up over 20 educational labs around the world.

All out of their own pocket. All on their own time.

I was blown away by their accomplishments.

The guys are smart, selfless, motivated, and harnessing the truest power of Free Software…to break down the digital divide. They are not just talking a big game…they are playing a big game with so many accomplishments so far. It is projects like this why I got involved in Free Software and Ubuntu in the first place.

The team were looking for opportunities for funding their continued work and I suggested they crowd-fund it, an idea that they had already thought about, so I am delighted to see they have kicked their campaign off at http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/project-community-computers.

See their campaign video below:

Project: Community Computers Indiegogo Campaign Launch Video from Project: Community Computers on Vimeo.

Can’t see it? See it here!

Please go and invest in this tremendous team and project; I have no doubt that every penny will be put to good use.

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jono

Ubuntu 13.10 is out, get it here!

This release packs some significant punch – we have the first version of Ubuntu for phones, Mir is shipping on the phone images, a new Ubuntu SDK, an entirely new app developer upload experience, new version of Juju, Juju GUI, smart scopes integrated into the desktop and phone, and more.

The build-up to 13.10 has been intense. Although our core values have remained unchanged, Ubuntu has evolved over the years as we have worked to solve the larger scale challenges facing a consumer and cloud Linux operating system. Interestingly, it feels like we have also changed in the intensity and ambition of how we build Ubuntu. Maybe this is hindsight lying to me, but release cycles seem more intense, more focused, and more ambitious than they have ever felt before. When I compare 13.10 with 11.10 it feels like two different beasts in terms of the goals, opportunities, and challenges we are looking to solve. I feel we are more ambitious in approaching the real challenges we need to focus on.

From a personal perspective, release day is always a mix of emotions. We all put our heart and souls into what we do. For most of us Ubuntu is not just a job or a hobby…it is a passion and a lifestyle; we are not just building software here, but building technological change. My passion for Ubuntu has always been connected to making Open Source available to all; Free Software code is interesting and important, but a lot less valuable if regular people can’t use it to enrich and improve their lives. Accessible, easy to use, safe, and secure Free Software helps people to learn, be creative, be productive, and live better lives. At the heart of this opportunity are communities with a shared sense of identity, mission, and belonging. Communities bring out the best in human beings…they teach us to share, to inspire, and to create together.

More than anything, communities make having a passion fun. Working together with others who share your passion is inspiring and motivating, and the Ubuntu community is a wonderful source of inspiration. I feel blessed to work with so many wonderful people every day, all over the world. Thank-you.

As such, release day always feels to me like the world is peeking into our fishbowl to judge how colorful our fins are. I have a pretty thick skin, but I can’t help feeling a little exposed when it comes to feedback about a new release. I care what people think about Ubuntu…I care that people feel as connected and inspired by it as I do. Conversely, given that a global community of volunteers feed into making Ubuntu, I feel somewhat accountable that those looking into our fishbowl appreciate the efforts of everyone who has contributed.

We should never forget that Ubuntu and Open Source is a gift culture. People take time away from their families, friends, and Grand Theft Auto V to help bring their passion to our community via the gift of their contributions. I always want release day to be a celebration of our wider set of efforts. This is one of the things I love about Ubuntu: it is fueled by fundamentally good people. We don’t always agree…but we all share the same gene that makes us want to make the world a better place with Free Software. The only difference is where we draw the lines in the sand about how we do that.

In Ubuntu 13.10 we have delivered the first major milestone in our convergence story of the future…that milestone is Ubuntu for phones. I am hugely proud of the team for what they achieved here. This was a ballsy and ambitious goal and everyone hit it with aplomb. We have work to do, but the core foundation is stable, secure, and very usable as a daily phone. I have been using my Ubuntu phone since May and I love it.

Some have felt that the desktop release of Ubuntu 13.10 feels a little thin on the ground in terms of features apart from smart scopes and a revised set of versions of the software we ship. This is a fair assertion, but remember that everything that went into the phone will ultimate hit the desktop: Unity 8, Mir, image-based updates, the developer platform, SDK, developer portal and more. This was a significant amount of engineering, all of which is laying the groundwork for a single, converged Free Software platform that runs across the phone, desktop, tablet, and TV. As such, while you might not see the technology applied to the desktop yet, we moved the needle significantly forward in achieving this.

On the server and cloud side we have seen significant improvements with Ubuntu 13.10 too. Ubuntu continues to be the most popular guest OS on the cloud and Juju has become more powerful and efficient than ever before. Our charm store has grown significantly in terms of the available charms as well as the capabilities of existing charms, and Juju makes it simple and easy to spin up a complex deployment and scale up and out where needed. This has been eased by Juju GUI which makes transitioning from the service topology on the office white-board to an active running service devilishly simple.

Our community has been at the core of all of these efforts. Just as one example, we had over 140 community members contribute to building the core apps for the phone (Calculator, Calendar, Clock etc). We have also had significant numbers of contributions of auto-pilot tests, countless Juju charms, hundreds of translations, documentation brought up to date, and many events organized to help our community grow and prosper.

Some people have wondered why I have focused members of my team so much on app developers and growing our charmers community. The reason is simple: for Ubuntu to be successful we need awesome content. We need great apps, services, music, videos, search results and more. People don’t use devices, systems and clouds because the shell looks nice, they use these systems to consume, create, and share things. Ubuntu is all about a focus on content, and apps and charms are a key part of this. Every app and charm enriches Ubuntu that little bit more, and as such we need to build a new community of developers who are passionate about Ubuntu being able to deliver their creative ideas and visions.

This work has not just been building buzz on Google+. My team architected much of the new app upload process, we ran the Ubuntu App Showdown to hammer the details out of the developer platform, we built developer.ubuntu.com and our support resources, , ran the core apps programme, have been running the Juju charm contest, coordinating charm schools, and working with upstreams and developers to deliver their content. Our goal has been to make the developer experience on Ubuntu world class. We still have work to do, but I am so proud of the efforts of the team so far.

Where this counts strategically is that all of this work will ultimately feed into LoCo teams and elsewhere that may not currently feel we are spending too much time on (although rest assured in 14.04 we will focus on LoCos some more). By building an awesome content community it will give our LoCos a better, more fulfilling platform to share, advocate, and promote. In a world of limited resources, this is how I feel I can best use my team’s time.

Well, today is Thursday 17th October 2013 and we just shipped Ubuntu 13.10 for phones, servers, desktops, and clouds.

Tomorrow is Friday 18th October 2013 and we start work on Ubuntu 14.04. This is going to be our biggest LTS yet. You can join us to help us shape Ubuntu 14.04 at our next Ubuntu Developer Summit on 19-21 November 2013 from 2pm-8pm UTC. Everyone is welcome, our summit is open to all and takes place online.

We have tremendous opportunity on the road ahead of us. We are laying down the foundations for a new future of convergence and cloud service orchestration. Today was an important check-point on our journey. Together as a community we have the opportunity to bring more and more technological change to people than ever before. So, go out tonight, celebrate, and tomorrow, let’s get the Ubuntu 14.04 train on the track and make it roar.

Thank-you everyone for all of your contributions.

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jono

I have talked in the past about how critical I feel app developers are to the Ubuntu convergence story. If developers can go from idea to implementation to publishing quickly and easily, it will make the overall Ubuntu platform more attractive and featureful for users, partners, OEMs, carriers and more.

As such, we are working hard to make Ubuntu a platform where you can match your creativity with the tools you need to deliver your creative vision to others. This has included a powerful SDK, a simple and effective app upload process, a new version of developer.ubuntu.com that will be landing next week, and more.

Now we are finalizing much of the core infrastructure (SDK, docs, knowledge, support, publishing) I really want to focus more and more on widening the awareness of Ubuntu as a powerful and fun developer platform.

There are all kinds of things we can do – video tutorials, training weeks, local tutorial schools, app contests, and more, and we are really keen to hear your ideas and look for those who want to help spread the word about Ubuntu as a powerful converged developer platform.

How Do I Help?

If you are interested in helping, we are looking for ideas on this pad; you will need to be a member of this team to edit, so be sure to join that team first. Feel free to braindump your ideas for ways in which we can get out to more developers and help them realize their creative ideas. The more ideas the better!

Then, on Tuesday 24th Sep at 3pm UTC, we will be running a live Google+ Hangout meeting on Ubuntu On Air to review the ideas and start making plans. If you add an idea to the pad it would be awesome if you could join the session too.

I would love to encourage you all to join and help build the developer platform of the future across phones, desktops, tablets, and more!

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jono

I believe that in the entire history of Ubuntu we are at the most exciting time we have ever experienced.

With Ubuntu we set out with a clear mission: to build an elegant, beautiful, Free Software platform that brings powerful, easily accessible, technology to all. We are gritted in our determination around this mission.

All the pieces are starting to come together. A powerful converged platform, a beautiful user experience, a new SDK and app upload process, powerful cloud orchestration technologies, and a growing eco-system of users, app developers, and devops.

Awesome technology is not enough though. Silicon Valley is littered with the corpses of many great technologies that didn’t catch on. The key to successful, living, breathing technology is adoption and passionate users and developers.

Building Adoption

LoCo Teams are a critical piece of how we drive this adoption.

LoCo teams are our front-line troops out there living Ubuntu and sharing it with others. If we have successful LoCo teams we will have a successful Ubuntu.

In recent years we have faced some challenges with LoCo Teams though. Fewer people have been participating in teams, we have some rather bureaucratic processes in place for how and where people can form teams, and LoCo teams are not as optimized for success as they could be. Put simple, I feel our LoCo Team community could benefit from stronger and more visible leadership.

I want to change this. I want to re-energize our LoCo community to bring out the best in our wider community and to open doors to more and more people who can be touched by Ubuntu. I am not talking about just welcoming Linux fans to LoCo teams…but app developers, content creators, devops, partners, general users, and more.

The potential is tantalizing.

For us to achieve this though we need a crisp strategy.

At UDS the other day we had a session that I found personally rather frustrating. At every UDS we always have a session about LoCo Teams, and there are always lots of ideas around what LoCo teams should be doing and how we can support them. These ideas are usually expressed as “we should do XYZ” or “the problem with LoCo teams is XYZ and we need to fix that“. We always have lots of ideas but few people are willing to sign up to work items to deliver that work.

Ideas are easy to have, delivering real practical solutions that drive improvements is harder, and we need more of the latter. We need people who are willing to make change happen in a practical way.

There is too much opportunity with Ubuntu and bringing technology freedom to people to let our LoCo Teams wither on the vine.

Help Us Lead

Recently the LoCo Council announced a re-election for seats on the next council. The LoCo Council is the most natural place for this leadership to occur, and I want to encourage those of you who are willing to commit the time and effort to bring change to LoCo Teams to apply to join.

I want to transition the mental model of how the LoCo Council works from merely joining meetings and reacting to agenda items and tending to the business of the week. I want to see the council bring leadership, challenge the norms, challenge our bottlenecks, and build a culture of innovation and change around our LoCo Teams.

Our community is laden with great people who can bring this kind of leadership, and I want to encourage you to join the council.

We need people who are willing to commit more than providing +1 and -1 votes on our LoCo Council meetings, but people who want to think about the next generation of LoCo Teams and what work needs to be completed to achieve that vision, and commit to driving it forward. I would ask that only those of you willing to (a) lead and (b) commit time to actively participate in the strategy the council focuses on should apply. If you can only commit to joining the LoCo Council meetings and not driving strategy and leadership forward, please don’t apply to join.

This is not to suggest our existing and previous LoCo Councils has and have not been doing great work; I am tremendously thankful for their remarkable contributions. I just think we need to amp up our game, in much of the same way we have been amping up the Ubuntu platform. Now is our opportunity and we need to grasp it with both hands.

This is a tremendous opportunity for great leaders to have a real world-changing impact on Ubuntu and Free Software in general.

If you are excited about the opportunity of re-energizing LoCo Teams, bringing leadership, and challenging the norm, I strongly encourage you to apply. Please share your ideas for leadership and change in your application.

I am doggedly committed to helping to make our LoCo Teams successful and I have some ideas around how we do this when the new council is formed. I am looking forward to working with our new generation of leaders to help our LoCo Teams to do incredible world-changing work with an incredible world-changing platform.

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jono

One week ago today we kicked off the Ubuntu Edge Indigogo Campaign; a campaign to raise $32million using the crowd-funding site Indigogo to build the beautiful Ubuntu Edge device that can run Ubuntu Phone and Android and boot a full Ubuntu desktop running off the phone itself. Be sure to see video describing the device and the software running on it.

This campaign is ambitious, but important for a few reasons: it helps us to produce a limited run of devices perfectly crafted around the Ubuntu convergence vision, but also to utilize crowd-funding as a tool to innovate in an entrenched industry.

Currently we have raised over $7million with over 15,000 funders.

In this post I wanted to summarize the progress we have made in our first week…and what a week it was!

Our first day was a record-setter. We were the fastest project in crowd-funding history to reach $2million and the highest-raised campaign in the history of Indigogo. At around 12 hours in we had already raised 10% of our goal.

As the week progressed a flurry of media attention wrapped around the Ubuntu Edge campaign. We have had coverage on a range of media outlets, including:

We also saw OMG! Ubuntu!, one of the most popular Ubuntu sites online, integrate the Ubuntu Edge campaign into their site, providing an up to date ticker of the amount raised and other features.

We saw extensive coverage of the Ubuntu Edge campaign in video form too. I want to highlight two interesting highlights here. Firstly, Jane Silber, Canonical CEO talked about the campaign on CNBC:

Can’t see it? See it here!

I also strongly recommend you see Marques Brownlee’s video overview of Ubuntu Edge, which provides a fantastic overview of the campaign:

Can’t see it? See it here!

As the week progressed we also saw Mark Shuttleworth, Ubuntu Founder, doing a Reddit AMA that covered a lot of ground (including talking about six years of support for Ubuntu Edge) and answered many questions from those following the campaign.

Victor Palau also demonstrated Ubuntu desktop running on a lower-powered Nexus 4 to demonstrate the convergence technology, and a community member even put together a realistic interactive 3D model of the Ubuntu Edge.

Finally, we announced an awesome referral campaign. Whether you’ve contributed $20 or $2,000, you all have the chance to win something extra special: a personalised Ubuntu Edge phone engraved with your name. You can find the details of the campaign here.

Of course, for this prize to exist the campaign has to hit its target, so be sure to spread the word using every possible medium you have access to. Our goal is to make history, and every one of you can help us write that history and get a historical special-edition customized Ubuntu Edge in the process.

Week Two

Arguably our next milestone in the Ubuntu Edge campaign is to beat the crowd-funding record for the highest amount of money that has ever been raised. This currently stands at a shade over $10million and given that we are already over $7million, we are making good progress towards this goal.

One piece of feedback we have received from many of you is a desire for a lower dollar-amount perk for those who can’t afford to purchase an Ubuntu Edge device but still want to support the campaign. We are currently working on this right now, and look forward to announcing this soon.

So, let’s make the magic happen.

Visit the Ubuntu Edge campaign page

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jono

Ever since we announced the Ubuntu Edge campaign, we have seen a remarkable amount of interest in the campaign. Here are some highlights:

I also strongly recommend you see Marques Brownlee’s video overview of Ubuntu Edge, which provides a fantastic overview of the campaign:

Can’t see it? See it here!

Heading Towards History

The highest amount of money raised in crowd-sourcing history is around $10million and as I write this we are currently at $6.6million.

We have already set records for the fastest ever $2million raised and the highest amount of money ever raised on Indigogo, so let’s smash through the $10million figure and bring Ubuntu forward into crowd-funding history. This campaign is not just about funding the beautiful, powerful, converged Ubuntu Edge and having your phone and desktop in your pocket, but also demonstrating how truly disruptive crowd-funding can be.

Be sure to go and pledge!

The Ubuntu Edge Referral Contest

So many of you have been busy spreading the word (helping us to smash through the $6 million mark already) that to keep that momentum going, we want to give you a special incentive.

Whether you’ve contributed $20 or $2,000, you all have the chance to win something extra special: a personalised Ubuntu Edge phone engraved with your name.

Of course, for this prize to exist the campaign has to hit its target, so be sure to spread the word using every possible medium you have access to. Our goal is to make history, and every one of you can help us write that history and get a historical special-edition customized Ubuntu Edge in the process.

How To Enter

  1. Make sure you’re logged in to Indiegogo.
  2. Get your unique Share This Campaign link from the Ubuntu Edge page (just below the video), and share it via social media, email or any other method you can think of. Click the Embed and Email buttons for simple instructions to add an Ubuntu Edge widget to your website or email signature.
  3. Every time someone clicks your link or widget and then contributes money to the campaign, you’ve made a successful referral.

The Rules

You have one week. The person who drives the most money in referral contributions between now and 4.00pm BST on Friday 2 August will win this great prize. (Prize is conditional on the Ubuntu Edge being fully funded.)

Every extra backer takes us closer to our goal, and by taking part you’ll be playing a vital role in getting the Ubuntu Edge made.

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jono

We are about 12 hours into the Ubuntu Edge Indigogo Campaign and we are about to hit 10% of the full goal.

Awesome.

Be sure to go and support the campaign!

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jono

Last week many of you will have seen the teasers that were shared on www.ubuntu.com. As you can imagine, our community, the press, and others picked up on this with rampant curiosity of what was to come. I am delighted to see the news is now out there, and boy, is this exciting.

In a nutshell, today we are kicking off an Indigogo crowdfunding campaign to fund a fully converged device called Ubuntu Edge.

Can’t see the video? See it here!

The Ubuntu Edge will dual boot Ubuntu and Android, and will transform into a PC when docked with a monitor, with the full Ubuntu desktop and shared access to all the phone’s files. For this it needs the power of a PC, so Ubuntu Edge will be equipped with the latest, fastest processor, at least 4GB of RAM and a massive 128GB of storage.

Every week on my weekly Q&A many of you ask when you can buy a fully converged Ubuntu device in which you can use it as a phone and boot a desktop, and here it is. Now is the opportunity to not only buy one, but to contribute to showing your support for an Ubuntu converged device by contributing to the campaign.

The Ubuntu Edge is not only functionally powerful though. This beautifully crafted device replaces the traditional glass screen with a pure Sapphire crystal, so tough it could only be scratched by diamond. It will also pioneer the use of long-life silicon anode battery technology. A special dual-LTE solution will allow high-speed roaming with access to 4G-LTE broadband in both Europe and the US.

I know many of you who are reading this will be interested in the technical specs, which are:

  • Dual-boot Ubuntu Edge into either Ubuntu or Android
  • Becomes a fully integrated Ubuntu desktop PC when docked
  • Fast and powerful device with multi-core CPU and at least 4GB RAM
  • 128GB of storage for photos, music, content
  • 4.5in 1,280 x 720 HD display with pure sapphire crystal screen, the hardest natural substance after diamond
  • Cameras made for low-light, fast response and close up pictures: 8mp rear camera, 2mp front
  • Faster connection all over the world with dual-LTE, dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4, NFC
  • Connect to HDMI TVs and monitors easily with MHL connector, 3.5mm jack
  • GPS, accelerometer, gyro, proximity sensor, compass, barometer
  • Stereo speakers with HD audio, dual-mic recording, Active Noise Cancellation
  • Silicon-anode Li-Ion battery
  • 64 x 9 x 124mm.

(specifications are subject to change)

All in all this is a beautiful powerhouse for running a fully converged Ubuntu experience – not just a phone, but a phone and your desktop all in one package that looks and feels uniquely Ubuntu.

The Campaign

For the next 30 days our goal is to reach $32 million, an unprecedented amount raised in a crowd-sourcing campaign. Fortunately we have an incredible global community, and we are asking each of you to contribute what you can to the campaign.

The idea is simple: by committing $600 (£394) on day one, or $810 (£532) thereafter, you will receive one of these ground-breaking mobile devices in May 2014. This is the lowest price we can deliver this high-powered hardware specification, range of features, and high-quality build quality. We want to ensure Ubuntu supporters get the very best quality device.

If you can’t quite afford to buy an Ubuntu Edge, you can contribute smaller amounts too, and we also have some additional perks too for those of you who want to contribute more widely to the campaign.

The Day One Deal

I just want to stress that for the very first day (which hopefully you are reading this on), you can pick up the Ubuntu Edge for a special lower price of $600. From Day 2 onwards the price will go up to $810.

This $600 offer runs out on Tuesday 23rd July at 16:00 BST, so be sure to get your order in!

So, head to the Indigogo page and grab an Ubuntu Edge, not only reserving a beautiful, powerful convergent Ubuntu device, but also demonstrating your support for Ubuntu converged devices.

Before I wrap up, we want to be very clear about something: his campaign does not mean Canonical has stopped working with OEMs and carriers to bring Ubuntu to other phones and devices; those discussions are productive and on-going.

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jono

The Ubuntu community is a core part of what makes us what we are, and right at the center of that are our Ubuntu Members. Ubuntu Members provide significant and sustained contributions over a wide range of areas such as packaging, documentation, programming, translations, advocacy, support, and more. We always want to do our best to recognize and appreciate our many members in the Ubuntu family, across these many different teams and our flavors.

We are pleased to announce a new benefit for new Ubuntu Members. When you become approved as an official Ubuntu Member, you will be mailed a printed certificate signed by Mark Shuttleworth, founder of the Ubuntu project to recognize your membership. We hope you put it up on your wall where you contribute to Ubuntu and bring freedom and openness to technology.

To find out more, and find out how to get yoru certificate, see this post on the fridge.

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jono

For some time now we have wanted to improve the community pages on ubuntu.com. While the pages there provided an overview of the community they really didn’t serve us or our new community members very well.

At UDS in Copenhagen back in November we agreed to work on a project to build a new set of community pages, but in a more scalable and accessible way, and in a way that is easier to maintain and improve. We worked together as a community to coordinate a docs jam, to identify what content was needed, start building some of the core material, put together a WordPress instance, get it themed and prettified, and then review the content and get it trimmed, concise, and accessible. The final result is fantastic, detailed, and provides a wonderful springboard for contributing. I plan on having a regular session at every forthcoming UDS to discuss improvements and refinements to the pages to ensure they serve our community well.

Many people contributed their time to this project, and I want to offer my thanks to everyone who helped drive it forward. I want to highlight one person in particular though, Daniel Holbach on my team, who I gave a very explicit goal of pulling together these many threads into a completed product by the end of May. Daniel deftly delivered this coordination with our community contributors, while also balancing the many other projects he is coordinating too. As ever, fantastic work, Daniel!

You can visit the site by simply going to ubuntu.com and clicking the Community link at the top. ;-)

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