Calling all Ubuntu power users: Upgrade to Ubuntu Precise Pangolin today!

It may of been a bit below the radar, but it was announced that for 12.04 LTS, there would be an improved focus on stability throughout the whole development cycle so more people could use it early on and catch problems with more time to fix them. There’s a specific team dedicated to making this happen for all subsequent releases from now on.

This release is probably the most important of them all. We’re releasing an LTS that will be supported for 5 years, that means it’ll be around until 2017!
Different people will help out in making it awesome in different ways, but one we can all help with is upgrading to Precise today. And I do mean today. I’ve upgraded all my computers, including my work laptop and it’s all generally running smoother than 11.10. And if it isn’t, file a bug with the relevant information, that’s what you upgraded for  🙂

So if you’ve been unsure about upgrading, please take the plunge and help out in making 12.04 a rock-solid release.

Ubuntu members over time

During the Community Council meeting yesterday we were talking about the general health and excitement levels of the community, and whether we were loosing a lot of members. I had a vague memory of us (Canonical) having an internal graph of number of members on the ~ubuntumember team, and I dug it up to see what story it told. As it turns out, it’s a very positive and healthy one \o/
Here’s the graph of number of Ubuntu members over time (there’s no data prior to Sept 2007):

Ubuntu member growth

Note that the curve starts to really go up around May of 2008, that’s when the membership boards took over member approvals from the Community Council.

Community Council

So, it seems my nomination to the Community Council has been accepted  \o/   It caught me a bit by surprise, so I’m struggling to add information to my wiki page again (it’s been 4 years since I last touched it!).
The current list of nominees is awesome, so I’m very happy that no matter what the results are it’s going to be a great board.

I wanted to share why I’d like to fill this position at this point in time with everybody so you know what you’re voting for  🙂

My main concern right now is the decrease in motivation I’ve seen in some places in the community, which is counter-intuitive because there’s more to do today than ever.
I’d like to get to the bottom of why this is happening and turn it around. I want to find new, exciting and clearly articulated goals for us to achieve and continue working on all the delicate balances we have between upstreams, Canonical, and Ubuntu.

I’d also like to find ways to more clearly document the different uses people have for Ubuntu and make sure either the default install is addressing them, or when impossible, communities are formed around spinning off the needed changes into its own thing to keep people productive and happy.

These are ambitious and hard things to do, but that’s the case for most things worth doing.


P.S. I’m going to be on a plane from London to Buenos Aires when the results get announced!

Ubuntu One Files for Android released!

After a long and interesting journey, today we’ve released Ubuntu One Files for Android.

The app started being developed by Michał Karnicki as a Google Summer of Code project, and he did such a fantastic job at it that we hired him on full time and teamed him up Chad Miller to end up releasing a fantastically polished app. It got immediately featured in the press!
It was built on top of our public APIs, documented here:

Besides it letting you access all your files stored in Ubuntu One, it has a very cool feature to auto-sync all the pictures on your phone, having an instant backup of them, and a convenient place to share them!

I’m super proud of the work we put out.

Also, as with all the rest of our clients, it’s open source and you can get it in Launchpad

Looking for a CSS/HTML guru to work on Ubuntu One

In the last few months, I’ve been lucky enough to be able to hire some exceptional people that were contributing to Ubuntu One in their free time. Every time someone comes in from the community, filled with excitement about being able to work on their pet project full time my job gets that much better.
So, everyone say hello to James Tait and Michał Karnicki!

Now we’re looking for a new team member to help us make the Ubuntu One website awesome. Someone who knows CSS and HTML inside out, cares deeply about doing things the best way possible and is passionate about their work.

If you’re interested or know anyone who may, the job posting is up on Canonical’s website.