An analysis of topics that need more amplification in a world of noise.

Do You Watch Ubuntu?

There is a very *very* interesting set of data over at DistroWatch that pertains to Ubuntu, the world's most popular free operating system, and the project with "an ethos worth spreading."

I highly recommend that you head over right now and check it out.

I won't spoil the surprise, but you might be entertained by knowing that our favourite platform has a commanding market lead. I hope you'll share your thoughts...

Ubuntu Community Week: We Have Lift-Off!

I'm pleased to announce that we're quickly gathering a stellar cast of presenters from some of the farthest reaches of our Ubuntu communities.

Want a sneak-peek? Check out some of the planned presentations on our Ubuntu Community Week wiki page.

Are you a "mover and shaker" in an Ubuntu community group (LoCo team)? Want to get involved? There is still time to volunteer to present. Here is a list of our "Most Wanted Topics". (Please hurry though!)

Ubuntu Community Week takes place from Mon 18 July to Fri 22 July, 2011.

I hope you'll mark your calendars and join us!

Come Together, Right Now, In Unity.

Way back in the 80's I used to listen to "Unity", on vinyl. Yes, apparently I'm that old. To my surprise, I found this (now rare) track online today, after all these years. Take a listen. The internets is magic ;)

Though the song is about in-fighting amongst DJ's and MC's in the 80's rap music scene, I think it has a lot to say about some of what has been going on in the Ubuntu world recently. We should all come together, right now, for the sake of the advancement of free software and its ideals. This is our best chance.

Speaking of coming together: Next Friday, UVLC's DJ's will be spinning our Unity mix at a *real* party. See you all there! You do know your way to Vancouver, right?

P.S. Leave your computers at home. We will have powerful magnetic fields at the door that will do bad things to them.

--
Narwhals by Kirby.WA. U-Party crest by yours truly. (CC-BY-SA)

Ubuntu: Install Community First

A new Ubuntu user lives in your city, your community. He's decided to install and use Ubuntu. He's writing about it.

Meet Tony Bradley, columnist for PC World's Business Center, fellow Human. Tony is conducting a "30 Days With Ubuntu"1 experiment. Tony has decided to try Ubuntu and to report on the ease-of-use and ease-of-switch from his perspective as "an avid, loyal Windows user since Windows 3.0." Tony is clearly amongst the ~93% of the market that is on the other side of the chasm.

Tony is struggling. I must admit that as I read his daily articles (now on Day 6), I shudder. My favourite operating system is apparently letting him down. Why, oh why?

Put yourself in Tony's shoes. You've decided to take a trip to a new city called "Ubuntu". You've just arrived here, and you're looking for guide posts and directions. You're lost.

Luckily, others have arrived before you, and they've produced a map to help you find what you need. Tragically, you don't know these people exist.

We have a saying in Vancouver Canada (home of my favourite LoCo): "Install Community First". This comes from a realization that no user transplanted from another system (or city) can possibly grasp Ubuntu and all of its nuances without a helpful human guide or two. There's too much noise (and not enough signal) out there.

I don't know Tony. But I do know why he's struggling so much. He forgot to install community. In fact he never knew it existed in the first place. How would he have known, since it doesn't exist in the proprietary world that he's used to? Frankly, this is our bug to fix, one city at a time, block-by-block.

"Houston, we have a problem." Can you help us on the ground?

--
Notes:
1. The original series title includes the "L" word. I've dropped it for the sake of amplifying the signal.

Ubuntu Community Week: It's New!

Did you know that we have several great online learning opportunities happening during this (Oneiric Ocelot) cycle?

One that I'm particularly jazzed about is Ubuntu Community Week.

Do you use Ubuntu? Do you know at least 30 other people in your town/city that do? Can you find them? Can you connect and share tips & tricks and collaborate with them? How do you get started?

Or, are you already a part of an active community or established team? Is it growing? Are there Ubuntu events that you can join nearby? Do you want to help your community team be even bigger, stronger, faster?

We have designed this brand new event to help you:

  • Find your community,
  • Participate in your community,
  • Create your community,
  • Energize your community, and
  • Elevate your community to new heights!

This event is scheduled to take place from Mon 18 July - Fri 22 July, 2011 on Lernid (your free online learning tool).

Help shape the event, or stay abreast of our plans by checking out the Ubuntu Community Week wiki page, and let's get Ubuntu community growing together!

Showcasing Our Amazing Ubuntu Community

Do you have a blog?
Do you live in a city/town?
Are you part of an Ubuntu LoCo (local community)?
Do you attend your LoCo's local events?

If you answered "yes" to these four important questions, you are on your way to increased readership, fame, fortune, ... er, while maybe the first two to start ;)

We're looking for people that blog about Ubuntu community, with passion.

Ubuntu community is the most exciting way to experience the world's MCAP (most collaboratively amazing project). When you step outside and meet other Ubuntu users and contributors magical things happen. When you share your stories, Ubuntu spreads.

Tell the world about it. Write about (and show) your encounters with Ubuntu community. Then, nominate yourself (or someone you know) to be one of the first bloggers in the world to be featured on the Ubuntu LoCo teams portal.

We're looking for 25 bloggers to showcase. And, you don't have to be an Ubuntu member to blog with us. Here's the place to add your feed: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/LoCoPortalFeeds

Please hurry!
We are going to launch something soon :)

A Week of Community Roundtables at UDS-O

Continuing my posts about UDS-O in Budapest Hungary...

A large part of Ubuntu is community and not code.

Why should you care?

Community is people ready to discover and enjoy Ubuntu. Community is a fan base ready to spread the word about Ubuntu. Community is code waiting to be written. Community is untapped contributions. Community is the next big feature. So, in other words, community is akin to jet fuel for Ubuntu: We get there (to 200 million users) faster when we have great community enablement.

With that on my mind, each morning at UDS-O, I participated in the daily "Community Roundtable" sessions hosted by Jono (our resident rock star) and team. This turned out to be an excellent way to meet community leaders, to understand the challenges we all face, and to share ideas about how to make Ubuntu even better.

Topics of discussion included:
- Revitalizing Ubuntu Weekly News
- Wrangling Mailing Lists to a Manageable Number
- Re-invigorating "Planet Ubuntu"
- Enabling Community Team Leadership
- Scaling Community
- Creating a WeMenu (or Community Lens) <-- My "not so secret" dream.
- Simplifying the UDS Experience
- Making loco.ubuntu.com Awesome

And that's just a partial list! As you can see, it was a busy week.

It's going to be a lot of fun working on as many of these as we can. All suggestions, input, and encouragement welcome.

Ubuntu's Leaders Speak: UDS-O Videos Available

If you weren't at UDS-O and missed the chance to hear Ubuntu's leaders speak about the future of the project or even to chat with them in person, please check out the videos that have begun appearing on the Ubuntu Developers channel on YouTube.

Here's a partial list. I suggest you watch them all:

Mark Shuttleworth Keynote
Jono Bacon Welcome (Ubuntu Community Manager)
Interview with Jane Silber (Canonical CEO)
Interview with Rick Spencer (Ubuntu Engineering Director)
Interview with Jason Warner (Ubuntu Desktop Manager)
Interview with Pete Graner (Ubuntu QA Manager)

See them here --> http://www.youtube.com/user/ubuntudevelopers

Some of the UDS-O working sessions have also begun appearing. Hopefully we'll see some more videos posted soon!

Humans on Stairs: "The Making of the UDS-O Group Shot"

One of the highlights of UDS is the group photo. This afternoon in Budapest, a few (hundred) Ubuntu contributors took time out of their busy sessions to pose and show the world the friendly community behind the software. Ubuntu is not just software.

I thought you might enjoy a peek behind the scenes, before the "official" photo is released ;)

photo1
These people deserve a hug!
photo2

Spot the photographer...

photo3

Now, on to more sessions and making Ubuntu even more awesome.

People in Red: The UDS-O Crew

You're looking at a photo of (some of) the UDS-crew as they prepared for opening day.

This is the fine group of volunteers that help set up the registration desk (really early) on Monday morning and then keep things running smoothly throughout the week. At UDS-O, room/topic schedule changes are abundant. To help reduce the confusion the Crew ensures that all the rooms are adequately signed in advance of each session and that people can find their way to them. There are also a lot of questions from attendees that pop-up about the venue, the process, the events, and other general tidbits.

Here's the illustrious Crew for this summit:

Chris Johnston - Crew Lead
Chris Chrisafulli
Elizabeth Krumbach
Jason DeRose
Tara Oldfield
Jim Campbell
Rikki Kite
Nigel Babu
Brian Curtis
Mike Basinger
Randall Ross

If you see them around at UDS-O, please say hi and introduce yourself. We're a friendly bunch ;)

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