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Planet Ubuntu postings

Jam-o-Meter's Precise Tally

The Ubuntu Global Jam (Precise Pangolin edition) is over. We jammed in 23 countries, in style, for the most important free software project in the world.

I have begun to see photos of the Jam posted to Flickr, Picasa, and Pix.ie. If you have photos but haven't posted them yet, please do so ASAP to be considered for our "Best of Jam" photo prize. Remember to use the following tags: #ubuntu, #ugj, #precise
(If you have a specific photo that you're especially proud of, then please include a link to it in the comments so I don't miss it.)

Thank you everyone who participated in this Ubuntu Global Jam. And an especially huge thanks to those of you who ran a Jam for the first time! You are the inspiration that we need to ignite Ubuntu. (Tell your friends.)

Here's the final word from the Jam-o-meter...

Over the next few days I'll be featuring stories and photos from a few memorable Jams. Please watch this space for updates!

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Jamming? Got Photos? Win Prize!

The Ubuntu Global Jam is underway. Dozens of teams around the world are officially jamming.

Are you? Please bring your camera, take some photos, and post them to Flickr, Picasa, or Pix.ie with the following tags:

Here's the fun part. If your photo is selected as the "Best of Jam" you'll receive very slick Vancouver t-shirt directly from downtown Vancouver compliments of me and as a little souvenir of Ubuntu Vancouver.

Ways to win... Take fun photos. Smile. Pose creatively. Include Jam.

Remember, you have to play (and tag) to win.

Good luck, and have fun jamming!

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Photo by rrnwexec. CC-BY-SA.

Eat Jam. Take Photos. Friday, Saturday, Sunday!

Please do me a favour. This weekend when you're at your favourite Ubuntu Global Jam event, bring jam! That's right. Real jam. The kind you eat.

                             "I started an Ubuntu group, and I eat JAM!"

Then, take photos of you and the other jammers enjoying jam. It's fun. It shows the world that Ubuntu is a fun, social and community-oriented project, and not all work. ("All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.")

Remember to post your photos to your favourite photo sharing site (Flickr, Picasa, Pix.ie) so we can show the world.

Tag your photos with #ubuntu #ugj and #precise


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Photo by rrnwexec. CC-BY-SA.

Jam-o-Meter Repaired

The non-stop-community-rock-star-machine (Jono) spotted an error in the Jam-o-Meter yesterday. We actually have more Jams than previously thought.

I've asked my development team that is currently in-hiding at our secret Jam bunker in the Cascade mountain range to double-check the Jam-o-Meter source. After reviewing 2.5 million lines of obfuscated Cobol they assure me that we'll have 100% accurate stats going forward.

Let's take a look at the real numbers:

Jam-o-Meter says: "32 is non-prime."Jam-o-Meter says: "32 is non-prime."

While I have you mesmerized by the power of Jam-o-Meter, I'd like to clarify a couple of additional points from yesterday's comments:

1) Yes, I am allowed to pluralize Jam by adding an "s". Watch me.

2) Everyone, even those that work in companies that begin with the letter "C" and have a US location in Lexington MA, is allowed and encouraged to run a Jam, and doing so is highly unlikely to result in an apocalyptic meltdown of society.

Do you eat food every day? Do you sometimes eat Jam? Great! Please register a Jam event on the awesome Ubuntu Loco team portal.

Do it right now, before the toast pops!

The Ubuntu Global Jam (Precise Pangolin edition) begins Friday March 2nd 2012.


For those keeping score, here's the final Jam-o-Meter from the last Global Jam we had (Oneiric Ocelot cycle):

A Jam Challenge for You

Let's take a look at the numbers:

Jam-o-Meter says, "Me Want More Jam!"Jam-o-Meter says, "Me Want More Jam!"

The Ubuntu Global Jam (Precise Pangolin edition) begins in less than one week: Friday March 2nd 2012.

There are 28 Ubuntu LoCo teams planning to participate, in 21 countries... Getting there. But, we're capable of much much more.

North America... I'm going to pick on you ;)

We have no takers from Canonical's office in Lexington, MA? That bug should be easy to fix, right? Canonical guys and gals, you have the people and the resources to head on out into your town and attract a few people to Ubuntu. Heck, hand out jars of jam on Saturday. Ask 100 random people on the street "What is Ubuntu?". Record their answers.

Back home. I live in a tiny (population) northern country (Canada) accounting for 1/3 of the Global Jams in North America while a huge country to the south, which I won't name by name, sleeps. (Think stars, stripes.) That's a bug that's pretty easy to fix too, right? Land of the free :)

Okay. Do you live (or work) in a town or city? Great! Please register an event on the awesome Ubuntu Loco team portal. Do it right now. Then, on your lunch break, print a flyer. Then, after work, take a walk to your local coffee shop and hang that flyer saying Ubuntu will be there on Saturday. One flyer. You can do it. Be strong.

I'll bet you a chicken pot pie that at least one other person will see that flyer and will be curious enough to show up. That one small act you did today will have introduced some fun into someone's otherwise non-Ubuntu weekend. And, you might just have started an Ubuntu group in your town.

Change begins locally, with you.


For those keeping score, here's the final Jam-o-Meter from the last Global Jam we had (Oneiric Ocelot cycle):

Prague Will Jam. Will You?

Where will you be on Saturday March 3rd 2012? No plans yet? GREAT! How about heading over to Prague?

The Ubuntu Global Jam in Prague is one of those "must attend" events. And this weekend, I had the honour of interviewing the organizer, Vojtěch Trefný of the Ubuntu Czech Republic team.

1) Vojtěch, what does the Ubuntu Global Jam mean to you personally?

It's a good opportunity to meet other people from our community and
to work together. It's much more fun when we do something with Ubuntu together, talk about it and learn from each other. And because I'm also the coordinator of the Czech l10n (localization) team, it's also good to see the number of newly translated strings after the Jam.

2) What is UGJ Praha going to be about?

Our Jams are mostly about translations. We think translating is
the easiest way to help FOSS. All you need is knowledge of
English and working knowledge of the translated system. The best thing is that experienced translators can give you immediate feedback, help correct mistakes etc.

3) What excites you most about Ubuntu?

The community. Ubuntu is a good system and I use it everywhere, but the people around the project and the spirit and passion are the real reasons I love Ubuntu.

4) Did you run UGJ events before?

Yes, we did. We participated in our first Jam in October 2009 and since then, we've met every half year jamming in Prague. Our first Jam took place online (via IRC, we just couldn't find place to meet), but we enjoyed it as well.

5) Do you have any good tips for anyone planning to organise an event?

Yes! Stop talking about organizing Jams and just do it. For our first Jam we didn't even have a place to meet, so we met online and it was awesome too (of course not as good as a physical meeting). If you don't make the first move, you won't have chance to start awesome community sessions full of fun and hard work. Three people with laptops in local library is also a Jam, so just try it.

6) Can you share a couple of photos of a UGJ event in Praha? I'd love to include them in the story.

You can see some photos here: https://picasaweb.google.com/ubuntuczech/GlobalJamBrmlabPodzim11

Thank you Vojtěch for taking time out of your busy schedule to "speak" with me :)

Please join Vojtěch and the awesome Czech team on Saturday. Here's the link to get all the details and join in the fun: http://loco.ubuntu.com/events/ubuntu-cz/1552/detail/

And how about you, dear reader? Do you live in a large city like Prague? Do we have your event on the extremely awesome Ubuntu Loco team portal?

Well you heard Vojtěch. Why not make the first move? ...


For those keeping score and barely able to contain their anxiety over our Jam numbers, the Jam-o-Meter returns tomorrow. Watch out Lexington!

The Jam-o-Meter Returns!

The Ubuntu Global Jam (Precise Pangolin edition) begins in less than one week: Friday March 2nd 2012.

We have Jams organized all over the world. But how many? Let's see what that now infamous Jam-o-Meter has to say:


We're now up to 22 Ubuntu LoCo teams participating in 16 countries. Hmm...

Do you live in a large city? Do we have your event on the awesome Ubuntu Loco Directory?

Today's list of large North American cities that really should have an Ubuntu Global Jam but do not are:

San Francisco
New York City
Los Angeles
Lexington, MA

OUCH! Did you spot that not-so-subliminal hint?

So, you live (or work) in one of these cities. Great! Please register your event on the awesome Ubuntu Loco Directory. It's so easy that it will bring tears to your eyes. It's more fun than unicorns and puppies.

Remember what I said ~6 months ago? "Your event could be the one that changes Ubuntu, and the world." That may seem lofty to some, but I like to think that change begins locally.


For those keeping score, here's the final Jam-o-Meter from the last Global Jam we had (Oneiric Ocelot cycle):

Making Jam Fun. Spreading Jam Everywhere!

This message is going out to every one of you that has never been to an Ubuntu Global Jam. Yes, that's you!

You might have heard that Ubuntu Global Jams are events designed to make Ubuntu better. They are a way to add your help (your brick in the wall) to the world's most important collaborative project.

Sounds a bit like work, doesn't it? Well, what if all you want to do is enjoy meeting other Ubuntu people? Is there a place for you?


Please do me a favour. Please get up from your chair for just a minute. And as you get up, look out the window in the direction of the nearest downtown in your town/city. Take that minute and observe carefully what you see. I'll wait for you here.

++insert 1'00" of charming Rick Astley elevator muzak here++

So, are you back? Great! Now what did you see?

Did you see an Ubuntu group? Did you see a bunch of people gathered to talk about Ubuntu? To share Ubuntu tips and tricks? To meet people that believe that it is important to solve Bug #1 in our lifetime? Did you see Ubuntu people having fun?

No?? Guess what? That's a bug!. Not only that but it's a bug that you can fix! Your very first Ubuntu bug. Cool.

All you need to start an Ubuntu Global Jam in your town or city is a place to meet other Ubuntu users and contributors. Find that place and then find the people to visit it. Do something fun. Don't make work or talk about work. Play with fun software. Talk. Draw. Eat. Drink. Eat Jam! Whatever you do, keep it light and fun.

When you do that, you will have added something very special to the Ubuntu project: the beginnings of a new Ubuntu Community in your community.

Imagine if you can an Ubuntu group in every village, town, and city everywhere in the world. Now, imagine that you helped make that happen.

Please Spread Jam Everywhere. Eat Jam. Tell them the "Ubuntu Buzz Generator" sent you.

Jam. Yum!Jam. Yum!

Music of Ubuntu: Asimbonanga

Recently on Planet Ubuntu, Jono "challenged" us to share the music we associate with Ubuntu. I love a challenge, and Jono's my bud. (I know he'll write an Ubuntu anthem one day!)

So until then Jono, I have several great tunes that come to mind, but I want to share the one song that I think absolutely nails the spirit of what we're doing.


1) This song is difficult to pronounce, but can be mastered with practice, just like Ubuntu. (Hint: oo-boon-too)

2) This song is by a band that hails from South Africa (Johnny Clegg and Savuka, formerly Juluka) and its sound is distinctly African. Ubuntu has similar origins.

3) This song is a song about a struggle for freedom: In this case, Nelson Mandela and the struggle to end apartheid. Ubuntu is a struggle to bring freedom to a domain (computing) that has seen very little of it.

4) This song is inspiring, just like Ubuntu.

5) I have opened dozens of Ubuntu Vancouver celebrations and presentations with my own Ubuntu soundtrack, and this song is the song I play before taking the stage. So for me, when I hear the song, I remember those that were beside me, supporting me. I remember hundreds of people in Vancouver that love, use, and contribute to Ubuntu and celebrate local community together with me, in person.

Ubuntu friends, our struggle might also seem insurmountable at times (hate, negativity, unfair competition), but remember that a great vision (Mark Shuttleworth) and hard work (Ubuntu Contributor Community) trumps even the most evil construct. (Evil? Think predatory monopoly. Think indifferent. Think fruit.)

Allow me to present ASIMBONANGA.

Click to play!Click to play!


Happy Valentines Day Ubuntu <3


This post proudly shared on Diaspora*, the social network that speaks freedom.

Following Good Blogging Advice

Yesterday on Planet Ubuntu, Jono blogged about how to make your blog more compelling, professional and popular. Great advice!

One of Jono's tips that caught my eye, and admittedly one that I personally underutilize was:

     "Use social media – post a link to your post on 
      Twitter, Google+, Facebook and other social media accounts."

Social media can extend the reach of your blog, taking it to new places and new audiences. However, despite my love of the first (bolded) part of that advice, I just could not stomach the second part. To me, it would be the equivalent of wearing a fur coat to a PETA rally. So, in the spirit of forking, here's my version:

     "Use social media – post a link to your post on 
      Twitter, Google+, Facebook and other  social media accounts 
      that respect freedom, do not censor, and do not sell or 
      otherwise disclose your social graph."

So, I reposted my Planet Ubuntu post from yesterday to Diaspora*. To my delight, I received some additional traffic and insight from a new reader:


Do you use Diaspora* to further the reach of your blog? Do you want to communicate to people who love and understand freedom?

#Ubuntu is now followed by 1737 people on Diaspora*. And I'll bet you a beer that we can easily multiply that by a factor of 1000.

I hope you'll join the discussion on Diaspora* by participating and contributing your great Ubuntu blog posts there.

Forget walled gardens. Freedom awaits :)

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