It's summer time, and that can mean but one thing in Vancouver Canada: street festivals! As Ubuntu Vancouver travels from festival to festival this summer we will talk to thousands of people. Over 90% of them have never heard of Ubuntu. I consider this to be Bug #1 in my city (and maybe even yours). We aim to fix that, starting at home.
So, what do you tell someone about Ubuntu when all you have is 10 seconds or less of their scarce attention? What is the most startling, compelling, truthful, and interesting way to complete this sentence?
"Ubuntu is ______________________ ."
The goal is to make them want to become part of Ubuntu's diverse and lively community.
We have some ideas, but we'd love to hear yours and tap the wisdom of crowds. Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Google is unhelpful in this regard. Try googling "Ubuntu is" and see what I mean.
Last Friday evening, Vancouver (the city in Canada that really gets Ubuntu) threw a party in celebration of Ubuntu and Unity. We call our parties "U-Party" to appeal to everyone(1), not just Ubuntu users.
Over the course of the next few days I will be sharing some of the highlights (at least the ones that I'm allowed to share). I will also share some of the ideas that helped make this party special.
Here's a start. This was the party logo we projected for the world to see! The logo was animated to spin during the party, which actually was an even more interesting thing after an Ubuntini or two :) I am told that the logo looks like this... http://ubuntuone.com/p/10iV/
(1) Remember, 99% of the world uses other OS'es (that don't respect freedom), and we want to bring fun into their lives too! We are all human.
Ubuntu Community Week is your chance to learn about how Ubuntu communities and LoCo teams work. It's also your chance to showcase the great work your Ubuntu group is doing to help people find Ubuntu, to grow your community, and to make events even more awesome!
We have a few slots lefts for presenters, but not many! So, if you have a good Ubuntu story to tell please head on over to the UCW wiki page and nominate yourself to spread your wisdom.
The world needs to hear you!
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...
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?
1. The original series title includes the "L" word. I've dropped it for the sake of amplifying the signal.
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!
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
We are going to launch something soon :)
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.
This article is directed mainly at journalists, who make the same mistakes every time when reporting on Ubuntu. Maybe this release will be different? One can dream...
"It's (nearly) here! Have you been trying Ubuntu 11.04?"
That was a trick question. You can't actually try released software until it is released. With every release of Ubuntu a metamorphosis occurs. An animal becomes a number. That's right! We don't refer to Ubuntu 11.04 as a "Natty Narwhal" after today. That is, unless you insist on running a pre-release version. Please get ready to call Ubuntu what it is: Ubuntu 11.04.
But, "It's the newest version of 'Ubuntu Linux.'"
Hmm. That "L" word again. Really, do you really think that people care which kernel powers their OS? Is it a useful construct to the mainstream computer user? Which kernel powers Windows? Which kernel powers Mac OSX? Which kernel powers Debian? (Aha! That too was a trick question.) The phrase "Ubuntu Linux" is a relic from about 5 years ago. It's time to embrace the new decade.
With that off my chest, here's the excellent and official press release from Canonical regarding Ubuntu 11.04. I hope you'll give it a read! http://www.canonical.com/content/ubuntu-transforms-your-pc-experience
Bonus points: If you're using Firefox, hit CTRL-F and search the above page for the words "Linux", "Natty", and "Narwhal". Go ahead, it's fun!
Joe Liau (Ubuntu Vancouver's Master Presenter) created a fun Ubuntu video complete with clever soundtrack. We premiered it in Vancouver BC last week.
Ubuntu Provides All My Favourite Things
(Sung to the tune of "A Few of My Favourite Things")
multi chat clients and music production
gimping my photos mosaic construction
audio software for voice recordings
these are a few of my favourite things
treats on a tuesday and them-ed occasions
cups of ubuntu and fun celebrations
community gifts that everyone brings
these are a few of my favourite things
redmond prices :(
fruit devices :(
when these make me sad
ubuntu provides all my favourite things
so then i don't feel so bad.
Thank you Joe for reminding us all that "Ubuntu is not just software". You made my day.
(Oh, and yes those are real Ubuntini's in the photo!)