How to Win the War

Ubuntu Evangelists! Do we want to win? It's time.

A simple yet powerful (marketing) message appears to be resonating in the circles that I travel in. I'm writing today to encourage you to adopt it and then to report back your success(es).

Ubuntu is not just software.Ubuntu is not just software.

It's much more. It's a new way of thinking about how technology fits in our lives. It provides the opportunity for everyone to engage in its production. It respects us. It doesn't deride us and call us "users." In short, it's more human.

I don't think we'll ever win the "war" by trying to make the prettiest, fastest, or featury-est phone/tablet/computer/TV/wristwatch out there (though that certainly helps get us into the game and makes others scramble). We shall win by embracing a philosophy that puts people first and by publicly declaring that fact with both words and actions.

Now, name one technology company (proprietary or not) that can beat us at that game. ;)


Yes it is true that Ubuntu management seems to have some over riding agenda not driven by users. Great article on Ubuntu, I appreciate the endeavor.

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Ubuntu management seems to have some over riding agenda not driven by users. I find Meerkat and Linux Mint 14 (based on Quantal) a whole lot faster and easier to use than "Unity". So I have choices.

I do run "Unity" because I've been running development Ubuntu +1 since Dapper Drake. Unity to me anyway seems to be over burdened with "eye candy".

Now other users must be having the same experience which is the reason that Ubuntu derivatives like Mint may actually have more users than Unity, if there's any way to tell.

Now I do put up with tablet type operating systems like Android on my tablets (7" and 10")
1. Android whole lot faster with less keystrokes on hardware that has slower processors and less memory. In particular connects to my wireless hidden network instantly instead of manual systems settings every time.
2. Android with my level of expertise (and I mean little) can't do a lot of simple things (?) like update, remove stuff I don't want, etc.

So I use Meerkat when I want to do something important like banking, Unity to see what's going on and report bugs, and Mint just for contrast.


Thank you for your thoughtful comments. I don't share some of your opinions but I do value them.

"Ubuntu management seems to have some over riding agenda not driven by users."

I think you mean Canonical management? (Ubuntu is not a company.) I'm curious what you think this agenda is. My experience with Canonical employees and management is that they have a genuine interest in bringing freedom to the widest possible audience.


> We shall win by embracing a philosophy that puts people first
> and by publicly declaring that fact with both words and actions.

1. Putting stuff in the cloud and not enabling normal people to build there own cloud at home (Ubuntu One) - is the opposite thing Ubuntu says it's doing. I love the cloud, as long as I control it. Moving everything to the cloud means to give away your data and depend on others to give access to your own stuff.

2. Building the same hardware products as the competitors doesn't mean to be different. As of today most hardware is constructed under inhumanity conditions - we all know it. Having an Ubuntu TV build by slaves in China means to have another slave build OS. Software is not all it take to be really different - people first.


On #1, there are alternatives to U1, some of which can be self-hosted. Not everyone has the know-how to do that though. Until other options require zero-know-how and zero-admin, Ubuntu will need a cloud service that is friendly for all humans, regardless of experience level, and that is Ubuntu One.

On #2, a discussion has begun on the Ubuntu Phone mailing list about using "fair trade" hardware. I think it's a good idea and one that you could help with.


Good point! :D I copied & pasted for Ubuntu España:




I am not sure if that's just the American approach, but at least here in Switzerland, we don't want to go to war. We want to live together in a peaceful manner, share and benefit from each other.

That's one reason why I am e.g. a cross-distro contributor. Could you imagine that, Ross? Not an evangelist for a 'religion' but helping out where help is needed.

I have lead the LoCo here for quite a long time, organized a lot of large events for Ubuntu, but also packaged for Fedora and did Artwork for openSUSE and CentOS. And I loved it.

So please, stop calling ppl for war. Try to see the benefits of the open source ecosystem and even of the large amount of popular linux distributions. For me, everyone who is using Free Software is a win. This is not limited to Ubuntu.


I'll counter with: An army divided is easily defeated.

I'm not American, and there's nothing wrong with winning. A win for Ubuntu is a win for everyone that cares about software that gives freedom to people :)

Thanks for your comments.


As mentioned before, this is not war. So there is no army at all. And there is nothing to win. At least you cannot force freedom with 'guns'.

And Diversity is one of the biggest strength of free software and open source.

Instead of fighting I would suggest to benefit from each other in areas where it makes sense.


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