[ubuntu-art] Theme Teams. Moving Forward. Making Stuff!

Who mailforwho at googlemail.com
Sat Jan 5 11:23:08 GMT 2008


On my schedule for this (potential) process, today was the day to
decide whether or not we wanted to do this. Very few people have
answered... Please answer.

As it stands, with one suggested theme and no leader for it, we can't
go ahead. There is just no point. Is there any support for this idea,
or are people only here because they want to design the default theme
(serious question, not an attack! ...please answer)

In summary, here is why I think it is a good idea to do this
* If you want your design to be available to Ubuntu users, this is the
only certain way to do it
* In the past, this team has had most success developing community
themes (my opinion, but see below)
* If we want to be taken more seriously as a team in the future,
getting good stuff done well without offiicial hand-holding is
* Developing these themes is fun, seeing people using your theme is great

But if we don't get people able to run them/do design we can't go
forward. It is only sensible for me to drive a process like this  a
certain amount (i.e the leaders need to want to do it!, and do does
the team)

It occurs to me that if we can't even make a complete theme of ANY
style to a good standard, we shouldn't expect to be taken seriously
when we ask to design the default theme!

Happy answering,


On Jan 3, 2008 9:59 AM, Frank Schoep <frank at ffnn.nl> wrote:
> On Jan 3, 2008, at 9:42 AM, Mikkel Kamstrup Erlandsen wrote:
> > To all the new people around here - please pay attention to Who, he
> > has been around here for a good while and knows the drill. …
> Absolutely – there are a few people on this list who've been around
> for quite some time. I think this list is very fortunate to still
> have experienced people like Who and Troy around, but it's also good
> to see a lot of new enthusiastic people sharing their vision.
> > …
> > We came close to the real deal once, was it Dapper?, where we got a
> > few community themes, bundled, but not enabled, by default.
> I think you are referring to Edgy, as the Theme Teams were introduced
> in that release. Eventually three themes ended up in universe, being
> Blubuntu (Who / PingunZ), Peace (Chuck Huber) and Tropic (Viper550).
> While varying in quality and polish, the mere fact they were included
> was a sign that independent small community groups could work towards
> their own vision *and* meet the hard deadline constraints that were
> set for them.
> > This happened solely because of two things:
> >  * A few people stood up and took responsibility for creating themes
> Indeed. There was a deadline for Theme Team applications a few weeks
> into the release cycle so that the theme leaders needed to be
> involved from the start up through a few weeks before release. For
> Edgy, four leaders stepped up with a serious proposal.
> During the development period, we regularly discussed progress and
> problems and where possible I tried to help out either myself or by
> getting the right people in touch with each other.
> >  * Daniel Holbach saved our asses with a lot of packaging work we
> > really should have done our selves
> Daniel has historically helped out with a lot of packaging work,
> indeed. For the Edgy Theme Teams, we made sure he only had one final
> version to package per theme with room before the deadline, so they
> wouldn't burden him much.
> > I think it would be very valuable to have a "History Page" on the wiki
> > outlining the success and Failures of the art team. That would
> > probably help to make it clear how we are doomed to repeat history
> > unless people step up an take responsibility.
> While I can't say much about Feisty, Gutsy or Hardy-in-progress, I
> could tell you about Edgy. As far as I know, Edgy was the first (and
> last?) release to actively try and use community input as a viable
> source for distribution artwork.
> Postmortem I did an interview with Linux.com on the Edgy cycle, and
> there's some half-decent comments from Slashdot, too:
> http://www.linux.com/feature/58477
> http://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/11/14/2241255
> ('Stroep' [sic])
> It seems that all the history we built on the Wiki has been shoveled
> elsewhere or been dumped in a landfill altogether, but if you can
> find it, you might be able to reconstruct a decent timeline along
> with the mailing list.
> It was pretty high traffic during those days (July - October 2006)
> and the ML / Wiki combination seemed to work somewhat satisfactory.
> All in all, Edgy was edgy to me – as you can read in the interview
> the idea was to try something new, community artwork by default, and
> since there were no trodden roads available I did my best to get and
> keep things rolling in an enjoyable fashion.
> I think it worked out pretty well in terms of community involvement,
> enthusiasm, commitment, process structure and raw output. Slightly
> missing was the desired art *direction* but somehow I don't think
> that problem's been resolved ever since, no flame or offense intended.
> If you'd ask me now, sure I'd do things different based on the Edgy
> experience and the knowledge I've accumulated since then, but I think
> the Edgy cycle already showed a lot of potential for the future
> although it never got tapped into afterwards.
> Tell me if I'm wearing rose-colored glasses, thanks for reading.
> Sincerely,
> Frank
> --
> ubuntu-art mailing list
> ubuntu-art at lists.ubuntu.com
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