[ubuntu-uk] Community distro ?

Robin Menneer robinmenneer at gmail.com
Fri Mar 23 11:21:16 GMT 2007

On 3/23/07, Mark Shuttleworth <mark at ubuntu.com> wrote:
>    Michael Wood wrote:
> Two things have really touched a nerve with me recently and I would like
> to open a discussion.
> Firstly:
> [1]https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Artwork#head-8c391b3699f3571c2aedfa7cb78adb4623206933
> "Feisty artwork will be designed by kwwii -- of Kubuntu Edgy and KDE
> Oxygen Icon fame. He will be working closely with sabdfl in the design.
> Do not expect community involvement in defining this portion."
> This seems to contradict entirely the description of ubuntu "Ubuntu is a
> community developed, linux-based operating system ...." - Ubuntu.com .
>    We've struggled to get a cohesive community-directed art strategy.
>    Despite bringing community art contributors to our developer summits,
>    funding part-time work by community artists, and having a completely
>    open process of contribution, we have not been able to produce a
>    unified theme through a community lead process.
>    We found that our approach was resulting in an environment where new
>    artists would show up and expect to be able to lead, from scratch, a
>    completely new theme that was to their taste. There was no clear
>    community lead, but instead multiple fragmented efforts.
>    Based on a deep review of our approach, we came to the conclusion that
>    it's extremely difficult to get a "core theme" that is produced by
>    multiple volunteer contributors where there is no definitive lead. By
>    core theme I mean wallpaper, login, splash and boot splash.
>    So, for Feisty, we are saying that there are two ways the community
>    can contribute:
>     1. Develop complete themes, which we can evaluate, and if a theme
>    emerges which is clean, consistent, complete, and of high quality then
>    it can be included directly in Ubuntu, but not as the default. Such a
>    theme could become the default in a future release if it wins
>    widespread praise in the community. So far, I have not seen a theme
>    emerge which meets these criteria.
>     2. Contribute to the fleshing out of a theme produced by a single,
>    mandated designer. That designer, in this cycle, is Kwii. Folks who
>    want to flesh out the default theme need to follow Kwii's lead.
> So far the Art work for Feisty has been rather doggy in my opinoin and I
> don't hold a huge amount of hope for it getting better. Not saying that
> Kwwii isn't a good artist but I don't see his art suiting the GNOME
> Desktop. It may turn out to be excellent but the discussion, ideas and
> contribution which is provided by having community involvement is going
> to be completely lost.
>    We looked everywhere for artists, and in the end hired Kwii because we
>    thought he was the best available.
> Secondly, why, with all the information i've been able to squeeze, won't
> ubuntu/canonical consider sponsoring GUADEC (GNOME User And Developer
> European Conference) but  were willing to be Gold Sponsor of the last
> aKadamy  ? (KDE's Conference) especially considering that GNOME is the
> desktop that Ubuntu and Edubuntu uses.
>    Consider the total contribution and support we provide, in terms of
>    full time salaries, bugs, patches, conference sponsorships, we felt
>    that we already make a substantial contribution to GNOME and wanted to
>    balance that with a sponsorship of KDE.
> These two issues I have seem to be linked by  my feeling that ubuntu is
> an organisation who's community only has a pseudo influence over
> decisions that really matter. It would be in the ubuntu communities
> interest to be a sponsor of GUADEC and to have community involved art
> work.
>    In Ubuntu, actions matter. If you really want to make an art
>    contribution, it will be welcomed BUT it will need to be of world
>    class standard and will need to fit in with the work being done across
>    the whole project. I'm not sympathetic to someone upset that their
>    single contribution does not make it in when that contribution is not
>    aligned with the work that is already being done. We can't achieve
>    success if we splinter and try to take a million different artistic
>    lines. That's a tough position, but I think it's a necessary one.
>    Mark
> --
> ubuntu-uk at lists.ubuntu.com
> https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-uk
> https://wiki.kubuntu.org/UKTeam/
As a newbe, albeit aged 75 and had one of the first Commodore Pets,
all I want from Ubuntu is a good simple easy default package (giving
me access to open source software) and would be happy to have artistic
options to tempt me to other things, but only as options from the
default, and they should be invisible from the default.  This would
not be splintering - life for Ubuntu is difficult enough already, and
the default message must be kept simple.  Separate packages with just
a link might meet the need, but not to be financed.  If they are that
good they will find acceptors.

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