[RFC] ShipIt CD-RW

ben darby ben at cvrse.com
Wed Apr 18 08:51:47 UTC 2007

* John Richard Moser wrote:
> I've been thinking on ShipIt CDs and the problems with getting them out
> taking so long.  I could give a long-winded essay; but I'm dealing with
> people here, so I'll give brief points and you can comment.
> Summary of the problem:
>   o ShipIt CDs take too long to get out to users, often times weeks or
>     months.
>   o Ubuntu release cycle spans 6 months; ShipIt CDs become a waste of
>     material after this point for many users.
> Solutions that fail:
>   o ShipIt ships faster:  More resources, more expense, more stress on
>     Canonical.
>   o ShipIt preorders:  We still have to wait until release before we can
>     expect anyone to start pressing anything.  The same back-ups arise.
>   o Longer release cycles:  Too drastic, and marketing fluff.
> The proposed solution:
>   I propose we ship Ubuntu ShipIt CDs on CD-RWs.  This would allow users
>   to order ShipIt CDs during the Alpha/Beta cycles and up-burn as
>   necessary.  Further, ShipIt CDs could be dual-branded for reuse in the
>   next release cycle.
>   o ShipIt can ship CD-RWs during the development cycle.  These CD-RWs
>     would use special ShipIt-RW art, indicating the disc utilizes CD-RW
>     storage to house the Ubuntu Operating System.
>   o ShipIt-RW artwork would contain multiple brands, each with a check
>     box by it.  The next three releases would appear; so during the
>     Feisty development cycle, brands for 7.04, 7.10, and 8.04 would
>     appear.  Alternately, in case of flexible releases (as with Dapper),
>     the branding "Yv1" and "Yv2" (Y for Year) could replace exact
>     version numbers; so Feisty would be 7v1 and Feisty+1 would be 7v2.
>   o ShipIt-RW artwork would display multiple release levels, including
>    "Alpha" and "Beta" paired with 1-5.  Again, these sit next to check
>    boxes.
>   o A write-in box would allow for ShipIt-RW labeling as "Slipstreamed"
>     (rebuilt with all patches) or a future version.
>   o ShipIt-RW packs could ship with an erasable marker; eraser fluid
>    (sponge-bottle of water); and eraser (cloth).  This would facilitate
>    rebranding by reburning a different release.
>   o Canonical could ship ShipIt-RW CDs blank, unlabeled, allowing
>     recipients to burn as needed.
> I believe the above proposals leave enough room for discussion to come
> to a useful and unique solution.  I will leave this open for discussion,
> as I am curious to see if anyone else would enjoy dev-cycle rewritable
> CDs from ShipIt, and if anyone has a nice solution on how to do this right.

i think your missing the point of shipit, in general the people ordering
these discs are the ones who are unable to download a 700meg iso over
the internet, or are just looking to try ubuntu for the first time,
being given the disc from a friend or expo. i cant really see any point
in canonical sending out blank dvdrws around the world when anyone can
pick one up from the local milkbar for less than a dollar, as they're
still going to have to download the images from the internet and anyone
low on bandwith is not likely to download multiple full prerelease
iso's. there are many authorised merchants [1] to buy cd's from for only a
few dollars if you'd like it faster.

[1] - http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/purchase#distributor

ben darby
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