ubuntu planet – pleia2's blog http://princessleia.com/journal Elizabeth Krumbach Joseph's public journal about Linux, sysadmining, beer, travel, pink gadgets and her life in the city where little cable cars climb halfway to the stars. Tue, 23 Aug 2016 21:01:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.6 Ubuntu in Philadelphia http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/08/ubuntu-in-philadelphia/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/08/ubuntu-in-philadelphia/#respond Mon, 22 Aug 2016 19:53:05 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11853 Last week I traveled to Philadelphia to spend some time with friends and speak at FOSSCON. While I was there, I noticed a Philadelphia area Linux Users Group (PLUG) meeting would land during that week and decided to propose a talk on Ubuntu 16.04.

But first I happened to be out getting my nails done with a friend on Sunday before my talk. Since I was there, I decided to Ubuntu theme things up again. Drawing freehand, the manicurist gave me some lovely Ubuntu logos.

Girly nails aside, that’s how I ended up at The ATS Group on Monday evening for a PLUG West meeting. They had a very nice welcome sign for the group. Danita and I arrived shortly after 7PM for the Q&A portion of the meeting. This pre-presentation time gave me the opportunity to pass around my BQ Aquaris M10 tablet running Ubuntu. After the first unceremonious pass, I sent it around a second time with more of an introduction, and the Bluetooth keyboard and mouse combo so people could see convergence in action by switching between the tablet and desktop view. Unlike my previous presentations, I was traveling so I didn’t have my bag of laptops and extra tablet, so that was the extent of the demos.

The meeting was very well attended and the talk went well. It was nice to have folks chiming in on a few of the topics (like the transition to systemd) and there were good questions. I also was able to give away a copy of our The Official Ubuntu Book, 9th Edition to an attendee who was new to Ubuntu.

Keith C. Perry shared a video of the talk on G+ here. Slides are similar to past talks, but I added a couple since I was presenting on a Xubuntu system (rather than Ubuntu) and didn’t have pure Ubuntu demos available: slides (7.6M PDF, lots of screenshots).

After the meeting we all had an enjoyable time at The Office, which I hadn’t been to since moving away from Philadelphia almost seven years ago.

Thanks again to everyone who came out, it was nice to meet a few new folks and catch up with a bunch of people I haven’t seen in several years.

Saturday was FOSSCON! The Ubuntu Pennsylvania LoCo team showed up to have a booth, staffed by long time LoCo member Randy Gold.

They had Ubuntu demos, giveaways from the Ubuntu conference pack (lanyards, USB sticks, pins) and I dropped off a copy of the Ubuntu book for people to browse, along with some discount coupons for folks who wanted to buy it. My Ubuntu tablet also spent time at the table so people could play around with that.


Thanks to Randy for the booth photo!

At the conference closing, we had three Ubuntu books to raffle off! They seemed to go to people who appreciated them and since both José and I attended the conference, the raffle winners had 2/3 of the authors there to sign the books.


My co-author, José Antonio Rey, signing a copy of our book!
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Ubuntu 16.04 Release Party San Francisco Concluded! http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/08/ubuntu-16-04-release-party-san-francisco-concluded/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/08/ubuntu-16-04-release-party-san-francisco-concluded/#comments Tue, 02 Aug 2016 03:06:49 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11736 On the evening of Thursday, July 28th I hosted the Ubuntu 16.04 Release Party in San Francisco. It was a couple months after release, but nicely lined up with the 16.04.1 release, where folks running 14.04 would finally be prompted to upgrade to 16.04. It also ended up being just a week after the release of the 9th edition of The Official Ubuntu Book, so I was able to give away a couple of copies during the party!

The evening was hosted by OpenDNS, who were incredibly welcoming and gracious hosts. Thanks so much, Jennifer Basalone and crew!

The space was excellent, having power strips set up at a pair of tables near the entrance, a whole area of seating for the presentation and an open floor plan that lent itself to casual chats as well as pulling out laptops to swap tips with each other. An Ubuntu Studio install was even started during the event. We did have the unfortunate snafu of a baseball game just down the street messing up nearby traffic a bit, but hopefully that didn’t discourage too many attendees, as public transit to the venue was still pretty easy.

The venue provided drinks and I was able to order salad and a pile of pizzas to make sure everyone was well fed throughout the event.

Like with my past presentations at LUGs in June and July, I brought along my underpowered Lenovo G575, which I had Ubuntu 16.04 running on and my Dell Mini 9 with Xubuntu 16.04. Plus I had my pair of tablets, Nexus 7 and Aquaris M10 with the hot-off-the-download OTA-12.

The tablets definitely got the most attention at this event, and showing off desktop mode (convergence!) by connecting my Lenovo keyboard+mouse combo to the Aquaris M10 was a lot of fun.

I did my release presentation a final time at this event, this time updated with OTA-12 notes. Slides available: sf_release_party_ubuntu_1604.pdf (6.0M), sf_release_party_ubuntu_1604.odp (5.4M), please feel free to use them as you see fit.

A few more photos from the event here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pleia2/albums/72157671609240786

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The Official Ubuntu Book, 9th Edition released! http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/07/the-official-ubuntu-book-9th-edition-released/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/07/the-official-ubuntu-book-9th-edition-released/#comments Mon, 25 Jul 2016 20:27:34 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11727 Back in 2014 I had the opportunity to lend my expertise to the 8th edition of The Official Ubuntu Book and began my path into authorship. Since then, I’ve completed the first edition of Common OpenStack Deployments, coming out in September. I was thrilled this year when Matthew Helmke invited me back to work on the 9th edition of The Official Ubuntu Book. We also had José Antonio Rey joining us for this edition as a third co-author.

One of the things we focused on with the 8th edition was, knowing that it would have a shelf life of 2 years, future-proofing. With the 9th edition we continued this focus, but also wanted to add a whole new chapter: Ubuntu, Convergence, and Devices of the Future

Taking a snippet from the book’s sample content, the chapter gives a whirlwind tour of where Ubuntu on desktops, servers and devices is going:

Chapter 10: Ubuntu, Convergence, and Devices of the Future 261

The Convergence Vision 262
Unity 263
Ubuntu Devices 264
The Internet of Things and Beyond 268
The Future of the Ubuntu Desktop 272
Summary 273

The biggest challenge with this chapter was the future-proofing. We’re in an exciting point in the world of Ubuntu and how it’s moved far beyond “Linux for Human Beings” on the desktop and into powering servers, tablets, robots and even refrigerators. With the Snappy and Ubuntu Core technologies both powering much of this progress and changing rapidly, we had to be cautious about how in depth we covered this tooling. With the help of Michael Hall, Nathan Haines and Sergio Schvezov I believe we’ve succeeded in presenting a chapter that gives the reader a firm overview of these new technologies, while being general enough to last us until the 10th edition of this book.

Also thanks to Thomas Mashos of the Mythbuntu team and Paul Mellors who also pitched in with this edition. Finally, as with the last edition, it was a pleasure to work with Matthew and José on this book. I hope you enjoy it!

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Ubuntu 16.04 in the SF Bay Area http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/07/ubuntu-16-04-in-the-sf-bay-area/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/07/ubuntu-16-04-in-the-sf-bay-area/#respond Fri, 22 Jul 2016 00:17:12 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11716 Back in June I gave a presentation on the 16.04 release down at FeltonLUG, which I wrote about here.

Making my way closer to home, I continued my tour of Ubuntu 16.04 talks in the San Francisco Bay Area. A couple weeks ago I gave the talk at SVLUG (Silicon Valley Linux Users Group) and on Tuesday I spoke at BALUG (Bay Area Linux Users Group).

I hadn’t been down to an SVLUG meeting in a couple years, so I appreciated the invitation. They have a great space set up for presentations, and the crowd was very friendly. I particularly enjoyed that folks came with a lot of questions, which meant we had an engaging evening and it stretched what is alone a pretty short talk into one that filled the whole presentation time. Slides: svlug_ubuntu_1604.pdf (6.0M), svlug_ubuntu_1604.odp (5.4M)


Presentation, tablets and giveaways at SVLUG

At BALUG this week things were considerably more casual. The venue is a projector-less Chinese restaurant these days and the meetings tend to be on the small side. After family style dinner, attendees gathered around my big laptop running Ubuntu as I walked through my slide deck. It worked better than expected, and the format definitely lent itself to people asking questions and having discussions throughout too. Very similar slides to the ones I had at SVLUG: balug_ubuntu_1604.pdf (6.0M), balug_ubuntu_1604.odp (5.4M)


Setup and giveaways at BALUG

Next week my Ubuntu 16.04 talk adventures culminate in the event I’m most excited about, the San Francisco Ubuntu 16.04 release party at OpenDNS office located at 135 Bluxome St in San Francisco!

The event is on Thursday, July 28th from 6:30 – 8:30PM.

It’s right near the Caltrain station, so where ever you are in the bay it should be easy to get to.

  • Laptops running Ubuntu and Xubuntu 16.04.
  • Tablets running the latest Ubuntu build, including the bq Aquaris M10 that shipped with Ubuntu and demonstrates convergence.
  • Giveaways, including the 9th edition of the Official Ubuntu book (new release!), pens, stickers and more.

I’ll need to plan for food, so I need folks to RSVP. There are a few options for RSVP:

Need more convincing? It’ll be fun! And I’m a volunteer whose systems engineering job is unrelated to the Ubuntu project. In order to continue putting the work into hosting these events, I need the satisfaction of having people come.

Finally, event packs from Canonical are now being shipped out to LoCos! It’s noteworthy that for this release instead of shipping DVDs, which have been in sharp popularity decline over the past couple of years, they are now shipping USB sticks. These are really nice, but the distribution is limited to just 25 USB sticks in the shipment for the team. This is an order of magnitude fewer than we got with DVDs, but they’re also much more expensive.


Event pack from Canonical

Not in the San Francisco Bay Area? If you feel inspired to give an Ubuntu 16.04 presentation, you’re welcome to use my slides, and I’d love to see pictures from your event!

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Ubuntu 16.04 at FeltonLUG and the rest of California http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/07/ubuntu-16-04-at-feltonlug-and-the-rest-of-california/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/07/ubuntu-16-04-at-feltonlug-and-the-rest-of-california/#respond Sat, 02 Jul 2016 00:30:39 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11649 On Saturday, June 25th my husband and I made our way south to Felton, California so I could give a presentation to the Felton Linux Users Group on Ubuntu 16.04.

I brought along my demo systems:

  • Lenovo G575 running Ubuntu 16.04, which I presented from
  • Dell mini9 running Xubuntu 16.04
  • Nexus 7 2013 running Ubuntu OTA-11
  • bq Aquaris M10 running Ubuntu OTA-11

All these were pristine systems so that I didn’t have any data loaded on them or anything. The Nexus 7 took some prep though. I had to swing by #ubuntu-touch on freenode to get some help with re-flashing it after it got stuck on a version from February and wouldn’t upgrade beyond that in the UI. Thanks to popey for being so responsive there and helping me out.

The presentation was pretty straight forward. I walked attendees through screenshots and basic updates of the flavors, and then dove into a variety of changes in the 16.04 release of Ubuntu itself, including disabling of Amazon search by default, replacement of Ubuntu Software Center by GNOME Software, replacement of Upstart with systemd (new since the last LTS release), ability to move the Unity launcher to the bottom of the screen, inclusion of ZFS and the introduction of Ubuntu Snappy.

Slides from my presentation are available for other folks to use as they see fit (but you probably want to introduce yourself, rather than me!): feltonlug_ubuntu_1604.pdf (3.1M), feltonlug_ubuntu_1604.odp (5.4M). If you’d like a smaller version of this slide deck, drop me a message at lyz@ubuntu.com and I’ll send you one without all the flavor screenshots.

After the presentation portion of the event, I answered questions and gave folks the opportunity to play with the laptops and tablets I brought along. About half the meeting was spent causally chatting with attendees about their experiences and plans to debug and flash the Ubuntu image on supported tablets.

Huge thanks to the group for being the welcoming crowd they always are, and Bob Lewis for inviting me down.

I’ll continue my presentation roadshow through July, presenting on Ubuntu 16.04 at the following Bay Area groups and events where I’m also bringing along Ubuntu pens, stickers and other goodies:

Bonus: At the release party in San Francisco I’ll also have copies of the The Official Book, 9th Edition which I’ll be signing and giving away!

Looking forward to these events, it should be a nice adventure around the bay area.

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My Yakkety Yak has arrived! http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/05/my-yakkety-yak-has-arrived/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/05/my-yakkety-yak-has-arrived/#comments Thu, 12 May 2016 01:38:50 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11512 I like toys, but I’m an adult who lives in a small condo, so I need to behave myself when it comes to bringing new friends into our home. I made an agreement with myself to try and limit my stuffed toy purchases to two per year, one for each Ubuntu release.

Even so, I now have quite the collection.

These toys serve the purpose of brightening up our events with some fun, and enjoy the search for a new animal to match Mark Shuttleworth’s latest animal announcement. Truth be told, my tahr is a goat that I found that kind of looks like a tahr. The same goes for my xerus. My pangolin ended up having to be a plastic toy, though awareness about the animal (and conservation effords) has grown since 2012 so I’d likely be able to find one now. The quetzal was the trickiest, I had to admit defeat bought an ornament instead, but I did find and buy some quetzal earrings during our honeymoon in Mexico.

I’ve had fun as well and learned more about animals, which I love anyway. For the salamander I bought a $55 Hellbender Salamander Adoption Kit from the World Wildlife fund, an organization my husband and I now donate to annually. Learning about pangolins led me to visit one in San Diego and become a made me aware of the Save Pangolins organization.

It is now time for a Yakkety Yak! After some indecisiveness, I went with an adorable NICI yak, which I found on Amazon and shipped from Shijiazhuang, China. He arrived today.

Here he is!

…though I did also enjoy the first photo I took, where trusty photobombed us.

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Color an Ubuntu Xenial Xerus http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/04/color-an-ubuntu-xenial-xerus/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/04/color-an-ubuntu-xenial-xerus/#comments Sat, 16 Apr 2016 17:03:28 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11435 Last cycle I reached out to artist and creator of Full Circle Magazine Ronnie Tucker to see if he’d create a coloring page of a werewolf for some upcoming events. He came through and we had a lot of fun with it (blog post here).

With the LTS release coming up, I reached out to him again.

He quickly turned my request around, and now we have a xerus to color!

Xerus coloring page
Click the image or here to download the full size version for printing.

Huge thanks to Ronnie for coming through with this, it’s shared with a CC-SA license, so I encourage people to print and share them at their release events and beyond!

While we’re on the topic of the our African ground squirrel friend, thanks to Tom Macfarlane of the Canonical Design Team I was able to update the Animal SVGs section of the Official Artwork page on the Ubuntu wiki. For those of you who haven’t seen the mascot image, it’s a real treat.

Xerus official mascot

It’s a great accompaniment to your release party. Download the SVG version for printing from the wiki page or directly here.

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Xubuntu 16.04 ISO testing tips http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/03/xubuntu-16-04-iso-testing-tips/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/03/xubuntu-16-04-iso-testing-tips/#comments Sun, 06 Mar 2016 17:54:32 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11367 As we get closer to the 16.04 LTS release, it’s becoming increasingly important for people to be testing the daily ISOs to catch any problems. This past week, we had the landing of GNOME Software to replace the Ubuntu Software Center and this will definitely need folks looking at it and reporting bugs (current ones tracked here: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/gnome-software)

In light of this, I thought I’d quickly share a few of my own tips and stumbling points. My focus is typically on Xubuntu testing, but things I talk about are applicable to Ubuntu too.


ISO testing on a rainy day

1. Downloading the ISO

Downloading an ISO every day, or even once a week can be tedious. Helpfully, the team provides the images via zsync which will only download the differences in the ISO between days, saving you a lot of time and bandwidth. Always use this option when you’re downloading ISOs, you can even use it the first time you download one, as it will notice that none exists.

The zsync URL is right alongside all the others when you choose “Link to the download information” in the ISO tracker:

You then use a terminal to cd into the directory where you want the ISO to be (or where it already is) and copy the zsync line into the terminal and hit enter. It will begin by examining the current ISO and then give you a progress bar for what it needs to download.

2. Putting the image on a USB stick

I have struggled with this for several releases. At first I was using UNetbootin (unetbootin), then usb-creator (usb-creator-gtk). Then I’d switch off between the two per release when one or the other wasn’t behaving properly. What a mess! How can we expect people to test if they can’t even get the ISO on a USB stick with simple instructions?

The other day flocculant, the Xubuntu QA Lead, clued me into using GNOME Disks to put an ISO on a USB stick for testing. You pop in the USB stick, launch gnome-disks (you’ll need to install the gnome-disk-utility package in Xubuntu), select your USB stick in the list on the left and choose the “Restore Disk Image…” option in the top right to select the ISO image you want to use:

I thought about doing a quick screencast of it, but Paul W. Frields over at Fedora Magazine beat me to it by more than a year: How to make a Live USB stick using GNOME Disks

This has worked beautifully with both the Xubuntu and Ubuntu ISOs.

3. Reporting bugs

The ISO tracker, where you report testing results, is easy enough to log into, but a fair number of people quit the testing process when it gets to actually reporting bugs. How do I report bugs? What package do I report them against? What if I do it wrong?

I’ve been doing ISO testing for several years, and have even run multiple events with a focus on ISO testing, and STILL struggle with this.

How did I get over it?

First, I know it’s a really long page, but this will get you familiar with the basics of reporting a bug using the ubuntu-bug tool: Ubuntu ReportingBugs

Often times being familiar with the basic tooling isn’t enough. It’s pretty common to run into a bug that’s manifesting in the desktop environment rather than in a specific application. A wallpaper is gone, a theme looks wrong, you’re struggling to log in. Where do those get submitted? And Is this bad enough for me to classify it as “Critical” in the ISO Tracker? This is when I ask. For Xubuntu I ask in #xubuntu-devel and for Ubuntu I ask in #ubuntu-quality. Note: people don’t hover over their keyboards on IRC, explain what you’re doing, ask your question and be patient.

This isn’t just for bugs, we want to see more people testing and it’s great when new testers come into our IRC channels to share their experiences and where they’re getting stuck. You’re part of our community :)


Simcoe thinks USB sticks are cat toys

Resources

I hope you’ll join us.

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Ubuntu at SCALE14x http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/01/ubuntu-at-scale14x/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/01/ubuntu-at-scale14x/#respond Sat, 30 Jan 2016 23:40:06 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11266 I spent a long weekend in Pasadena from January 21-24th to participate in the 14th Annual Southern California Linux Expo (SCALE14x). As I mentioned previously, a major part of my attendance was focused on the Ubuntu-related activities. Wednesday evening I joined a whole crowd of my Ubuntu friends at a pre-UbuCon meet-and-greet at a wine bar (all ages were welcome) near the venue.

It was at this meet-and-greet where I first got to see several folks I hadn’t seen since the last Ubuntu Developer Summit (UDS) back in Copenhagen in 2012. Others I had seen recently at other open source conferences and still more I was meeting for the first time, amazing contributors to our community who I’d only had the opportunity to get to know online. It was at that event that the excitement and energy I used to get from UDS came rushing back to me. I knew this was going to be a great event.

The official start of this first UbuCon Summit began Thursday morning. I arrived bright and early to say hello to everyone, and finally got to meet Scarlett Clark of the Kubuntu development team. If you aren’t familiar with her blog and are interested in the latest updates to Kubuntu, I highly recommend it. She’s also one of the newly elected members of the Ubuntu Community Council.


Me and Scarlett Clark

After morning introductions, we filed into the ballroom where the keynote and plenaries would take place. It was the biggest ballroom of the conference venue! The SCALE crew really came through with support of this event, it was quite impressive. Plus, the room was quite full for the opening and Mark Shuttleworth’s keynote, particularly when you consider that it was a Thursday morning. Richard Gaskin and Nathan Haines, familiar names to anyone who has been to previous UbuCon events at SCALE, opened the conference with a welcome and details about how the event had grown this year. Logistics and other details were handled now too, and then they quickly went through how the event would work, with a keynote, series of plenaries and then split User and Developer tracks in the afternoon. They concluded by thanking sponsors and various volunteers and Canonical staff who made the UbuCon Summit a reality.


UbuCon Summit introduction by Richard Gaskin and Nathan Haines

The welcome, Mark’s keynote and the morning plenaries are available on YouTube, starting here and continuing here.

Mark’s keynote began by acknowledging the technical and preference diversity in our community, from desktop environments to devices. He then reflected upon his own history in Linux and open source, starting in university when he first installed Linux from a pile of floppies. It’s been an interesting progression to see where things were twenty years ago, and how many of the major tech headlines today are driven by Linux and Ubuntu, from advancements in cloud technology to self-driving cars. He continued by talking about success on a variety of platforms, from the tiny Raspberry Pi 2 to supercomputers and the cloud, Ubuntu has really made it.

With this success story, he leapt into the theme of the rest of his talk: “Great, let’s change.” He dove into the idea that today’s complex, multi-system infrastructure software is “too big for apt-get” as you consider relationships and dependencies between services. Juju is what he called “apt-get for the cloud/cluster” and explained how LXD, the next evolution of LXC running as a daemon, gives developers the ability to run a series of containers to test deployments of some of these complex systems. This means that just like the developers and systems engineers of the 90s and 00s were able to use open source software to deploy demonstrations of standalone software on our laptops, containers allow the students of today to deploy complex systems locally.

He then talked about Snappy, the new software packaging tooling. His premise was that even a six month release cycle is too long as many people are continuously delivering software from sources like GitHub. Many places have a solid foundation of packages we rely upon and then a handful of newer tools that can be packaged quickly in Snappy rather than going through the traditional Debian Packaging route, which is considerably more complicated. It was interesting to listen to this, as a former Debian package maintainer myself I always wanted to believe that we could teach everyone to do software packaging. However, seeing these efforts play out the community work with app developers it became clear between their reluctance and the backlog felt by the App Review Board, it really wasn’t working. Snappy moves us away from PyPI, PPAs and such into an easier, but still packaged and managed, way to handle software on our systems. It’ll be fascinating to see how this goes.


Mark Shuttleworth on Snappy

He concluded by talking about the popular Internet of Things (IoT) and how Ubuntu Core with Snappy is so important here. DJI, “the market leader in easy-to-fly drones and aerial photography systems,” now offers an Ubuntu-driven drone. The Open Source Robotics Institute uses Ubuntu. GE is designing smart kitchen appliances powered by Ubuntu and many (all?) of the self-driving cars known about use Ubuntu somewhere inside them. There was also a business model here, a company that produces the hardware and a minimal features set that comes with it, also sells a more advanced version, and then industry-expert third parties who further build upon it to sell industry-specific software.

After Mark’s talk there were a series of plenaries that took place in the same room.

First up was Sergio Schvezov who followed on Mark’s keynote nicely as he gave a demo of Snapcraft, the tool used to turn software into a .snap package for Ubuntu Core. Next up was Jorge Castro who gave a great talk about the state of Gaming on Ubuntu, which he said was “Not bad.” Having just had this discussion with my sister, the timing was great for me. On the day of his talk, there were 1,516 games on Steam that would natively run on Linux, a nice selection of which are modern games that are new and exciting across multiple platforms today. He acknowledged the pre-made Steam Boxes but also made the case for homebrewed Steam systems with graphics card recommendations, explaining that Intel did fine, AMD is still lagging behind high performance with their open source drivers and giving several models of NVidia cards today that do very well (from low to high quality, and cost: 750Ti, 950, 960, 970, 980, 980Ti). He also passed around a controller that works with Linux to the audience. He concluded by talking about some issues remaining with Linux Gaming, including regressions in drivers that cause degraded performance, the general performance gap when compared to some other gaming systems and the remaining stigma that there are “no games” on Linux, which talks like this are seeking to reverse. Plenaries continued with Didier Roche introducing Ubuntu Make, a project which makes creating a developer platform out of Ubuntu with several SDKs much easier so that developers reduce the bootstrapping time. His blog has a lot of great posts on the tooling. The last talk of the morning was by Scarlett Clark, who gave us a quick update on Kubuntu Development, explaining that the team had recently joined forces with KDE packagers in Debian to more effectively share resources in their work.

It was then time for group photo! Which included my xerus, and where I had a nice chat (and selfie!) with Carla Sella as we settled in for the picture.


Me and Carla Sella

In the afternoon I attended the User track, starting off with Nathan Haines on The Future of Ubuntu. In this talk he talked about what convergence of devices meant for Ubuntu and warded off concerns that the work on the phone was done in isolation and wouldn’t help the traditional (desktop, server) Ubuntu products. With Ubuntu Core and Snappy, he explained, all the work done on phones is being rolled back into progress made on the other systems, and even IoT devices, that will use them in the future. Following Nathan was the Ubuntu Redux talk by Jono Bacon. His talk could largely be divided into two parts: History of Ubuntu and how we got here, and 5 recommendations for the Ubuntu community. He had lots of great stories and photos, including one of a very young Mark, and moved right along to today with Unity 8 and the convergence story. His 5 recommendations were interesting, so I’ll repeat them here:

  1. Focus on core opportunities. Ubuntu can run anywhere, but should it? We have finite resources, focus efforts accordingly.
  2. Rethink what community in Ubuntu is. We didn’t always have Juju charmers and app developers, but they are now a major part of our community. Understand that our community has changed and adjust our vision as to where we can find new contributors.
  3. Get together more in person. The Ubuntu Online Summit works for technical work, but we’ve missed out on the human component. In person interactions are not just a “nice to have” in communities, they’re essential.
  4. Reduce ambiguity. In a trend that would continue in our leadership panel the next day, some folks (including Jono) argue that there is still ambiguity around Intellectual Propoerty and licensing in the Ubuntu community (Mark disagrees).
  5. Understand people who are not us.

Nathan Haines on The Future of Ubuntu

The next presentation was my own, on Building a career with Ubuntu and FOSS where I drew upon examples in my own career and that of others I’ve worked with in the Ubuntu community to share recommendations for folks looking to contribute to Ubuntu and FOSS as a tool to develop skills and tools for their career. Slides here (PDF). David Planella on The Ubuntu phone and the road to convergence followed my talk. He walked audience members through the launch plan for the phone, going through the device launch with BQ for Ubuntu enthusiasts, the second phase for “innovators and early adopters” where they released the Meizu devices in Europe and China and went on to explain how they’re tackling phase three: general customer availability. He talked about the Ubuntu Phone Insiders group of 30 early access individuals who came from a diverse crowd to provide early feedback and share details (via blog posts, social media) to others. He then gave a tour of the phones themselves, including how scopes (“like mini search engines on your phone”) change how people interact with their device. He concluded with a note about the availability of the SDK for phones available at developer.ubuntu.com, and that they’re working to make it easy for developers to upload and distribute their applications.

Video from the User track can be found here. The Developer track was also happening, video for that can be found here. If you’re scanning through these to find a specific talk, note that each is 1 hour long.

Presentations for the first day concluded with a Q&A with Richard Gaskin and Nathan Haines back in the main ballroom. Then it was off to the Thursday evening drinks and appetizers at Porto Alegre Churrascaria! Once again, a great opportunity to catch up with friends old and new in the community. It was great running into Amber Graner and getting to talk about our respective paid roles these days, and even touched upon key things we worked on in the Ubuntu community that helped us get there.

The UbuCon Summit activities continued after a SCALE keynote with an Ubuntu Leadership panel which I participated in along with Oliver Ries, David Planella, Daniel Holbach, Michael Hall, Nathan Haines and José Antonio Rey with Jono Bacon as a moderator. Jono had prepared a great set of questions, exploring the strengths and weaknesses in our community, things we’re excited about and eager to work on and more. We also took questions from the audience. Video for this panel and the plenaries that followed, which I had to miss in order to give a talk elsewhere, are available here. The link takes you to 1hr 50min in, where the Leadership panel begins.

The afternoon took us off into unconference mode, which allowed us to direct our own conference setup. Due to aforementioned talk I was giving elsewhere, I wasn’t able to participate in scheduling, but I did attend a couple sessions in the afternoon. First was proposed by Brendan Perrine where we talked about strategies for keeping the Ubuntu documentation up to date, and also talked about the status of the Community Help wiki, which has been locked down due to spam for nearly a month(!). I then joined cm-t arudy to chat about an idea the French team is floating around to have people quickly share stories and photos about Ubuntu in some kind of community forum. The conversation was a bit tool-heavy, but everyone was also conscious of how it would need to be moderated. I hope I see something come of this, it sounds like a great project.

With the UbuCon Summit coming to a close, the booth was the next great task for the team. I couldn’t make time to participate this year, but the booth featured lots of great goodies and a fleet of contributors working the booth who were doing a fantastic job of talking to people as the crowds continued to flow through each day.

Huge thanks to everyone who spent months preparing for the UbuCon Summit and booth on the SCALE14x expo hall. It was a really amazing event that I was proud to be a part of. I’m already looking forward to the next one!

Finally, I took responsibility for the @ubuntu_us_ca Twitter account throughout the weekend. It was the first time I’ve done such a comprehensive live-tweeting of an event from a team/project account. I recommend a browse through the tweets if you’re interested in hearing more from other great people live-tweeting the event. It was a lot of fun, but also surprisingly exhausting!

More photos from my time at SCALE14x (including lots of Ubuntu ones!) here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pleia2/albums/72157663821501532

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Color me Ubuntu at UbuCon Summit & SCALE14x http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/01/color-me-ubuntu-at-ubucon-summit-scale14x/ http://princessleia.com/journal/2016/01/color-me-ubuntu-at-ubucon-summit-scale14x/#respond Sun, 17 Jan 2016 18:32:36 +0000 http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=11227 This week I’ll be flying down to Pasadena, California to attend the first UbuCon Summit, which is taking place at the the Fourteenth Annual Southern California Linux Expo (SCALE14x). The UbuCon Summit was the brain child of meetings we had over the summer that expressed concern over the lack of in person collaboration and connection in the Ubuntu community since the last Ubuntu Developer Summit back in 2012. Instead of creating a whole new event, we looked at the community-run UbuCon events around the world and worked with the organizers of the one for SCALE14x to bring in funding and planning help from Canonical, travel assistance to project members and speakers to provide a full two days of conference and unconference event content.

UbuCon Summit

As an attendee of and speaker at these SCALE UbuCons for several years, I’m proud to see the work that Richard Gaskin and Nathan Haines has put into this event over the years turn into something bigger and more broadly supported. The event will feature two tracks on Thursday, one for Users and one for Developers. Friday will begin with a panel and then lead into an unconference all afternoon with attendee-driven content (don’t worry if you’ve never done an unconference before, a full introduction after the panel will be provided on to how to participate).

As we lead up to this the UbuCon Summit (you can still register here, it’s free!) on Thursday and Friday, I keep learning that more people from the Ubuntu community will be attending, several of whom I haven’t seen since that last Developer Summit in 2012. Mark Shuttleworth will be coming in to give a keynote for the event, along with various other speakers. On Thursday at 3PM, I’ll be giving a talk on Building a Career with Ubuntu and FOSS in the User track, and on Friday I’ll be one of several panelists participating in an Ubuntu Leadership Panel at 10:30AM, following the morning SCALE keynote by Cory Doctorow. Check out the full UbuCon schedule here: http://ubucon.org/en/events/ubucon-summit-us/schedule/

Over the past few months I’ve been able to hop on some of the weekly UbuCon Summit planning calls to provide feedback from folks preparing to participate and attend. During one of our calls, Abi Birrell of Canonical held up an origami werewolf that she’d be sending along instructions to make. Turns out, back in October the design team held a competition that included origami instructions and gave an award for creating an origami werewolf. I joked that I didn’t listen to the rest of the call after seeing the origami werewolf, I had already gone into planning mode!

With instructions in hand, I hosted an Ubuntu Hour in San Francisco last week where I brought along the instructions. I figured I’d use the Ubuntu Hour as a testing ground for UbuCon and SCALE14x. Good news: We had a lot of fun, it broke the ice with new attendees and we laughed a lot. Bad news: We’re not very good at origami. There were no completed animals at the end of the Ubuntu Hour!

Origami werewolf attempt
The xerus helps at werewolf origami

At 40 steps to create the werewolf, one hour and a crowd inexperienced with origami, it was probably not the best activity if we wanted animals at the end, but it did give me a set of expectations. The success of how fun it was to try it (and even fail) did get me thinking though, what other creative things could we do at Ubuntu events? Then I read an article about adult coloring books. That’s it! I shot an email off to Ronnie Tucker, to see if he could come up with a coloring page. Most people in the Ubuntu community know Ronnie as the creator of Full Circle Magazine: the independent magazine for the Ubuntu Linux community, but he’s also a talented artist whose skills were a perfect matched for this task. Lucky for me, it was a stay-home snowy day in Glasgow yesterday and within a couple hours he had a werewolf draft to me. By this morning he had a final version ready for printing in my inbox.

Werewolf coloring page

You can download the creative commons licensed original here to print your own. I have printed off several (and ordered some packets of crayons) to bring along to the UbuCon Summit and Ubuntu booth in the SCALE14x expo hall. I’m also bringing along a bunch of origami paper, so people can try their hand at the werewolf… and unicorn too.

Finally, lest we forget that my actual paid job is a systems administrator on the OpenStack Infrastructure team, I’m also doing a talk at DevOpsDayLA on Open Source tools for distributed systems administration. If you think I geek out about Ubuntu and coloring werewolves, you should see how I act when I’m talking about the awesome systems work I get to do at my day job.

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