Ubuntu 12.04 Update Development 18

Development Update

42 days until Ubuntu 12.04, the sixteenth Ubuntu release and fourth LTS will be released. This makes six weeks in which the following things are going to happen: one week until Beta 2 Freeze and docs will be frozen, two weeks until Beta 2 gets out, three weeks until the kernel is frozen, four weeks until we hit Final Freeze and it will be hard to squeeze fixes in.

You can probably imagine what this means: the time is now. Never was a better time to fix bugs and make millions of Ubuntu users happy.

Letting developers speak for themselves

Some interesting bits which were discussed last week.


LibreOffice hackfest
Björn Michaelsen let us know that there will be a local even in Hamburg, Germany which will be all about hacking on LibreOffice. If you are in the city on the 14th and 15th April 2012, make sure you turn up!

Ubuntu Developer Hangouts
Daniel Holbach blogged about his experience with Google+ Hangouts where people interested in Ubuntu Development could turn up, ask questions and get involved. He posted more dates for this week.

Ubuntu Release Parties
If you are planning a release party, make sure you note it down on its LoCo Team Portal page: a LTS release wants to be properly celebrated!

Things which need to get done

If you want to get involved in packaging and bug fixing, there’s still a lot of bugs that need to get fixed:

  • Also did John Lea from the Ubuntu Design team talk to us and mentioned that there are bugs up for grabs, where the design has been decided on and the implementation might need YOUR help. If you want to help improve Ubuntu’s UI, have a look at these!

First timers!

Two new contributors got their fix into Ubuntu: Thibaud Ecarot fixed a bug in icedtea and Tao Zhu synced a new version of highlight to Ubuntu.

We have an interesting week coming up: Björn Michaelsen is applying for upload rights for LibreOffice and Adam Gandelman applies for MOTU and Ubuntu Server upload rights! Also Kilian Krause is going to apply for MOTU membership. Good luck Adam, Björn and Kilian!

Also this week Marcin Juszkiewicz joined the MOTU team! Congratulations!

Spotlight: Putting the Ubuntu Development process to the test

Many engineering teams in the Ubuntu world have made extensive use of User Testing in the last years. This is an important reality check for everyone defining the experience of users. Do my assumptions still hold true? What do users expect? Are there use-cases we never considered? Which steps confuse our users?

The Ubuntu developers, so everyone who builds Ubuntu, integrates pieces to work nicely with each other, maintains packages and produces the distribution we all love, everyone is interested in this kind of feedback.

User testing of the Ubuntu Development process has, if it happened, always been ad-hoc and isolated. This is the reason why we want to look into this again and figure out which parts of the work-flows need to be improved.

Have you thought about contributing to Ubuntu Development before? Did you like the thought of helping improve the distribution millions of users love? If you did, you might be interested in this User Testing initiative. You will only have to read our documentation and send your feedback toubuntudev at holba dot ch. We in turn will make sure your feedback is put up for discussion and fixed eventually. Also will we will help you on your way if you should get stuck.

This initiative is not to be confused with mentoring. We are not going to do your homework for you or package your app.

What you need to do? Simple:

This is an experiment we will do until the release of Ubuntu 12.04 (April 26th). This should give us food for thought for the upcoming Ubuntu Developer Summit and depending on the success of the initiative, we will continue it.

Get Involved

  1. Read the Introduction to Ubuntu Development. It’s a short article which will help you understand how Ubuntu is put together, how the infrastructure is used and how we interact with other projects.
  2. Follow the instructions in the Getting Set Up article. A few simple commands, a registration at Launchpad and you should have all the tools you need, and you’re ready to go.
  3. Check out our instructions for how to fix a bug in Ubuntu, they come with small examples that make it easier to visualise what exactly you need to do.

Find something to work on

Pick a bitesize bug. These are the bugs we think should be easy to fix. Another option is to help out in one of our initiatives.

In addition to that there are loads more opportunities over at Harvest.

Getting in touch

There are many different ways to contact Ubuntu developers and get your questions answered.

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