Hello Planet Ubuntu!

Thu 26 June 2008

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Justin Dugger and I've been participating in Ubuntu for a while now. First as a tester and now as bug contact and (some) development. Most of what I do is request information from bug reporters and keep friendly relations with upstream. There's a thread on -devel-discuss about making Ubuntu's contributions more visible, and at the moment I think that's exactly backwards. We should be giving out care packages to the heroes upstream that make the bulk of our releases!

Some upstream recent projects I'm currently interested in and would like to thank for their efforts thus far:

  • Nouveau: For all the (what I shall generously call) activism about closed binary modules I've been reading recently, there's been little fanfare about this project. At the very least, I've seen dramatic improvement over the "nv" driver here, though I imagine other may have different experiences.

  • CellWriter: There are a few bugs that need to be sorted out, but ultimately, this is a fantastic step forward in Linux handwriting recognition. I should make a screencast demo of this at some point.

  • Compiz: Colorfilter is a great but obscure plugin that started life as an Google SoC project mentored by Ubuntu and is now in Ubuntu and Compiz upstream. At its core is a set of Cg filters for color transforms with a number of uses. It has filters for high contrast, "inverting" colors, and filters that can remove the colors that the colorblind can't perceive, so you can test your software or presentation.

  • Xournal: Another tablet oriented program, it lets you keep a high resolution written journal to take notes, make diagrams, whatever. I've found it useful for quick diagramming in technical conversations.

  • Debian Games Team: This team has been instrumental in keeping Debian and Ubuntu on top of new games and keeping games on top of new build environments. If you're an Ubuntu user looking to contribute upstream, this seems like a good place to start. My particular favorite is Gunroar, and it wouldn't have happened without serious effort from them. Thanks!

If you benefit from any of these (or others), I encourage you to take a moment to offer gratitude. Enthusiasm and praise are the grease on the wheels of Free Software.

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