Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

First GNOME Census Results

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the but-it's-in-the-constitution dept.

GNOME 175

supersloshy writes "The GNOME Census, a project to see who contributes to GNOME and how, has released its first set of results. The results group people by their reasons to contribute code, what they contributed code to, and what percentage of the total contributions they have. For example, 23.45% of code contributions were volunteer, 16.3% of code contributions came from Red Hat, 1% of contributions came from Canonical (which has caused a lot of controversy), and 0.24% came from Mozilla Corporation. The census results are also represented in diagrams (release activity, why contributions were made, and what was contributed to and by who). The report is also available here and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike license."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

doesn't seem that scandalous (5, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100138)

If the linked post is an accurate overview, at least, it looks like Red Hat is doing a lot more contributing to GNOME's core, while Canonical is doing a lot more building of apps, widgets, and other miscellaneous desktop stuff on top of GNOME. Both seem like reasonable things for an open-source company to contribute. Linux desktop environments need more hacking on the core, and need more interesting things built on top of that core too.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100170)

If you look at the maintainance map [neary-consulting.com] , you can see that Redhat is relavant in several areas, but most of it is volunteer. Canonical is not so relevant here (except for the default theme and the calculator -- lol).

Imagine your company was structured like that. Or that you'd have to sell this plan to your stakeholders. :) But it works!

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100402)

Does it "work" though? Canonical is still a hobby funded by Mark Shuttleworth which is not self-funding. Not even for the tiny amount of work which they do contribute. Commercially Canonical is proving that "Linux on the Desktop" is a failure.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100172)

It's only scandalous because Ubuntu is pretending to be the "user friendly" face of Linux while claiming that Red Hat is only good for servers.

Except that as this report shows, Ubuntu has basically done jack shit to improve Linux usability. First off, they're basically a reskin of Debian with a bunch of non-Free software deals.

Second off, pretty much all the applications they list as contributing are either Ubuntu-specific (as in, they solve problems that Ubuntu caused in the first place, like Computer Janitor) or they're ripoffs of other open source projects, like their notification system, which is Growl's "Smoke" theme. (And they list it 8 fucking times in a list of 9 applications they've "provided" - NOT A JOKE!)

Essentially, Ubuntu is claiming that they've brought Linux to the desktop. Except they haven't. Red Hat has done more - 16 times as much, in fact - towards getting Linux on the desktop, but Canonical is taking all the credit for Red Hat's effort. Really, Red Hat should have expected as much, since Ubuntu is just Debian with proprietary software.

While calling Red Hat a "proprietary software vendor."

I call bullshit (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100286)

Except that as this report shows, Ubuntu has basically done jack shit to improve Linux usability.

This report doesn't show that. There are lots of code. Combining all that code to a package that is somewhat nice, well configured and works out of the box is damn important. Even more important is the massive amount of documentatiton that the Ubuntu community has created about pretty much everything. It would take an idiot not to recognize the value of those things. But let's take an example.

I have an extra computer in my house (but no extra monitors, etc.) and I decided to install it as a debian server. There was a slight complication, though: It is a bit noisy so I don't want to keep it in my bedroom and I also don't want to run cables all over the floors so I went to a shop to buy a wireless adapter. They are traditionally PITA on linux side so I went out to google for linux compatible devices first. I found an awesome list created by ubuntu community (didn't find anything comparable from anywhere else) and bought a device that worked out of the box on Ubuntu. I got home and tried to install it on Debian... Which I didn't succeed at. I found a guide, it had a number of broken driver links. Then I found more guides with more links. After an hour or so I was able to aquire the package... But I couldn't get past 'make'. Another hour trying to get past the problem for no avail. (for the record, I'm a sophomore year software engineering student going for bachelor's degree. And at some point I asked my roommate, sophomore going for CS degree in another university, for help). Then I gave up trying to do it that way, decided "Meh. I'll have to at least use stuff from Ubuntu repos anyway...", formatted debian, installed ubuntu and it all worked out of the box. As it always does with Ubuntu.

I haven't had much experience with red hat lately but the work that Canonical is doing is obviously valuable.

Essentially, Ubuntu is claiming that they've brought Linux to the desktop. Except they haven't. Red Hat has done more - 16 times as much, in fact - towards getting Linux on the desktop, but Canonical is taking all the credit for Red Hat's effort.

You may say that "As Red Hat has been around longer and contributed constantly the whole time and done a lot of marketing, etc... Their overall contribution to Linux exceeds Canonical's by a wide margin" and I would completely agree with that. But if you say "Red hat has contributed 16 times as much code == red had has contributes 16 times as much to bringing linux to desktop", you are very, very wrong.

Re:I call bullshit (3, Interesting)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100492)

My guess: you used stable Debian.

Drivers usually come with the kernel, and Debian trades new drivers and other features for a stable environment. Ubuntu simply ships a more recent kernel, at the expense of less testing.

Another option is simply using Debian Stable with a backported kernel [kmuto.jp] . It's as easy to install as normal Debian, but comes with a more recent & less tested kernel.

Re:I call bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100988)

Drivers does not come with the kernel, they comes in the OS.
Linux kernel is the operating system, calling it just a kernel is totally wrong. Only under 1% of Linux is actual kernel functions. Most are device drivers but big part are other OS parts than kernel functions. Maybe about 10 000-20 000 lines of code are for kernel functions. Example Minix, it has a microkernel what is under 4000 lines of code. There are even smaller versions what can have only few hundred lines. But microkernel is not whole OS like original OS architecture, monolithic kernel.

Re:I call bullshit (1)

siride (974284) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101234)

Kernel isn't defined that way. A specific type of kernel, like microkernel, might say that only the most core functions need to be in the actual kernel, but that is only one type of implementation. The Linux kernel is still a kernel, even if it includes more functionality than Minix's kernel.

Re:I call bullshit (1)

jgrahn (181062) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100992)

My guess: you used stable Debian.

Drivers usually come with the kernel, and Debian trades new drivers and other features for a stable environment. Ubuntu simply ships a more recent kernel, at the expense of less testing.

Or, Ubuntu shipped non-free drivers and documented the hardware as supported without mentioning that clearly enough. I *think* Ubuntu does such things. Debian sure doesn't.

Re:I call bullshit (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101116)

At the end of the day, one _seems_ to work and one completely doesn't.

I wouldn't recommend Debian to "normal" people. Or even Ubuntu.

Ubuntu and the rest have made a lot of progress on "Desktop Linux" but they still have a long way to go. I used to prefer KDE to Gnome, but KDE seem to have lost their way or something, judging from their recent stuff.

Microsoft has lost their way too (the Win 9x/Win2K UI actually is not that badly thought out, then it got worse and worse from XP to Win 7), but they have the advantage of mass preinstallations.

Re:I call bullshit (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101426)

Try installing XP on one of the newer Toshiba Satellites. It doesn't have drivers either. Does it mean it's a bad OS?

I wouldn't recommend to normal people that they install and setup Debian, but I wouldn't recommend them to install Windows either - both can be a pain in the ass. Getting a pre-installed machine [lxer.com] is the way to go, imo.

Re:I call bullshit (4, Interesting)

crush (19364) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100546)

1. You're conflating Ubuntu and Canonical.

2. Canonical is a large, private company which has been around since 2004. If we compare the contributions only since 2004 then Red Hat has still contributed more code than Canonical: to EVERY part of the Linux stack. More egregiously if we compare the large, well-funded Canonical to small start ups like Litl, Collabora and Fluendo even then Canonical fails to contribute as much.

We've come a long way since our launch in 2004. We now have over 350 staff in more than 30 countries, and offices in London, Boston, Taipei, Montreal and the Isle of Man.

Everyone puts these Canonical freeloaders to shame.

You would indeed be wrong if you merely said "Red Hat contributes 16 times as much code". That's ONLY what they contribute to GNOME specifically. They develop the kernel, most of the toolchain for compilation, vast parts of the network stack, fonts, ... basically bloody everything AND they do that by adhering to Free Software and SHARING EVERYTHING UPSTREAM where it's easy for any distro to benefit from their work.

Re:I call bullshit (2, Insightful)

at_slashdot (674436) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100900)

Freeloaders? I think you don't know what free software is all about...

Re:I call bullshit (3, Funny)

Pollardito (781263) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101026)

he should clarify whether he means freeasinbeerloaders or freeasinfreedomloaders

Re:I call bullshit (2, Interesting)

Urza9814 (883915) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101428)

I found an awesome list created by ubuntu community (didn't find anything comparable from anywhere else)

Not sure why you couldn't find it, but Mandriva has had a database of supported hardware since before I started using Linux (which was Mandrake 9.2, in 2003). Having a list of supported hardware certainly isn't a new idea.
http://www.mandriva.com/hardware/ [mandriva.com]

installed ubuntu and it all worked out of the box. As it always does with Ubuntu.

Glad you've had good luck with it. Last couple times I've tried I couldn't even get the installer to boot. And when my brother tried it took 4 days to get his wifi card to work (a card which works out of the box with Mandriva.) Stuck with Mandriva for many years because of that, though I've recently switched to Arch. And while it takes a couple hours to get the system setup initially on Arch, I couldn't be happier. Haven't had a single problem since installing it.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (1, Flamebait)

psavo (162634) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100298)

I still remember time when all of fedora & RedHat said a big FUCK YOU to any user wanting reasonably working 3D on desktop. That's user friendly for sure.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100336)

You do? When?

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100340)

Care to elaborate?

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (4, Insightful)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100346)

Yeah? Link?

Maybe that coincided with the time when there were no free 3D drivers, and Red Hat forwarded the "Fuck You" from hardware vendors since they (a) hadn't the drivers developed yet and (b) had a principle problem with including proprietary drivers.

Then (in my opinion) Ubuntu et al not-so-strict distros included proprietory drivers, Linux became more present on the desktop, Hardware vendors noticed Linux. Open-source driver developers had more time and resources to continue and eventually brought forth free drivers.

What's your version?

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100434)

You misunderstood. "FUCK YOU" was the name of their latest 3D driver. :-)

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (3, Insightful)

crush (19364) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100512)

Fedora and Red Hat provide Free Software in their repositories. It's trivial to install the non-Free drivers (and their associated hidden bugs) supplied by NVIDIA.

In addition to that Debian, Red Hat and Novell and Intel and other honest players have spent huge amounts of time coding up Free drivers with the Nouveau project (free NVIDIA drivers [freedesktop.org] ), Intel drivers [intellinuxgraphics.org] , and ATI/AMD drivers [freedesktop.org]

Sounds like the only one saying a big FUCK YOU is your self.

16 times? Strange metric... (3, Insightful)

mangu (126918) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100506)

Red Hat has done more - 16 times as much, in fact - towards getting Linux on the desktop

That's assuming each line of code has the same value.

For me the important point is with which system can I get a computer working quicker and with less effort for installation and maintenance. Ubuntu wins.

OK, you may say that this only reflects the superiority of APT over RPM. Comparing Ubuntu with Debian, Ubuntu wins again.
 

Re:16 times? Strange metric... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101318)

That's assuming each line of code has the same value.

Oh so true... but perhaps not the support you were looking for. Much of Red Hat's work has focused on the critical infrastructure for the desktop -whether that's GTK/PANGO/GLIB, DBUS and the myriad other vital but unsexy stuff they do... compared to what... a few fucking limited apps from Ubuntu contributors and a theme.

Ubuntu is basically a marketing parasite at this point.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (2, Insightful)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100590)

That's complete BS. Like the link pointed out, they may be trying to submit stuff and it's not accepted. But even if that isn't the case the one thing that Ubuntu does much much better than anyone else is provide a huge collection of useful easy to read documentation that can be applied to most any Linux distro.

They may not be doing much coding work but they are making people more aware of Linux and rather than fighting each other and making the community look like a bunch of dicks we should appreciate what they have done because quite frankly they didn't have to do anything and the competition is good. Fedora wasn't that great for working straight out of the box, from my experience a few years ago but Ubuntu was. That means users had a good option to try (better for everyone) and Redhat needed to improve which, I think they have.

If writing good code was all it took to be a popular OS then Linux should be a lot more popular than it is now. It's not and that's because it needs people doing other things some of which Canonical are doing.

no kidding. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100884)

When I'm trying to fix a general linux problem, I will often put Ubuntu in the google search terms list just because it is MUCH more likely that I will find the solution on an Ubuntu forum somewhere, even it the solution needs to be tweaked a bit for my specific case.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (1)

Risen888 (306092) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101338)

But even if that isn't the case the one thing that Ubuntu does much much better than anyone else is provide a huge collection of useful easy to read documentation that can be applied to most any Linux distro... ...it needs people doing other things some of which Canonical are doing.

Except that Canonical's not doing that. The Ubuntu community is, and that's a totally different group of people. You're right that it's great work, and work that all of the free software community benefits from. But it's not work that Canonical's footing the bill for.

Which is doubly bad. First, Canonical tends to wrap themselves in that flag whenever they're faced with criticism, which is disingenuous in the extreme. Second, it steals the well-earned credit from the great people who really are putting in the hours to do that work.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (2, Insightful)

Will.Woodhull (1038600) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101182)

Parent post, and the articles that are raising this "controversy", are comparing apples to oranges.

Red Hat and Canonical are both commercial entities. But Red Hat has been profitable for several years; Canonical has yet to generate a profit-- it is still in its start-up phase. One cannot expect a business that is still completely dependent on an angel's generosity for financing (thank you, Mark) to be as active in the community as a business that has a positive cash flow. Red Hat has the resources to pay some of its personnel to shepherd its developments through the upstream process. Canonical has chosen to put its limited resources to other tasks.

Also note that all the Ubuntu's distros are supported by Canonical. But Red Hat split off Fedora sometime before Ubuntu became a player. Red Hat now has no free-as-in-beer offerings that compare with the Ubuntu distros.

And in any case, Ubuntu's primary contribution is in meeting the needs of newcomers to Linux and FOSS, and it does that exceedingly well. Better than any other distro has done before. Proselytizing-- raising the public's awareness about Linux and FOSS-- is generally recognized as a valid mode of contributing to FOSS. One that is especially appropriate for individuals and businesses who are not in a position to contribute code. Ubuntu has done more in this area than Red Hat has ever done.

The spokesman from Red Hat who apparently set up this "controversy" should be ashamed of his words. A significant portion of Red Hat's new clients are from businesses whose managers tested the Linux waters with Ubuntu on their personal machines, and then went to Red Hat for its expertise in supporting enterprise systems. Ubuntu does not compete with Red Hat and is not riding Red Hat's coattails; Ubuntu's existence drives business to Red Hat.

Nota Bene: In 2008, Mark Shuttleworth guessed that Canonical might become "cash flow positive" in 3 to 5 years. The recession has probably pushed that forward somewhat.

Re:doesn't seem that scandalous (1)

motang (1266566) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101196)

Excellent point.

Nor does it seem that bad. (1)

dov_0 (1438253) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101224)

With Canonicals habit of hacking pretty much everything to suit what they are doing with Ubuntu at any one moment, it is probably safer for everyone that most of the development is left in more stable hands. I am not saying that Canonical would necessarily produce buggy code, but much of their code would be Ubuntu specific and not suitable for upstream development.

Half the story (5, Insightful)

ThoughtMonster (1602047) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100158)

The census is correct in implying that Canonical has not as many modules in upstream GNOME repositories, however that is only half the story. The census counts all commits since the beginning of the project, so Red Hat has a 6-year head start. Not to mention that Red Hat is a much bigger company than Canonical.

Canonical provides a lot of things of value to GNOME and the free software community in general. The (recently established) Canonical Design Team produces research [canonical.com] on software usability, the value of which is not easily quantifiable. Many pieces of GNOME software live on Launchpad and are not strictly part of GNOME upstream (Simple Scan, for instance). This might change if (or when) these modules are accepted in GNOME proper.

To claim that Canonical is freeloading on other companies' contributions is a bit of myopic, in my opinion. How many upstream bug reports came from Ubuntu users?

Re:Half the story (4, Insightful)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100214)

To claim that Canonical is freeloading on other companies' contributions is a bit of myopic, in my opinion. How many upstream bug reports came from Ubuntu users?

Too many, we marked them as dup. But your point is invalid since Canonical != Ubuntu users and Canonical != Ubuntu maintainers. Latter are all in the volunteer camp. Red Hat users & maintainers are probably largely there too.

The way I see it Ubuntu is mainly a packager (distribution) and behaves like one. They mainly configure, build and distribute the existing software. Of course they provide patches for bugs they encounter, and they send it upstream to reduce their own work.

But Canonical doesn't have the means and will to truly commit developer resources to Linux (like Red Hat does). They want to achieve something with what is there*, and they are very good at communicating, community-building, reacting to users, connecting users and developers. That is Ubuntu's value.
Red Hat has some of this too, but for them it is business to engineer a Linux that works, because that is what they sell.

*Greg Kroah Hartman complained Ubuntu doesn't give patches upstream.

Re:Half the story (4, Insightful)

ThoughtMonster (1602047) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100284)

... But your point is invalid since Canonical != Ubuntu users and Canonical != Ubuntu maintainers. Latter are all in the volunteer camp. ...

I disagree. In principle, you are correct, Canonical, as a company, has nothing to do with me, as a user, filing a bug report on some piece of software. However, how many of these bug reports would exist in the first place if not for Ubuntu, for which Canonical is largely (if not wholly) responsible? Something about eyeballs and shallow bugs.

For me, Canonical succeeded where most other companies did not, in marketing Linux and GNOME as user-friendly solutions, which in turn, I believe, will draw developers to produce more software for Linux.

Whilst this is, in part, due to the relative maturity of both products, for which Red Hat is largely responsible, I believe that GNOME benefits greatly from Canonical's approach towards user-friendliness as much as Canonical benefits from the infrastructure on which they base their products. Canonical has produced great software (like Upstart) which may not be obvious.

Modders attention please! (1)

openfrog (897716) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100818)

I don't have mod points today, unfortunately. After reading every comment on this story, I would certainly mod the parent up! The last paragraph in particular succinctly sums it all.

Re:Half the story (3, Informative)

houghi (78078) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100344)

Greg Kroah Hartman complained Ubuntu doesn't give patches upstream.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3385088017824733336#
Keynote address by Greg K-H given during the inaugural Linux Plumbers Conference Sept 17, 2008 in Portland, OR.

Freeloaders = good (5, Interesting)

Alwin Henseler (640539) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100246)

To claim that Canonical is freeloading on other companies' contributions is a bit of myopic, in my opinion.

'Freeloading' often has a negative meaning, but in open source land the opposite is true IMHO. Any additional user helps to improve the software just by using it:

  • Increased user base means increased market share, bringing open source software closer to the point where companies take Linux support more serious for their products, governments may take a 2nd look at their open source use & support for open standards, websites are checked more often in alternative (read: non-IE) browsers, etc, etc.
  • More users = more testers, more bug reports etc. This ultimately helps the software quality, if more bugs are found (& hopefully, fixed).
  • More users = (over time) more experienced users, that can help newcomers get started.

So regardless of who deserves credits, that's many networks effects that benefit all users of such software, Gnome included. Freeriding on that is about as harmful as watching new years' fireworks without lighting any of your own - you still contribute to the party, just by being there. And in that sense, Canonical has done a lot to support Linux - by attracting & supporting many new users.

Re:Freeloaders = good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100392)

"Canonical has done a lot to support Linux - by attracting & supporting many new users." - that is disputed http://www.happyassassin.net/2010/07/29/the-success-of-ubuntu/

Re:Freeloaders = good (3, Interesting)

noidentity (188756) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100398)

This isn't even freeloading, because it doesn't put any load on a project to use a copy of its source code. This isn't something physical where it's limited.

Re:Freeloaders = good (1)

crush (19364) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100468)

Sure it is. Community and users are a resource. They can an asset to either a succesful company (Red Hat) which has a consistent, strong track record of contributing vast amounts of Free Software to every part of the stack (from kernel on up to network and sound management, to the desktop and free fonts) OR they can be expended by a (so far) commercially unsuccesful hobby company (Canonical) which is devoted to recouping Mark Shuttleworth's lost millions and has so far failed to contribute anything of note.

Re:Freeloaders = good (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100528)

Well I'd better uninstall Firefox et al, because apparently there is some new clause in F/OSS that says if you use it, you MUST submit code to it

Re:Freeloaders = good (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101076)

Where is the load that is being put on something? I'm not clear on that.

Re:Freeloaders = good (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100476)

Your later two points depend entirely on the users actively helping. Most users will not file bug reports (merely complain, and usually somewhere where it doesn't matter) and will not help others.

Re:Half the story (3, Insightful)

crush (19364) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100450)

Many pieces of GNOME software live on Launchpad and are not strictly part of GNOME upstream (Simple Scan, for instance).

That's the problem: Canonical is not doing the hard work to get what little they do write upstream. Stuff that is not upstream is just balkanized, fractured, non-maintainable code. It doesn't provide any benefit to the rest of the GNU/Linux community, i.e. the people that write all the rest of the code and upstream it so that Canonical can exist in the first place. Usability research is useful, but when I click your link I see one study (on Empathy) and further clicking around on the Canonical Design team site reveals [canonical.com] that, as so much of Canonical appears to be, it's all about marketing. Seriously: ONE study and then three guides devoted to "guidelines to support the brand documentation and help create consistent brand usage."?

Re:Half the story (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100932)

Yeah, Red Hat has had a 6 year lead on Canonical maybe. But look at some of these much, much smaller companies that didn't have a 6-year lead over Canonical who are on the list and beating them: Collabora, Lanedo, Openismus, Codethink. How long was Eazel even around, like maybe two years? litl is brand new and isn't even a GNOME based company and they're outranking Canonical.

Lanedo, Openismus, and Codethink are tiny companies with only a handful of people who work there. They haven't been around as long as Canonical, they're not as well-funded as Canonical, and they're rocking the contributor list.

At least they're beating The Family International, whoever that is.

Re:Half the story (0, Offtopic)

Elektroschock (659467) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101188)

Canonical did the mistake to base Ubuntu on Gnome, a very fragmented infrastructure, instead of KDE.

Re:Half the story (1)

Risen888 (306092) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101352)

Canonical provides a lot of things of value to GNOME and the free software community in general. The (recently established) Canonical Design Team produces research [canonical.com] on software usability, the value of which is not easily quantifiable. Many pieces of GNOME software live on Launchpad and are not strictly part of GNOME upstream (Simple Scan, for instance). This might change if (or when) these modules are accepted in GNOME proper.

The point flew right by you there and you completely missed it. Why is all this stuff living on Launchpad? Why does Canonical put walls around their garden? Why have they effectively forked the Gnome design process rather than working with the people who are actually a part of the community?

Apples and Oranges (4, Insightful)

WarJolt (990309) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100162)

Redhat is publicly traded, has over 9 times as many employees as canonical and actually makes a lot more money then Canonical.
Quit picking on the small fry. Ubuntu contributes enough.

Re:Apples and Oranges (2, Interesting)

JonJ (907502) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100302)

The Ubuntu fanboys enjoy ripping on Red Hat for not contributing to the desktop, and for being a boring company focusing only on the serverside of things. Seems like that position is bullshit. People are also claiming that Red Hat doesn't care about the desktop, which this proves is also pure crap. For the people positioning Ubuntu as the desktop champion of GNU/Linux they're not contributing anywhere. Not the kernel, not GNOME, no where are they contributing a significant amount of patches. And all the apologists are busy trying to justify that the most downloaded distribution on distrowatch is not giving back anything significant. Even the fluendo guys are contributing more than Ubuntu.

Re:Apples and Oranges (3, Insightful)

arose (644256) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100954)

Is this over the lifetime of Gnome or that of Canonical. If it's the former, then your argument doesn't hold water. Yay for statistics without methodology!

Re:Apples and Oranges (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101456)

Hey, fuck you too buddy! Ever think that it takes us noobs a little while to catch up to the gurus? I am currently eyeball deep into MIT opencourseware trying to learn some CS skills so I can contribute. Not only that but since I started installing Ubuntu on my friends boxes some of them have started installing it on their friends. More eyeballs means more customers, more customers means maybe your favorite company might actually give a crap about releasing some drivers for your favorite widget. So be careful next time you go calling people fanboys, we should all be on the same side here.

Re:Apples and Oranges (1)

musmax (1029830) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100342)

This. And why with all that head start is Ubuntu more popular today than Fedora ? [1]. I'm all for tribalism, it keeps us honest, and focussed on the things that matter to us, given of course that you know what your core values are. RH the big red gorilla is out-shined by a 1/10 company started by some dude from Africa with a thing for Kalahari brown. And haters run to defend the behemoth - where have I seen this before ? Maybe I would be less bitter if I didn't have to fight with CenTOS5.4 all day long... [1] http://www.google.com/trends?q=fedora,ubuntu&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all&sort=0 [google.com]

Re:Apples and Oranges (1)

JonJ (907502) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100548)

And why with all that head start is Ubuntu more popular today than Fedora?

It might be because Ubuntu isn't based in the US and thus can integrate tools to get patented software codecs easier installed. They've also made it easier to install proprietary drivers, which is always a mess in Fedora. So, the difference is Red Hat actually does open source and is rather fundamental about it, while Ubuntus morals are more flexible.

Re:Apples and Oranges (2, Interesting)

brejc8 (223089) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100618)

They've also made it easier to install proprietary drivers, which is always a mess in Fedora.

[citation required]
And not just a post by an Ubuntu user who heard it off a friend. I hear this every day and never met anyone who has supporting evidence. Along with "Fedora is just for servers", "Fedora uses bleeding edge so nothing works" and "there be dragons in them hills".

I install Ubuntu, Suse and Fedora on university machines on a daily basis. There is no massive discerning difference between these distributions that makes one much easier for 3d drivers than the other. All three have package repos for proprietary drivers and are as easy to set up.

Re:Apples and Oranges (1)

phoenixwade (997892) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100902)

I install Ubuntu, Suse and Fedora on university machines on a daily basis. There is no massive discerning difference between these distributions that makes one much easier for 3d drivers than the other. All three have package repos for proprietary drivers and are as easy to set up.

I find it difficult to believe that you install three different distros on a single entities machines on a daily basis. Why would anyone do that? Why create such an IT headache by intentionally deploying three separate distros on apparently a huge number of machines, or why continually re-install three differnt distros on the same machines when it's obviously not working (if it were, you wouldn't have to re-install so often).

Re:Apples and Oranges (2, Interesting)

brejc8 (223089) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100970)

I install whichever OS they ask for. I also install Windows XP and getting the accelerated drivers for that is actually a pain. Why all three? Because there are Suse fans who feel most comfortable using Suse. Because there are multiprocessor simulators which are distributed only in .deb packages. Because, and I really must strongly emphasise this, there really isn't much of a difference between the distributions and there are no dragons!. They are all collections of the same software. If I solve a bug on one, it is the same solution on the others. This is why I feel strongly that distros should upstream their efforts. But perhaps most importantly, I do this because I want people to be comfortable using their computers. The reinstall cycle is about once every 2 years. I would appreciate you not insinuating people being mentally deficient on the ground that I put in more effort that is strictly necessary, after all the open source community is driven by people who put in more effort than the minimum necessary to get the job done, in order to make others' lives better

Re:Apples and Oranges (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100976)

Did you miss that it's a university? Logic need not apply, especially in turf wars where CS, Physics, and 3 different engineering departments all disagree on what OSes are acceptable, and IT has no authority to settle it because they're staff, not faculty. If you can get by on 2-3 Windows versions, Mac OS X, and 3 Linux distros, you're doing pretty well.

Re:Apples and Oranges (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100368)

then look at the gnome-constribution comparison between Ubuntu and (kde distro) Mandriva...

Re:Apples and Oranges (1)

keeboo (724305) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100674)

I think that Canonical has been in better situation than Mandriva... for years.
Also, there's the fact that Mandriva was always KDE-oriented, not Gnome.

Re:Apples and Oranges (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100724)

so, Canonical, with a clear gnome foucs, is doing ok because they are larger than mandriva, which doesn't have a clear gnome focus, and contribute less to gnome upstream than mandriva(and other even smaller entities)? ok..

Languages (5, Interesting)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100186)

One interesting observation about the contributions on language bindings: Obviously volunteers are mostly into scripting languages (Python, Perl), while each compiled language is dominated by a single company (C++ by Openismus, Java by Operation dynamics, and C# by Novell).

Canonical's code contribution (5, Informative)

eddy_crim (216272) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100254)

Canonical's code contribution is irrelevant. What open source has always needed is some polish and some marketing. Thats what canonical provide, they polished and marketed (to an extent) a decent distro. OSS has never been short of decent code and quality software engineering. Canonical are providing a great link in the value chain of linux and as long as the basic prinicipals are upheld im all for it!

Re:Canonical's code contribution (-1, Flamebait)

houghi (78078) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100300)

Canonical does not market Open Source, it markets Ubuntu.

Re:Canonical's code contribution (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100348)

take a look at various start pages of linux distributions. guess where you won't find the word "linux" even mentioned...

Re:Canonical's code contribution (2, Informative)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100510)

Debian GNU/Linux is a free distribution of the GNU/Linux operating system. It is maintained and updated through the work of many users who (...)

Re:Canonical's code contribution (0)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100948)

http://www.ubuntu.com/ [ubuntu.com] - no mention of linux

http://www.opensuse.com/ [opensuse.com] : redirects to http://en.opensuse.org/Main_Page [opensuse.org] : 1st sentence "Project: The openSUSE project is a worldwide effort that promotes the use of Linux everywhere

http://www.redat.com/ [redat.com] iGATE Powers Its Mission-Critical ManageMe Application on JBoss Enterprise Application Platform and Red Hat Enterprise Linux (close call on that one ...)

http://www.mandriva.com/ [mandriva.com] 1st para : More than 3 million people in the world enjoy our Mandriva Linux platform on their computer.

http://http//fedoraproject.org/ [http] : Fedora is a Linux-based operating system that showcases the latest in free and open source software.

http:/// [http] linuxmint.com/ : it's in their url, title, ect: Linux Mint 9 KDE Linux Mint 9 KDE is out!

http://www.debian.org/ [debian.org] : Debian uses the Linux kernel (the core of an operating system), but most of the basic OS tools come from the GNU project; hence the name GNU/Linux.

pclinuxos, puppy linux, etc ...

It's funny how Canonical wants to be seen as the "canonical linux distro", but it's all just marketing fluff and FUGLY color schemes.

Re:Canonical's code contribution (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100540)

And this is exactly why it works. Do you see Google marketing Android as Linux based? Certainly not anywhere outside of it's dev community.

Linux, believe it or not, has a bit of a scary co-notation with the general public. Sure, it has come a long way from being called "for hackers only", but it's not there yet. Calling it Ubuntu and dropping the Linux reference is a GREAT idea. I would recommend it to anyone starting a new distro.

Cocoa-based-candy may sound great to you, but I'll just have my Chocolate thank you.

Re:Canonical's code contribution (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101072)

Excuse but Canonical does not promote or market OSS (Open Source Software). It only promote and market Ubuntu.
It does not suggest to search and try other distributions or even software projects what Canonical itself is using.
It only promotes itself and wants all the users to come to use Ubuntu and contribute to Ubuntu.

Canonical is $$$ making firm what idea is to make money, not to promote or market OSS for others. If it would, Mark would never founded Canonical but would have hired more developers for upstream projects and it would have come much more efficent and better results when the upstream would have one or two hired guys. Even as part time or seasonaly.

Canonical is spreading lies and misinformation about Linux. They are not trying to get people to start using some OSS in the companies or home, but get Ubuntu.

And Canonical loves the propietary software. Their COO thinks so and Mark has said that closed source is better if it gives better results for end user. Ubuntu is everything what Debian does not want to be = non-free software system.

Canonical is just a company. It is not contributing to community but for itself. It is not developing documents for the community but for itself. It is not even using same localisations than community, it wants to make themself.

Canonical is not trying to get the "Linux compatible" stickers to hardware but "Ubuntu compatible" stickers.
Canonical does not care the fact thet Linux kernel is the operating system. They want people to believe that Ubuntu is the operating system and it is different than Linux. Actually they want people to believe that Ubuntu is better operating system than Linux!

Ubuntu users are not talking about GNOME and it development direction. They are talking about Ubuntu and its desktop and how Canonical should do next generation desktop. People do not understand that GNOME is the desktop in the Ubuntu and Canonical does not control it, develop it or does not contribute to it. Why all suggestions to Ubuntu and for Canonical, while they do not make a difference what they would do in GNOME forums?

If wanted to contribute to OSS, contribute it to upstream, not to the distribution what you are using!
Distribution is nothing else than just a distribution. It is your tool what you use to do something with computer. Just like the Linux is the OS what is used to run all GNU's and all other software. It is not somekind magical thing what makes stuff. It is just a tool. Distribution is same thing. It just a package in your chosen ways packaged so you get tools what you can use to contribute to the upstream, not to the distributor itself.

The only difference what distributor should do among others, is to offer support. But never ever by tying own customers/users to itself but keep them so free that they can when ever they want, change distribution or choose to get support from somene else or start contributing to upstream over the distributor itself.

Canonical is not good at all to the community. It is just doing "Mr. Nice Guy" trick for Media and most people take it without thinking what actually is happening.

Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (5, Insightful)

mattbee (17533) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100292)

When it comes to bugs and usability problems, Ubuntu run a much sharper bug tracker - it usually has coverage of almost any minor GNOME issue. Between Canonical and their users, It might have taken many man-hours to track down, discuss and identify a small usability bug, which might only result in a fix of a few lines of code. It's not about turning the screw, it's knowing which screw to turn [tumblr.com] . So counting lines of code as the only contribution is completely unfair to Canonical.

This doesn't just go for GNOME; the best discussion of kernel and firefox bugs usually ends up being hosted on Ubuntu, just because they have fostered the largest community of enthusiastic Linux desktop users.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (-1, Troll)

brejc8 (223089) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100362)

And that's the entire point. Ubuntu has a massive following of very vocal non-coding users. I contribute an upstream project and I often go to the Ubuntu forums looking for any bugs people have found. These are swamped with hundreds of trolls, moaners and flamers. Most will explain how much of a waste of time a particular project is, how the coders are morons and how things are getting worse every day, while smugly pretending to be uber-experts in everything. None of them would ever consider investigating bugs, talking to people upstream, downloading the code, submitting patches. This is not contributing back to the community.

All this noise distracts from the real contributors who actually do the work, quietly, productively and without much of a fanfare.

Ubuntu community gives as much to the open source community as 4chan gives to the modern art movement.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100494)

#ubuntu on freenode is just as bad. Though, that's mostly because there are worse than 10 people with problems to every one with an answer. You still get your share of trolls etc just like anywhere else, but the ops usually remove them quickly.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (3, Insightful)

Spewns (1599743) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101098)

None of them would ever consider investigating bugs, talking to people upstream, downloading the code, submitting patches.

They're users. Most simply don't have the know-how to do these things, and it's unreasonable to expect them to, especially in the "downloading code and submitting patches" department. You make it sound like a trivial thing for even hobbyist programmers to do, especially with the bloated, ad hoc codebases they'd probably be dealing with. And if you're hearing from them, they are talking to upstream. Upstream to Ubuntu users is the Ubuntu forums or Canonical.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (2, Informative)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101158)

> This is not contributing back to the community.

I think a lot are pointing out which dishes suck. They may not be able to tell you exactly why and how, but if your target is the general public, that's useful info if you know how to sort it out properly.

> All this noise distracts from the real contributors who actually do the work, quietly, productively and without much of a fanfare.

If the bug reports are distracting the workers then it's the fault of the organization.

The bug reports do not have to go straight to the developers. They can go to someone else first whose job is to figure out which are the top problems to be fixed - there are always bugs so you have to prioritize. Maybe someone could also figure out whether the problem is a bug that's best fixed in a module or one that's best fixed by changing the architecture in the future - too often if people are too busy fixing stuff at the tree level, they don't fix stuff at the forest level.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (1)

brejc8 (223089) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101270)

The issue is that there are no developers there. There are just users talking authoritatively at other users. You get no inflow of information and the same rumours, bad advice, scaremongering stories are stated again and again.

For example: One person blogs about KMS now working on Intel cards and how plymouth will use this, next person says that nvidia and ati wont be supported by plymouth, the next person blames his system crash on plymouth as that was the thing that was on the screen during the boot, the next person worries how it is impossible to remove plymouth now, the next cries out a conspiracy theory of how the systems are locked-down and freedom is suppressed, the next complains that time is wasted doing this work rather than fixing feature X which he told to a friend once in the pub, yet no one has come running to fix.

None of these things are true and at no point does a developer step in to say "I understand the system and here are the facts". Primarily because there are no developers, just packagers. And though the entire process of spreading fallacies, everyone feels great about themselves thinking they have contributed something. They haven't.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (1, Informative)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101282)

Really? Because all I've ever seen while browsing Ubuntu forums is someone posting a problem, followed by 12 pages of people going "me too!" and a few "so, does anyone know how to fix this yet?" It's the AOL of linux distributions. And its not like I haven't tried Ubuntu before. The problems that I've run into with it generally require me to step outside of the approved Ubuntu point-and-click way of doing things and edit config files by hand. Nothing is where it should be, and often my manual changes get over-written by GUI config bullshit. It's exasperating to say the least.

The majority of Ubuntu users that I've met in person fall into two camps: people who never should have been using Linux or Unix in the first place, and Rubyists. I don't have particularly charitable feelings towards Ubuntu or Canonical. The fact is, they aren't really contributing much of anything of value to the wider world, and their marketing is a detriment to society. I once had the misfortune of taking an over-flow support call while working at a web hosting company where the customer couldn't figure out how to use FTP to upload his website. Of course, I assumed he was using Windows. In the most heinous fucking southern, hvac-guy accent, he was like, "I don't use windows, I use that linux ubuntu." There used to be minimum standards of competency which were de-facto enforced. Back in the golden days. Before Twitter.

RedHat has been around for a long time, contributed a lot to various projects, and deserves credit. I don't typically have good things to say about any for-profit company, however I'm willing to trust RedHat fairly well. I've used their products in a production environment in the past and used to buy all the box releases they used to sell in stores for my Linux machine I ran along side a FreeBSD machine.

Re:Lines of code isn't the only thing that counts (1)

Risen888 (306092) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101380)

This doesn't just go for GNOME; the best discussion of kernel and firefox bugs usually ends up being hosted on Ubuntu, just because they have fostered the largest community of enthusiastic Linux desktop users.

And that's a huge problem, because it tends to stay there. It's awfully hard to make the argument that it's helpful to upstream to explicitly tell your users "Use our bugtracker," and then fail to kick that upstream. Launchpad's an echo chamber.

If you want to get paid.. (4, Insightful)

onion2k (203094) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100324)

If you want to get paid for what you do then charge for it. I don't mean money necessarily. There are lots of ways of getting paid. But charge something.

In this case the reciprocal amount of work people are demanding from Canonical is a form of payment. If you want to claim it's not "fair" that one company is doing more for a project than another you've got to set up the system to stop them, otherwise you have no grounds for your complaint. You can't set up a stall with a big sign saying "Free, please take what you want, no need to give anything back in return" and then moan when someone takes you up on your offer.

Re:If you want to get paid.. (2, Interesting)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100436)

I wasn't going to post but maybe this is the reason for the tribal comments.
There is no value in measuring contributions by various sections of the linux community commercial or others.

Red hat makes valuable contributions so does Cannonical, so do many other companies other than SCO i think we can agree on that. I have a bias towards ubuntu it works on my systems and i am familiar with it. However i don't think the sun shines out of cannonicals arse , that now belongs to oracle.

but seriously measuring contributions made by other people is divisive and unnecessary. I've contributed in a few area's and just helping newbies is a contribution that most can make. The size of the contribution doesn't matter. Redhat is commercially successful and turns a profit mark shuttleworth pumps money into Linux via ubuntu and the parent seems to say that isn't good enough do more.

really size of contribution is up to the contributer and assigning value to each contribution is just divisive
linux is being used more by more people and there are more people contributing thats all we need to know.

getting partisan and making digs only makes for trouble.

all contributions have some value

Re:If you want to get paid.. (1)

crush (19364) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100576)

but seriously measuring contributions made by other people is divisive and unnecessary. I've contributed in a few area's and just helping newbies is a contribution that most can make. The size of the contribution doesn't matter. Redhat is commercially successful and turns a profit mark shuttleworth pumps money into Linux via ubuntu and the parent seems to say that isn't good enough do more.

Measuring contributions is a useful way to see what is an efficient way of generating Free Software vis a vis different business models. It's fairly obvious that Canonical's model is a bust both with regards to generating profit for its owner and producing Free Software that the rest of us can use. When criticized for their lack of useful kernel code in the past Canonical's marketing spin was that they added value back to the wider GNU/Linux community by doing desktop work.

Now we have actual statistics on Canonical's desktop contributions and they're less than impressive.

When Canonical fails all that they will leave behind is a lot of marketing hot air which will provide fodder for Apple and Microsoft and Oracle to claim: Linux Failed On the Desktop.

Check which modules get rejected (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100356)

The reason why RedHat's piece of GNOME commits is so big is because they have been rejecting modules developed by competing companies. Novell made a push to get their start menu included in GNOME, it was rejected by the RedHat majority. Same thing with Compiz, a compositing window manager developed by David Reeveman of Novell, also rejected despite it being an almost complete drop in replacement for Metacity which is ancient RedHat technology. He also worked on bringing OpenGL into xorg and had a working prototype for how to do it. Also rejected because RedHat favored a different approach by writing AIGLX [wikipedia.org] . The reason why Novell doesn't have a large stake in GNOME's codebase is certainly not for a lack of trying. There are dozen more modules that have been rejected over the years. What they all have in common is that RedHat employers aren't working on them.

Then check what modules have had no problem getting included: PulseAudio, Clutter, DeviceKit, Cheese, gnome-user-share... All created by RedHat employers. Basically, when it comes to the core of GNOME's infrastructure, RedHat has been very effective in keeping outsiders out.

Re:Check which modules get rejected (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100644)

It looked to me that there was a reason [freedesktop.org] why xgl was removed.

Re:Check which modules get rejected (1)

PixelSlut (620954) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100942)

Clutter was not created by Red Hat employees, it was created by what are now Intel employees. They were previously a small company called OpenedHand and they were bought by Intel.

Re:Check which modules get rejected (2, Insightful)

Bazer (760541) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100980)

Let's recap what both companies contributed:
  • Novell: Compiz, XGL (unmaintaned X server with OpenGL)
  • Red Hat: PulseAudio, Clutter, DeviceKit, Cheese, gnome-user-share

Notice something about the scopes of each of those projects?

Same thing with Compiz, a compositing window manager developed by David Reeveman of Novell, also rejected despite it being an almost complete drop in replacement for Metacity which is ancient RedHat technology.

Metacity ancient? What do you make of the whole X server then? Should we replace it too? Don't get me wrong. I don't dismiss Compiz as eye-candy because it's far more than that. It came way to early. It was unusable without proprietary drivers and unstable with. To this day Compiz has problems with stability on anything but maybe Intel boards. The necessary groundwork just isn't there yet.

Re:Check which modules get rejected (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101162)

Compiz unstable? Ubuntu ships Compiz by default and it's just fine.

Re:Check which modules get rejected (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101246)

He also worked on bringing OpenGL into xorg and had a working prototype for how to do it. Also rejected because RedHat favored a different approach by writing AIGLX [wikipedia.org] .

The really sad thing about that is that the overlap between the two is tiny - they rejected all of Xgl just because they could get a very small amount of its functionality some other way.

Re:Check which modules get rejected (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101366)

Novells menu for GNOME is crap! I just used it again on my mothers Netbook and you actually can not use it at all. When ever you want to launch a not-so-often-used application program. It is faster to launch gnome-terminal and start it from there than go "all programs" -list.
The "favorites" is such that you have difficulties to get it ordered as you want. Or to get all wanted favorites there but still keep the most used list big enough, even with 1920x1200 resolution. KickOff is much better what Novell did but they could not manage get it done for GNOME.

And what comes to Compiz-Fusion, it is crap! It is already dying (what some contributors are saying) and it is too complex code to maintain. And I think you did not know that Compiz as wrote behind the doors so no one could contribute and make it better. No, they wanted to have in done closed way.

PulseAudio has got just too bad reputition, mainly because Ubuntu users because Canonical did not configure it propely. I have used PulseAudio almost since it was published in main distributions and it has worker perfectly. Only thing what I can whine is that it has only GTK+ configuration frontends and not Qt for KDE SC.

Clutter is owned by Intel, not by RedHat. And it was developed by other company before Intel bought it. DeviceKit is neither RedHats work, it was just taken in use first by Fedora, then some other distros and after that the Ubuntu. So do not whine about it either.
Cheese is done by one guy (Daniel G.Siegel) and purely for GNOME upstream. So you miss again. Seems you just want to blame RedHat for that Canonical just has not wanted to contribute to the upstream.

And if you have not understanded, RedHat does not control GNOME. GNOME is part of GNU. Unless you want to say that GNU (and so on GNOME) does not control itself, but is controlled by RedHat, then you would be correct.

But please, just stop building wild theories how RedHat is the evil, just like Canonical is calling RedHat as propietary company while it itself is such!

Why can't people just leave Canonical alone. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100560)

Canonical have done what was really needed in open source. They have introduced some slick marketing, imposed some order whether the users like it or not, and opened the doors to other technologies which the Linux zealots would have banned. More importantly they have found a way to blend 'free' with 'paid for' software and services with Ubuntu One and the Ubuntu Shop (I mean Ubuntu Software Centre). Now if they could just find a way around the pesky GPL altogether and sign an agreement with Microsoft to port a closed source Microsoft Office, Shuttleworth would be even richer, and we could all go home.

All you Linux fanboys can get stuffed. If you are drawing lines in the sand and refusing to embrace the new ethos you need to get out of the way. You are too stuck in your ways. Now is the time to re-evaluate the whole notion of freedom and ask yourselves, "What has freedom ever done for me". Get out of the rut guys. Come and joint us in paradise.

Re:Why can't people just leave Canonical alone. (1)

keeboo (724305) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100698)

"What has freedom ever done for me"

Uh... Prevented me being locked out, differently from situations like when Commodore died and took Amiga with it, or when IBM decided to drop OS/2?
If you ever invested time to learn and to program for a now-dead OS/API/whatever, you would know how it feels to face a closed door when it dies.

Open source (5, Insightful)

nxsty (942984) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100582)

Greg DeKoenigsberg, an ex-Red Hat employee wrote a blog post slamming Canonical for the "absolutely egregious" statistic and suggesting that Canonical has been "riding on Red Hat's coattails for years." Tough shit. This is open source, if you don't like others using your work you should develop proprietary software instead.

Re:Open source (1)

arose (644256) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100934)

Not to mention that Red Hat has been riding on volunteer coattails for all of their existence by this logic. Hell, look at Fedora, it's volunteer packaging and testing for Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

If you want to pick on Canonical for something, pick on something that isn't an integral part of GNU/Linux distros.

Re:Open source (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101100)

But all that copying of the same bits, that puts a huge stress on them (especially the 1s). The bits that make up this open-source software could fail at any time, due to everyone using them. Think of the bits!

bah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100606)

Frankly, given canonical wanted retarded crap like unmanaged client windows doing their own border widgets (despite the huge advantage pluggable window managers have been to X11 desktops historically), I'm glad they're not contributing too much.

Cathedral versus Bazaar and evince (1)

Dennis Sheil (1706056) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100740)

The way this census was done, more weight seems to be given to a more cathedral way of looking at things (What company officially maintains a module? What commits come from e-mail addresses from that company?) then a bazaar way of doing things (Which company is getting good, automated bug reports from users? Which company has a decentralized, web 2.0 way of dealing with those bugs? What company's OS gets patches written for those bugs, often from its own users, or developers using their OS?)

I don't think Ubuntu got a fair shake compared to Red Hat. I usually use Red Hat in my work environments and Ubuntu and/or Debian at home. One of the packages in the bubble I am familiar with is evince. I look at the bug reports for evince for every distribution - Ubuntu, Debian, Red Hat, whatever. Most of the reports, and most of the good reports, come from Ubuntu. Honestly I think the census is really skewed - to me launchpad is one of the best places to see where regular users are having problems with the Gnome environment. It is where bugs caused by normal (and sometimes abnormal) operations by regular users comes to light the most when using the Gnome operating system, as far as I'm concerned. I always go to Ubuntu's launchpad first, and then check the other distribution's bug pages.

The module in the GNOME diagram I am most familiar with evince. Evince is the default GNOME PDF viewer. Now one problem with faulting the Ubuntu side for not contributing enough code to evince is that evince is fairly lightweight in terms of just itself. Most of the time when evince crashes, or fails to display a page correctly, or has some other error, it is almost never due to evince code, but in the code of libraries evince depends on. Primarily evince depends on the poppler library (a PDF rendering library), and poppler depends on the cairo library (a graphics library). Poppler is used by both GNOME and KDE. If an Ubuntu user complains evince is crashing for them, and a Canonical developer sees this is a poppler problem and sends a patch to poppler, Canonical would not be credited in the census. The way the census was done, this wouldn't count, although it is what Ubuntu does best in improving GNOME. Non-Canonical Ubuntu developers who use Launchpad improve GNOME as well, but this is not counted either in the census.

commits aren't sufficiently granular for comparing (2, Informative)

Artifex (18308) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100742)

You can commit on simple edits (like a ui typo change), or on adding a whole new chunk of code.
And, if you're busy, you might make both an edit and the addition in the same commit.

Is someone who makes five typo change commits doing five times the work of someone adding one with a new function?
I seriously doubt it.

RH == OSS Development, Canonical == OSS Marketing (1)

Dr.Syshalt (702491) | more than 4 years ago | (#33100898)

Yes, Canonical contributes much less lines of code. But any time you see someone asking for "the best Linux distro for starters" on any forum, you know what 80% of people suggest. Canonical brings newcomers to Linux, they helped a lot by bringing new users => new potential customers for RH and many others - those who make money from desktop Linux. Even if they do nothing but create media buzz and attract new converts, they already do a lot to the Linux ecosystem. Marketing means a lot - regardless of what beard-necks think about that. But still marketing isn't the only thing Canonical does - as others already mentioned.

Year of the Linux Desktop (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33100930)

Are we there yet?

Novell at more than 10%? Why? (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101042)

Suse Linux's default dextop is (a very nice) KDE. Why the heck to they spend so many resources on Gnome?

CentOS (1)

cjb658 (1235986) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101140)

One of the articles talks about Red Hat's claim that Ubuntu "has been riding their coattails for years."

I wonder how they feel about CentOS...

What matters is end user convenience (4, Interesting)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101144)

As a user, I don't care in the slightest who committed more patches, or lines of code.

What I do care about is how easy and convenient it is to use a particular distro. And there Ubuntu offers a lot. Try to play an MP3 file? Fail on Fedora out of the box; with Ubuntu, you get a dialog asking you if it's okay to download the codec - a single click, a brief wait, and it Just Works.

Or take drivers. As soon as it boots, Ubuntu prompts me to let it install proprietary NVidia drivers. A single click, and I have a 3D enabled system which actually works and has performance decent enough for gaming. Fedora? Either join the bug hunt with noveau, or search for a 3rd-party repository providing what you want.

Yeah, yeah, I know, Free Software is supposed to good for your karma, and friends don't let friends use proprietary crap. And Red Hat are your friends, right?..

... does anyone actually care?

Well, I guess some people do, and those people stick to Fedora. Judging by the amount of users it has compared to Ubuntu (and other distros who don't shove "FOSS only" into their users' throats), it's not as popular as some people would like it to be.

The linked blog post by an ex-RedHatter is dripping with venom over how Ubuntu "beats everyone at marketing", but totally misses the point. Ubuntu beats everyone at convenience and "just working" first and foremost; marketing is just icing on that cake. You want to make a principled stand over FOSS? Fine, but then don't complain when users flock elsewhere!

More numbers (2, Informative)

OneAhead (1495535) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101164)

Here's the original presentation of the gnome census. Most of the numbers discussed here come from slide 16 and 18.
http://www.slideshare.net/nearyd/gnome-census [slideshare.net]

I also don't agree with the claim that only 23.45% of contributions come from volunteers. There is also the 16.94% "unknown". Now, if you're working on Gnome for a company, you usually would want to list your affiliation. If you don't, maybe you're contributing to Gnome on company time without your bosses knowing, but such a situation should (arguably) be counted as "volunteer" work. But I speculate most of these unknowns are simply actual volunteers, who just skipped the question "which company do you work for", and didn't notice there was an option "none" (people usually are in a hurry when they fill in surveys). That would set an upper limit of 23.45%+16.94%=40.39% on the fraction of volunteers, and I feel the actual number is likely to be closer to this upper limit than to the lower limit (23.45%).

Commits per employee and per year ? (1)

Gouyoku (1624711) | more than 4 years ago | (#33101292)

Red Hat - 70790 commits [1]
Canonical - 4487 commits [1]

Red Hat - 3200 emplyees [2]
Canonical - 350 employees [3]

Red Hat - 1993 (we take GNOME - 1999) [2]
Canonical - 2004 [3]

Red Hat - 2.01 (commits / employee / year)
Canonical - 2.13 (commits / employee / year)

So you tell me - who is giving more to GNOME ?
The correct answer is: we don't know. If we take only one variable (commits), Red Hat is obviously in the lead. If we take two more variables (number of employees and years of contribution), Canonical takes the lead. Is it humanely possible to take into consideration every single variable out there ? I don't think so. So what are we quarrelling about ? Let's commit some code to GNOME instead.

[1] http://blogs.gnome.org/bolsh/2010/07/28/gnome-census/ [gnome.org]
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_hat [wikipedia.org]
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNOME [wikipedia.org]

Summary is wrong... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33101448)

According to the chart linked in the summary...

http://www.neary-consulting.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/gnome_participation.png [neary-consulting.com]

70.2% contribute in their spare time and
19.9% contribute in both their spare time and professionally

The summary said only 23% volunteers, it is actually over 90%. If they were referring to the raw volume of code, isn't that number likely a little skewed considering that 20% of the developers both volunteer and get paid meaning their contributions belong in the volunteer category since they'd be (and are still) contributing anyway?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?