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Canonical Pulls Kubuntu Personnel Funding 356

LinuxScribe writes "An announcement on the Kubuntu-devel mailing list tells the sad story: Canonical is pulling funding for in-house developers to work on the KDE-based Kubuntu flavor. Canonical now seems committed to its single vision of a GNOME-based Unity as a desktop and other Ubuntu flavors will now have to rely on community support and some infrastructure from Canonical."
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Canonical Pulls Kubuntu Personnel Funding

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  • by astropirate ( 1470387 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:23AM (#38951327)
    As a Linux user, I think this is a great business move on the part of canonical.. It is very important that we have choice software... but for Linux to success, the companies backing need to have a focus.
  • Mint 12 KDE (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Rik Sweeney ( 471717 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:29AM (#38951363) Homepage

    Every time the subject of Ubuntu comes up on Slashdot I see a slew of comments complaining about how bad Unity is and what they've done to Gnome and how they're jumping ship for Mint I think "OK, so why not just use Kubuntu instead?", but now they've dropping funding for Kubuntu it looks like even more people will be moving over to Mint too.

    I only update to the LTS versions of Kubuntu but if Precise is going to be the last one then why bother? Mint 12 came out a few days ago so maybe I'll just move over to that instead.

  • by lordandmaker ( 960504 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:34AM (#38951413) Homepage

    I'm not really sure that Unity is a tablet UI. They've replaced a menu with a search box, do tablet UIs normally involve more typing and less pointing?

  • Re:Mint 12 KDE (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dargaud ( 518470 ) <> on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:37AM (#38951439) Homepage
    Yeah, I use kubuntu and set it up on every family member PC. It combines a standard UI (KDE) which isn't traumatic to ex-Windows users and the power of Ubuntu repositories. So I'm saddened by this news. I hope development keeps on.
  • Makes sense (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rapidreload ( 2476516 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:42AM (#38951467)

    It does make business sense to drop financial support for Kubuntu when you think about it. Ubuntu has been around for 7 years and Canonical still has yet to make a profit, so the purse strings undoubtedly have to be tightened so that the focus of attention can be put towards things that are more likely to succeed. It's not like they took Kubuntu seriously anyway - it was generally one of the least polished KDE distros available (though it has been getting better).

    Having said that I think Ubuntu is mostly doomed anyway - even with this new tablet/TV angle Shuttleworth wants to get into, the fact he hasn't managed to expand Ubuntu's marketshare via OEMs preinstalling it on machines (with some rare exceptions) kinda tells me he is either really optimistic or really stupid. Red Hat gave up on the desktop and, but then again Red Hat never had Unity and disappearing global menus. Yeah, I'm sure that's what's gonna fix things to make Linux more appealing for mainstream users. :)

  • by Captain Hook ( 923766 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:45AM (#38951475)
    typing on an onscreen keyboard is easier to find stuff vs multiple menus layers if you've got a low resolution screen with a finger sized pointer.

    In that context Unity is a perfectly acceptable UI for touch screen devices. Doesn't change the fact that it's a terrible interface for traditional keyboard/mouse input.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:45AM (#38951477)

    The New Ubuntu is becoming increasingly less flexible. In Lucid 10.04, you could place the gnome-panels anywhere you wished. You could add icons and and even short cuts to scripts to the panel, and there were a whole bunch of panel applets that you could add.

    Now, Ubuntu's new layout with a top panel and left launcher bar is so inflexible that you're stuck with what they give you. You could go with installing classic gnome shell, and/or install ccsm and turn unity off..... but if you do, look out, because when you copy files, don't even dare minimize the File Operations Dialogue, coz it will be gone forever. It;s almost as though Ubuntu punishes you for not using the Unity interface. Oh and forget mentioning this in any of their forums, because if you even imply that you don't like unity, prepare for some snooty feedback.

    But the engine below the interface is pretty fantastic. I fell in love with Ubuntu from Lucid, because everything worked, and it was so flexible and customizable, and that suited my indecisive personality... now things are very mac-like... where everything works perfectly, but sort of comes with a sticker saying, don't change it too much, coz it's perfect the way it is!!

  • Re:Does it matter? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:49AM (#38951501)

    I hear that. The version mish-mash in Debian following every KDE upstream release was atrocious - mind you, that was several years ago, as I too, eventually jumped ship to Kubuntu. Things were better there, but the overall lack of polish, probably stemming from KDE's relatively low priority in the the greater scheme of all things Ubuntu made me eventually leave for OpenSUSE. I'm still using it and it remains a very nice distro for KDE fans.

  • Re:Good (Score:3, Interesting)

    by captainpanic ( 1173915 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:51AM (#38951511)

    They already come out with a new version every 6 months. The two different desktop environments was not necessary. And it's not like KDE stops to exist now. It's just that the newbies who are clueless will face less options.

  • Re:Does it matter? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by boorack ( 1345877 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:58AM (#38951541)
    Heh, this is the exact reason I've switched in other direction: from Ubuntu to Debian. After two failed upgrades to 11.10 (both resulted in unbootable system that requires tweaking to bring it back and then left me without true-and-tested classic GNOME desktop, I've happily switched to Debian which now provides some of the best parts Ubuntu developed in recent years. Debian 6 reminds me Ubuntu 8.04 which IMO was the best Ubuntu distribution ever released (in terms of stability).
  • Re:Does it matter? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by pecosdave ( 536896 ) * on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @07:16AM (#38951647) Homepage Journal

    I used to use testing before I got pissed off and went stable - which they broke also. The "going stable cram" made using Debian testing a waste. Even if you did manage to keep ahead of the crap they were breaking left and right in testing the rush before stable when everyone rushes in their half-assed packages will break your setup for sure, and it even bleeds into stable on occasion.

    Really unless something has changed if I went back to Debian I would be very hesitant to do my security updates.

  • by jrminter ( 1123885 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @07:32AM (#38951743)
    Why not give Xubuntu a shot? Might be less of a headache. I just migrated to it from Mandriva.
  • by HyperQuantum ( 1032422 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @07:40AM (#38951797) Homepage

    Ubuntu: combining the inflexibility of Mac with the hardware support mess of Windows.

    Makes you wonder if this thing will ever get popular with mainstream users...

  • Re:Good (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Daniel Phillips ( 238627 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @07:43AM (#38951815)

    For me, Ubuntu stops existing right now. Oh the whole, I have had less breakage with Debian Sid, supposedly "unstable", and Canonical has just managed to push me over the tipping point: I'm going back to Debian (testing) on my primary machine as I should have done months ago. I am awfully tired of having to put up with Gnome bad idea of the week bogosity while waiting for Ubuntu to fix their broken, untested KDE packaging.

    It stopped being amusing a long time ago. There is one reason, and one reason only that there is Ubuntu on this workstation: it came that way. Henceforth, Ubuntu will just be a way to establish which drivers (if any) the OEM configured, then *wipe* *wipe* install, install, there we go, blessed relief, it's not a hobby project any more.

  • by ChaoticCoyote ( 195677 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @09:37AM (#38952637) Homepage

    Perusing this thread will tell anyone why Linux is not a significant player in the OS universe. Too much chaos, to many sharp opinions, jingoism... in the end, all that keeps Linux from being a serious contender beyond cell phones (where it is invisible) and scientists (who have certain needs).

    There will never *be* a "Year of Linux".

    Yet I'll keep on using customized versions of Linux for my own development needs, just like my wife uses odd and exotic materials media for her artwork. Linux/GNU/etc is an artist's tool, but it will never be mainstream or popular. Deal with it, be glad you have it, and quit bashing each other over the head.

  • Re:Wat (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Barbara, not Barbie ( 721478 ) <> on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @10:53AM (#38953685) Journal

    They broke even almost 3 years ago dude.

    Actually, no, they didn't. It says they were closing in on that point - and since then, they've lost the Dell OEM netbook market.

    The reason for the headcount is financial. If they were profitable, there'd really be no reason to cut one of the distro and help stem the flow of people abandoning Ubuntu. The fact is that every product they've announced since that article has been a dud - their music store (turns out it's not even theirs), their initial cloud offering (again not theirs - just a rebandged Amazon deal), the android execution environment (abandoned), tablets (abandoned), cell phones (abandoned), and the latest fiasco - UbuntuTV (code ripped from that anyone can use to install any linux distro on samsung tvs) - announced at the same show where Lenovo was showing off 55" Android Ice Cream Sandwich TVs with facial and speech recognition, remote with motion and multi-touch sensors, etc.

    Expect more cuts.

10.0 times 0.1 is hardly ever 1.0.