Kubuntu Community Update

Categories: Linux
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Comments: 14 Comments
Published on: May 28, 2012

I know that it has been a while since I have made any updates to you guys.

Earlier this month, developer Jonathan Riddle and I were both at UDS (Ubuntu
Developer Summit) and during that time we had a meeting with Canonical about
the trademark. While not all of the paperwork is signed or finalized just yet,
I wanted to update everyone on what happened and where we are at in this
Trademark thing.

For starters, I know that there has been a lot of talk about changing the name
of Kubuntu. As of right now there are no plans to change the name. Any name
change talks were to prepare for a worst case scenario. Seeing how well the
talks went with Canonical, I cannot see any reasons we would change our name.

Another thing I want address and make very clear is the role Blue Systems is
playing in Kubuntu.

Blue Systems is a small company that is paying people to develop key pieces of
the KDE ecosphere. This means that their role is a monetary role. They are
helping to sponsor the development of Kubuntu with the hiring of Jonathan
Riddell. Kubuntu is still sponsored by Canonical as well.

Now I can hear everyone now, “But didn’t they drop sponsorship of Kubuntu that
started this whole thing?”

Sort of.

What Canonical dropped was COMMERCIAL support of Kubuntu. This means that
companies can no longer buy paid support from Canonical for Kubuntu. It means
that Jonathan Riddell was going to be reassigned within the Desktop Team at
Canonical. And lastly, it means that Canonical will no longer be making Swag
or Pressed CDs for Kubuntu.

Canonical still pays for a lot in Kubuntu. The hosting of code and providing
the infastructer that we have, provides the iso spinning services, QA tools,
sponsorships to UDS, Trakemark fees for 33 countries for the name Kubuntu (not
just under the *buntu protection but, full on Kubuntu) and lastly, the legal
protection for all of this.

So as you can see, our relationship has not chnaged all that much within the
Kubuntu/Canonical relations. Yes, there has been some changes but, there are
benifits to the changing as well and I firmly believe that the benifits
greatly outweigh anything else.

There are talks about Kubuntu being able to create a non profit foundation to
become a legal entity. This will allow the Kubuntu council to push Kubuntu to
new heighths and also allow us to do a few very important things. it will
allow us to build a Kubuntu store and it will also allow us to take donations,
money to be placed in a budget and receive finactial support.

From a developers view, we are moving from the main repositories and into
universe. This will give us more freedom of what we can include into our

Overall, I think we can all see how much better and stronger we can be when
this is all said and done. Working together, I am beyond confident that not
only can we make Kubuntu the best KDE distro on the planet but, we can put
Kubuntu on the map in very large ways.

Another amazing thing that happened is that Kubuntu was given an HUGE
opportunity to push Kubuntu Active (KDE Plasma Active for tablet) onto actual
tablet hardware.

ZaReason is a company here in the US that builds and ships computers with
Linux, Ubuntu and distros, preinstalled. Later this year, they will be selling
the ZaTab. It’s a tablet with the same size and feel of the iPad2. It already
will be shipping with CyanogenMod 9 on it. Well, we were given a couple of
these tablets to development reasons so that we can also give them the option
to ship Kubuntu Active 12.10 on them at the end of the year. This is very very
exciting for us as it moves us ahead in the tablet ready distros.

If you have any questions please, feel free to ask them.

Cheers all!

  1. BJS says:

    Very good news, and Kubuntu Active will be a must. Good luck.

  2. > As of right now there are plans to change the name.

    Presumably that’s missing a “no”.

    Also “msin” and “inti”.

  3. FLul says:

    Still no real informations how Blue Systems earns money?

    I’m wondering how you can lay the future of Kubuntu in a company nobody knows anything real about.

    Why do they spend money on KDE & Kubuntu? Just for fun??

    • Darkwing says:

      The future of Kubuntu does not lay with any company. It is a community maintained distro. Just because a separate company pays a developer does not mean in any way that Kubuntu is run by Blue Systems. Kubuntu is only run by the community.

      • Flup says:

        Ok then take this sentence out.

        My 2 questions are still remaining..

      • Joe Wakeling says:

        The problem isn’t whether Kubuntu will or will not continue to be a community-maintained distro, or how large Blue Systems’ role will be. The problem is that people have been asking questions about Blue Systems for some time now, and answers have been promised but not given: we still have not been told who Blue Systems are or what their actual business/revenue sources are. In that context, remarks about how small their actual role will be are not reassuring — these look like excuses for not answering the still-open questions people have.

        This is daft, because I’m sure that there is actually nothing to hide. But the ongoing lack of response to these key questions makes it look as if there is.

        So, please, let’s have quick answers to the question of who Blue Systems are, what is their company history and what their business activities and revenue sources are. These should not be difficult to provide.

        • ScottK says:

          I don’t understand why people think they have some right to force a private company with whom they have no relationship to disclose more than they care to. My advice is MYOB.

          • Joe Wakeling says:

            No one’s claiming a right to force anyone to do anything. But it’s reasonable to request information about a company that is taking on an important stake in a community project that we all value. This isn’t private or commercially sensitive info but is the kind of stuff that you would expect to be publicly available.

            But to be honest my remarks weren’t directed at Blue Systems but at David. Several people have asked, several times, for information about who Blue Systems are and where there money comes from. David said that he would follow up on this, but those questions have still not been answered, even though they keep being asked. It’s not necessarily a problem if those questions won’t be answered, but it should be confirmed that this is so.

          • Joe Wakeling says:

            … where their money comes from … (rolls eyes)

    • Joe Wakeling says:

      Just to update, an answer has been given here:

      As expected, it all looks completely fine — I still don’t understand the silliness of this blog promising answers and then not following up.

  4. Since Plasma Active 3 is roughly pointed for a release in October, the plans for Kubuntu Active 12.10 are to ship Active 2 or 3?
    Is ZaTab ARM?
    Is Kubuntu Active 12.10 going to be able to run on ARM?

  5. Charles says:

    Yes, I have read your article. But how are things going to become? Is Kubuntu going to change the name? Will it end? Please tell me what is happening as in now…

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