Ubuntu 11.10 Will Be Dreamy

The naming of cats is a difficult matter

It isn’t just one of your holiday games.

- T S Eliot, The Naming of Cats

The announcement has been and the project name for the next Ubuntu release revealed as (drum roll) Oneiric Ocelot. Below our benevolent dictator for life, Mark Shuttleworth, explains what helped him choose the name but I imagine that will there will be a push to roll out more minor then major changes as it will also be about stabilising what we have for the 12.04 Long Term Release.

11.04 Natty Narwhal, due April 28th, has seen some significant changes to the desktop environment and the 'cleaning up' of the notification area (or system tray). I have been testing since December and it is currently in Alpha 3 though only play with it now if you can 'unbork' your system, or as Urban Dictionary defines alpha as:

Software undergoes alpha testing as a first step in getting user feedback. Alpha is Latin for "doesn't work."

So far I am very impressed with what I am seeing, Unity (the new user interface) makes much more sense on the desktop, and the inclusion of Banshee as the default media player is also a major plus, IMO! For now, I leave you with Mark Shuttleworth's reasoning behind Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot


Amplify’d from www.markshuttleworth.com

Oneiric means “dreamy”, and the combination with Ocelot reminds me of the way innovation happens: part daydream, part discipline.

We’ll need to keep up the pace of innovation on all fronts post-Natty. Our desktop has come together beautifully, and in the next release we’ll complete the cycle of making it available to all users, with a 2D experience to complement the OpenGL based Unity for those with the hardware to handle it. The introduction of Qt means we’ll be giving developers even more options for how they can produce interfaces that are both functional and aesthetically delightful.

In the cloud, we’ll have to tighten up and make some firm decisions about the platforms we can support for 12.04 LTS. UDS in Budapest will be full of feisty debate on that front, I’m sure, but I’m equally sure we can reach a pragmatic consensus and start to focus our energies on delivering the platform for widespread cloud computing on free and flexible terms.

Ubuntu is now shipping on millions of systems from multiple providers every year. It makes a real difference in the lives of millions, perhaps tens of millions, of people. As MPT said, “what we do is not only art, it’s performance art”. Every six months the curtains part, and we have to be ready for the performance. I’d like to thank the thousands of people who are actively participating in the production of Natty: take the initiative, take responsibility, take action, and your work will make a difference to all of those users. There are very few places in the world where a personal intellectual contribution can have that kind of impact. And very few places where we have such a strong social fabric around those intellectual challenges, too. We each do what we do for our own reasons, but it’s the global impact of Ubuntu which gives meaning to that action.

Natty is a stretch release: we set out to redefine the look and feel of the free desktop. We’ll need all the feedback we can get, so please test today’s daily, or A3, and file bug reports! Keep up the discipline and focus on the Narwhal, and let’s direct our daydreaming to the Ocelot.

Read more at www.markshuttleworth.com

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