Canonical Working to Put Ubuntu on the ‘App Development Map’
Ubuntu may be marketed as “Linux for human beings,” but Canonical is working hard to make it the open source platform of choice for app developers as well. And it’s now calling on those who fall into the latter category to offer feedback on how Ubuntu can better meet their needs. Read on for details.
I’ve always interpreted Ubuntu’s “Linux for human beings” mantra to mean that the operating system was built first and foremost to be friendly for non-geeks. To a remarkable extent, Ubuntu has succeeded in that vein, distinguishing itself as the most popular and one of the simplest Linux distributions for desktop users.
But appealing to non-geeks and catering to developers aren’t mutually exclusive goals. On the contrary, they can complement one another, as Canonical has endeavored to prove by building what Canonical employee David Planella — in a recent blog post about putting Ubuntu on the “app development map” — called an “ecosystem of resources and projects” designed to help developers create applications and deliver them to end users.
Canonical’s efforts to make Ubuntu a great platform for application developers have included:
- The Ubuntu Software Center, a centralized location for distributing applications, both free-of-charge and for-purchase, to users. It also serves as a means of collecting feedback on software from end users’ perspectives.
- The developer.ubuntu.com portal of the Ubuntu website, which provides easy access to Canonical’s various developer-oriented resources.
- Launching the MyApps portal to help ISVs distribute their software via Ubuntu channels.
- A survey for developers of various backgrounds, which Planella announced on his blog, intended to figure out what they’d like to see more of in the Ubuntu ecosystem. The survey will be up until Aug. 19, 2011.
Clearly, Canonical envisions close partnerships with developers as key to Ubuntu’s — and Canonical’s — long-term viability. Pleasing end users with software borrowed from upstream projects from other realms of the open source channel isn’t enough.