posted by Kroc Camen on Thu 1st Oct 2009 21:02 UTC
IconWe reported earlier on a blog post entitled "Ubuntu Report Card (2009)" where the author detailed how they felt the Ubuntu experience had improved over the years. In a follow-up series of articles looking at the future, Tanner Helland has written 10 different broadly-scoped feature requests that [he] 'and many others would like to see by the time Ubuntu 10.10 rolls around'.

Whilst some of these are more than purely ‘feature requests’ as they cover relationship and management issues, they are nevertheless important to the success of Ubuntu. Here’s how the 10 days break down:

Day 1 – A Great Package Management (Add/Remove Software) Experience
Interestingly Tanner asks that the “store” moniker actually be dropped in Ubuntu’s plans to make a new UI on top of the package manager to make adding and removing software easier. Tanner argues that because the ‘store’ will be doing a whole lot more than just selling software (updates + patches, upgrades, drivers, codecs and more) and most software will be free, calling it a ‘store’ would be confusing and ill-informative to users.
Day 2 – A Music Player That Doesn’t Suck
Whilst there’s plenty of variety in the Linux scene as far as music players, they are rather narrow and lack the kind of features and usability that Windows migrants expect with iTunes. "New users should be given a great default option, because not everyone wants to try out 15-20 possible music players just to settle on one that doesn’t do half of what iTunes does."
Day 3 – Improved Visual Aesthetics

Take a look at Apple’s “Get a Mac” frontpage. What’s the first line?

“It’s gorgeous. Inside and out.”

Could the same be said of Ubuntu? Not with a straight face.

Day 4 – Real Wine Integration
Tanner proposes a simple way in which Ubuntu could offer a smoother, more integrated experience with WINE to help Windows migrants to better acclimatise.
Day 5 – Solid, Functional Video Editing
Tanner weighs in on the video editing situation with Linux and overviews five different specific video editors.
Day 6 – Simple, Reliable, Integrated Backup Tool
Ubuntu does not ship with any GUI backup tools and backup in general is a sore spot compared to Windows and Mac. Where is Time Machine for Linux?
Day 7 – Mend Key Relationships
As part of a larger ecosystem, Ubuntu has to interact with a large amount community, some of which are at odds with the distro.
Day 8 – Better Online Video Experience
HTML5 video needs evangelism, Linux cannot rely on Adobe to solve the Flash problem soon enough (I’ve personally found the HTML5 video tag to be less reliable on Linux than it is on other platforms, which really doesn’t help the problem). That said, there’s still room for improvement with Gnash and Swfdec
Day 9 – Renewed Focus on Marketing
Personally I think there is a lot more to marketing than Tanner makes it out to be—very few people even know what a “browser” is, telling them you have one for free isn’t all that effective if they still don’t know what it is they’re getting for free; and “Ubuntu” could be hair-cream for all it sounds like to consumers.
Day 10 – Paper Cuts, Paper Cuts, Paper Cuts
The biggy, the one that matters. Really, it’s the little things that makes OS X so good, and Ubuntu should follow suit. I’m in full agreement here. The paper-cuts project will make-or-break Ubuntu in the long run.
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