Canonical's Steve George explains the move on the Canonical blog:
As part of the download process, you can choose to support any combination of the following areas:
- Make the desktop more amazing
- Performance optimisation for games and apps
- Improve hardware support on more PCs
- Phone and tablet versions of Ubuntu
- Community participation in Ubuntu development
- Better coordination with Debian and upstreams
- Better support for flavours like Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntuv
- Tip to Canonical—they help make it happen
Looking at the list, I'm wondering which of the options would be most popular among OSNews readers. I'm pretty sure the one about Debian and the other Ubuntu flavours would win out here, and I must admit that I personally would opt for more and better support for Kubuntu as well.
The biggest question is of course if you would support Ubuntu in the first place. After all, unlike a lot of other distributions, Canonical does have revenue streams, and Mark Shuttleworth isn't exactly strapped for cash either. This raises the question if Ubuntu deserves donations in the first place - there are loads of distributions and software projects that do more with less.
So, would you donate? How much? Which of the areas would you choose?