How will unpaid Ubuntu devs be further motivated?

Story: Ubuntu Linux developer squabbles go publicTotal Replies: 0
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Mar 11, 2013
10:38 PM EDT
SJVN writes about Shuttleworth addressing a Ubuntu developer's concerns:
Quoting:In particular, he [Shuttleworth] singled out Ben Collins, an Ubuntu developer for the PowerPC processor, who worries that rolling releases might "leave us with no stable Linux distribution for our hardware, basically yanking the rug out from under all of our work."

To this concern, Shuttleworth replied, "Ben is a friend and former colleague; I’d like to be supportive, but the real cost of supporting an architecture is way outside the scope of Ubuntu’s non-commercial commitments. IBM and Canonical discussed bringing Ubuntu to the PowerPC architecture some years ago and chose not to; the gap is not something Canonical will close alone. I’m delighted if Ubuntu is useful for Ben, and pretty certain it will remain the best platform for his work regardless, but we should not spend millions of dollars on that rather than cloud computing or mobile, which have a much broader impact on both society and our commercial prospects."

Plausible results of Shuttleworth's statements and actions are:

1. Ubuntu developers who refuse to advance their work into cloud computing or mobile will simply be no longer as well-supported financially by Canonical Inc.... or else they will be unsupported (i.e., completely cut-off.)

2. Such unpaid Ubuntu developers -- who have no intention of contributing to Canonical's commercial prospects without gleaning some sort of meaningful recognition or gain for their work ("street cred" from peers? elevated titles?) -- will no doubt certainly undergo various degrees of soulsearching to evaluate if and/or when they should jump ship. The best of these developers could very well remain unswayed by Canonical Inc's lip-service praise and the company's attempts to titillate such devs by throwing them the "desktop dogbones" of GNOME and Kylin (see the recent LXer post GNOME and Kylin become official Ubuntu flavours).

3. Some LXer readers may still recall the infamous 'Developers' rally-cry of Microsoft's Steve Ballmer from many years back, still viewable at . Canonical CEO Shuttleworth is more subtle than Ballmer, but the Canonical CEO's latest responses could surprisingly be considered a type of reverse developers "rallying statement", as discussed in the LXer thread 'If you don't like it then get lost' found at http://lxe Current Ubuntu developers such as the above may more clearly get the hint from the latter's "developers statement" than from any rally cries similar to Ballmer's.

4. A certain number of these disillusioned and unmotivated Ubuntu developers may just defect to The Next Big Cool Thing (other than Ubuntu that is).... or they may even gravitate back to working on the impending release of parent distro Debian where their voluntary efforts will CERTAINLY show up most clearly! From, there are apparently numerous release-critical bugs that are preventing Debian Wheezy from becoming the next Stable version, 7.0. And Canonical Inc. may indeed find it increasingly less worthwhile to devote significant resources to assist fixing these upstream bugs, especially when such "fixes" minimally affect its own bottom-line.

So the question will perforce linger around; How can Canonical further motivate the legions of highly-talented but voluntary Ubuntu developers ??

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