Thursday, May 10, 2007

Vive le printemps! (about Spring, Mandriva and the Community)

Mandriva Linux 2007 Spring is now released for a few weeks. The 2007 Spring is probably one of the best Mandriva Linux release in years and I want to thank all the teams, and also particularly all the cooker contributors, who have worked for long months on this project.

The distribution is solid and has greatly benefited from the additional 2 weeks of tests we put into polishing the result. And it shows: reviews are good and sales are solid.

We are now taking a short break before the next run: Mandriva Linux 2008. But during this break, we are making several changes in preparation for the next release.

First, I'm reorganizing the teams in the Engineering, promoting Anne Nicolas as Engineering Director. Anne was previously leading the Corporate team. She brings not only strong professionalism, but also a clear community minded approach. She will involve all the engineers in the Brazilian team, who can now play a central role in building the distribution. She will be in charge of the development of all the Mandriva Linux releases.

Second, Anne is working with the teams to draft the technical roadmap for the 2008 release. This roadmap will also contain a set of guidelines for contributors work. This is the starting point for discussing and adopting requirements expressed by the Cooker community.

Third, Anne will organize the work and enhance the Mandriva policy for contributors.

Mandriva is proud and honored to have one of the oldest free software community for distribution editors, one of the largest and one of the most open, with key contributors working on many of the core modules of the release. Anne will ensure that this ecosystem continues to grow, opens even more, and also that interactions are better formalized without breaking the fun in the game ;)

On this occasion, I'm proposing a further step and wish that the next Free Software version of Mandriva Linux be made directly by a member of the community.

Last, build platform improvements will also be resumed now that the release is out. Phase 1 was about stabilizing things, so let's head for Phase 2 and implement some much needed changes!

In short, some changes and a lot of new exciting work, so: Vive le Printemps!

(Note: this message has also been cross-posted to the cooker mailing list)

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Flash controversy

By now, you should probably have heard about our new product: Mandriva Flash.

However, what you might ignore, is that inside the company this product is surrounded by a lot of controversy.

Some feel it doesn't have a place among the golden Mandriva Discovery/PowerPack/PowerPack+, whose orthodoxy is undisputable and which we should praise like a sacred cow. Other see it as a small product, rushed out by accident while the opposing camp stands that it was eclipsed by the 2007 launch date. Some don't really care about it. These controversies are kind of a common pattern before each product launch: i've almost become used to it. Except, that this time I just don't want to sit down and listen.

In particular, I strongly disagree with Blino's post about it. According to him, Flash would be a key loaded with some piece of software. This is particularly shocking to hear from the main developer of the product!

Don't try to underestimate the Flash: it brings you a lot more than that.

Sure, you probably already know about Linux, so what's the use of Flash for you? As a gift of course! Because, you feel so much about Linux that you want to share it with your friends. Now you can offer Linux to the one you love. The device is a hit for the holiday season and you can put it under the Christmas tree. And even if your friends don't like it, it still is a high-quality 2Gb key (ok Blino, you had this one right...)

But wait! Even if your loved one doesn't care about Linux, there is still one you love for sure. That's you, right in front of the screen! ;-) Rather selfish, and even worse, I bet you'll love to push it even further by showing pride and spreading envy with your very own mobile 3D desktop Linux on a key. Months ahead of Bill's monstruous armies, and with already more clever and fancier effects than the other fruity OS, you can demonstrate it on everyone's desktop and prove the world that you really are a smart guy. So: impress your friends with the Linux 3D desktop!

Pff. With all this I almost forgot to tell you about other niceties like the ability to have your home, bookmarks, cookies & preferences on the key, theauto-connect feature that almost immediatly connects you to the Internet, the built-in exchange partition to swap files with less gifted friends, the famous auto-detection that allows you to boot almost everywhere. All this thanks to the Mandriva Linux 2007 base system, and the live system technologies.

Last but not least, it's fast! Of course it is: what do you expect with a name like this? It will be fast to help you discover Linux, or help your friends discover Linux... This is one of the first objectives we have with this key: make Linux succeed on a large scale. And this is just the continuation of our very reason to exist, the reason the company was incorporated for in the first place.

This leads me to stress out how this product sets us apart from our esteemed competitors: Mandriva is a product company. And is thus one of the many reasons why Mandriva will not fallback to being just the next Ubuntu.

Stay tuned to our Mandriva-is-just-not-the-next-Ubuntu series. Next time, I'll tell you why we won't release yet another 3D desktop...

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Should Mandriva be the next Ubuntu?

I've been reading this editorial on Linux Tech Daily with great interest, and of course a little pride for the work achieved by the team.

The author explains why he feels our latest Mandriva Linux 2007 marks the comeback of Mandriva as one of the best provider of Linux distribution. Notably, he mentions is nice experience with the Mandriva One edition and the 3D desktop working out of the box.

We have received excellent reviews for the release of Mandriva Linux 2007. It is conforting to see that we have made the right choices, that we have found the good balance between new technologies, ease of use and finish. I like to think that our resident DJ Warly found the right mix' for this edition... Of course, Hélène's Ia Ora" theme also adds a nice "french touch" to this hit! ;)

But what I feel most important and significant is what turned the author's initial, and quite irrational, "displeasure" into a true appreciation of our work. Namely: a good product made by a team dedicated to both customers and free software enthusiasts.

Of course, we have a lot of improvements to provide to our offering, as mentioned in the article, and I think this mostly reflects the priorities we have internaly.
Now, should we become the next Ubuntu!? Whatever that means, I think we should probably not. For there are many differences in the goals as well as the history of the two projects. Yet, I do consider it as a kind compliment, so thanks Eduard!

Friday, September 29, 2006

It's been official for a few days. Then it was stopped for a last check, then it has been restarted again. And now, it's almost there: the new Mandriva Linux 2007.

This new golden sparkling release will be on your screen at the beginning of next week while the torrents are being provisioned And if you are part of the Mandriva Club you can even get it a little earlier.

There is a lot of exciting new things with Mandriva Linux 2007. And I'm particularly happy to be using it as I type... Stay tuned!