The next red-letter day for Ubuntu fans will be April 24, when Ubuntu 8.04 LTS (Long Term Support) arrives. Mark Shuttleworth, the CEO of Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu, guarantees that the next version of the popular Linux distribution will make it on time, with something for enterprise, desktop, and Internet users.
In an interview, Shuttleworth made the point that, while many executives have yet to realize it, “Open source software projects and Linux distros are actually better than proprietary companies at hitting deadlines.” In particular, Shuttleworth says, “Companies are now comparing Linux with Vista, and it’s clear that’s Linux does a better job of meeting people’s expectations.
“When you look at people’s expectations, proprietary software gives the impression that its makers can deliver on time. It’s top-down, it’s how people think businesses should work, but bottom-up innovation actually is more timely. This is a real credit for free software, and it’s also a real challenge for the proprietary guys to meet.” Nowadays, it’s “very difficult to know when proprietary software and operating systems will be out.”