10 things I'd like in Ubuntu 10.10

As many of you will know, Ubuntu 10.04 was released 2 months ago, and the Ubuntu Developer Summit is currently underway.

There are loads of cool new features in development for 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) and I thought I would put my 10 ideas that I’d like to happen in the next version. (And, unlike my blog’s name, that 10 is in base ten).

Note: to all those people who use kubuntu, or xubuntu etc…I am currently only talking about Ubuntu because that is what I use.

There was a lot of work towards huge speed increases for the last few versions of Ubuntu, but it seems to have stalled in this version. “10 seconds” was the number that was thrown around a lot for Lucid, but my desktop (and its not exactly slow) currently starts up in about 30 seconds. Apart from me buying an SSD or using Sata 6G, theres not much I can do to make it faster other than Ubuntu getting faster, so I’m not saying its a very slow startup, but it’s not what we were told it was going to get down to.

Well, it turns out that this is actually happening. It was announced half-way through me writing this actual section. In my opinion, f-spot is a clunky piece of software that really doesn’t work the way a piece of software included in the default base of Ubuntu should. And luckily, the people over at Ubuntu have heard my (and many other peoples) cries. Enter Shotwell. It is exactly what f-spot should be (a photo manager with basic rotate, crop, red-eye reduction etc) without any of the crashing, the mono or the corrupting or reorganising photos that f-spot seems to be plagued with. I agree that GIMP isn’t really needed in the default install, but we needed something exactly like this.

Don’t get me wrong, pitivi is not a bad piece of software, and I totally agree we need a video editor in the default install. It is a great selling point, however I think that OpenShot is possibly the BEST video editor out there. And yes, I do mean even with professional ones like Premier etc… I do understand that this probably will not happen, as it isn’t a gtk based app and doesn’t fit in well in the desktop, and its still under heavy development, but I think it would be an amazing addition to Ubuntu.

I don’t really want them up the top right. That is all…

This one is also in development. It is going to be included by default on UNE I believe, and hopefully will be installable on Desktop and stuff, and it will work in gnome, kde, and other DEs and they are working on patching apps that can’t currently handle it. If you have ever used gnome-globalmenu, you’ll know how annoying it is that firefox doesn’t work with it, well they are working on that, and EVEN working on qt apps. It’s going to be great! It is one of the few things I think are nice in osX.

I think it is quite messy just now. Loads of screens to set it up. I think that it could be simplified quite a lot. Lets take the first 2 screens…choosing language and then choosing keyboard layout. These could easily be incorporated into 1 screen, already saving 1 screen. Apart from that, a lot of the options could be hidden. I haven’t fully thought about this, and if I ever get around to it (if I can be bothered), I’ll do some ideas of what I think it should look like.

This is another one of my great ideas where I think that it would be a cool thing, but never fully think it through. I know there are some things similar to a “settings centre” type thing, like I think there is one in Mint etc, but what I’d like is a pluggable system that looks similar to the osX one. I want it to be really simple to integrate any settings app that you make into the Settings Centre, and if you have it installed, when you install a new settings app, it integrates into it straight away. I would love to draw up some ideas for it, and I will if I have time.

Nothing much to be said here. They exist…give me them please :-)

Totem is terrible, horrible, ugly and VLC is just so much better

Basically, I want a screen that comes up when booting my system that asks me for my encryption password, and then uses that to also unlock my keyring (for wireless, gwibber, gnome-do etc). I know this isn’t the best security, but lets be honest…if it is fully encrypted and someone knows my encryption password, I’m stuffed anyway. It doesn’t make a huge difference that they can then get my wireless keys and my identi.ca password. But I want this to be as easy to set up as it is to encrypt your home directory. Just another checkbox. Obviously, by default these passwords shouldn’t be all the same, but it should be possible to really easily do it. I’m lazy…what can I say? I turn my computer on, go for a shower, and expect gwibber to have updated everything by the time I get back. And if the encryption password is asked right at the beginning, this means I have to wait for my BIOS and then I can go away and it’ll start totally up.

**UPDATE** My 11th request.

I would love granola to be included by default. It would be an amazing thing to have an operating system that can save power when you aren’t using it (currently mine is saving 47%).