Yesterday, after evangelizing Ubuntu for years and running Ubuntu on my parents desktop since 2009, I finally “relieved” them by giving them Windows 7 as a gift.
For years I had the hope that every Ubuntu release would get better than the previous edition. That the vision of Canonical aligned with my vision of openness and where user rights are put central. I took the fact that some proprietary things didn’t work for granted and thought we could fight it best by adding weight to the open source movement and use open source software while demanding open codecs, standards etc.
I praised Unity, and really think this is a bold and strong move in the right direction that has to be taken in order to realize the ambitious goals Ubuntu has set for the open desktop. Harder it was to cope with software that used to work, but broke in a new release. E.g. it’s really frustrating if your webcam always worked with Skype but suddenly after an upgrade it doesn’t (and release after release, a year later, it still isn’t fixed ), or if you can’t do simple things like red eye removal, because the new version of the software you are using is broken.
My parents often encountered these seemingly little problems that completely put a halt on the things they wanted and were used to do. Regressions are much more irritating than bugs on new sofware. Since the news of sending search terms to Amazon by default I’m through with it. No longer do I feel Canonical puts my rights and liberties as a user central. No longer can I pull energy from the hope that the next release will be better. We don’t move in the same direction anymore.