The Ubuntu Touch smartphone OS has come a long way, but it still has further to plod before it's ready for market - all Canonical will tell us that it hopes to see an Ubuntu phone before the end of this year.
Nevertheless, now that some phone manufacturers are on board with the project, we've been able to play with a couple of prototypes: One was just a non-functioning handset from a Spanish company called BQ, showing off plain but solid build quality reflective of a mid-tier device.
I've been preaching the gospel of Linux security for decades now, but it's always nice to see proof-positive from an independent organization that Linux is indeed the most secure operating system around.
The Communications-Electronics Security Group (CESG), the group within the UK Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) that assesses operating systems and software for security issues, has found that while no end-user operating system is as secure as they'd like it to be, Ubuntu 12.04 is the best of the lot.
History is written years after the events it describes. But when the history of free software finally is written, I am increasingly convinced that this last year will be noted as the start of the decline of Ubuntu.
At first, the idea might seem ridiculous or spiteful. You can still find Ubuntu enthusiasts who exclaim over every move the distribution makes, and journalists still report founder Mark Shuttleworth's every word uncritically.
Of all the possible future of computing devices, one that seems so appealing—superficially, at least—is a single converged gadget that does it all. A pocketable thing that gives you computing and Internet connectivity when you're out and about, but it's equally capable of driving a big-screen monitor, mouse, and keyboard when you're sitting at a desk doing some work, watching streaming media, or playing a game on your TV.
Canonical , Ubuntu's parent company, made a bet. It wagered that there were enough visionaries out there to crowd-source 32-million dollars for the first Linux-powered combination smartphone/PC, the Ubuntu Edge. It seems that the company will lose that wager, but in the long-run, I think Canonical will rise from the gadget gaming table a winner.