Canonical partners with AMI, Dell & Intel

Canonical, Ubuntu Linux's parent company is meeting with engineers and product managers from many top device and computer manufacturers in Taipei, Taiwan on September 24, 2010.

The commercial sponsor of Ubuntu will be hosting its second annual Original Design Manufacturers (ODMs) and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) at the Ubuntu Hardware Summit. Companies confirmed as attending include: American Megatrends Inc. (AMI), Phoenix, Compal, Dell, Foxconn, Intel, MSI, Marvell, and Quanta. In other words many of the leading PC, laptop, and tablet players will be there to learn about how to work with Ubuntu on boot time optimizations, hardware enablement, debugging, multi-touch, networking and more.

Why are they coming? I think it's safe to say these companies wouldn't be showing up if they weren't interested in learning how to pre-install and deploy Ubuntu Linux on their devices.

Jon Melamut, VP of sales and product management, OEM Services at Canonical, said, "ODMs and OEMs know Ubuntu, and many are already shipping it pre-installed on computers. UHS is a forum to learn the latest techniques for working with Ubuntu and getting devices to market faster and more efficiently. In our second year, we are seeing a huge response in planned attendance from the biggest names in the industry. It's becoming a must-attend event."

Leo Chen, senior software manager at Quanta Computers, one of the world's largest laptop OEMs and makers of notebooks for Apple, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Sony among others, agreed with Melamut. "The Ubuntu Hardware Summit provides an opportunity to understand what's really happening within Canonical and with the Ubuntu development process. When we attended the inaugural UHS last year, it was a big help to our device design and deployment."

Specifically, Canonical will be making technical presentations an overview of multi-touch support in Ubuntu, covering kernel drivers, the X input stack, and applications. There will also be a session on the uTouch gesture suite.

UTouch, which will make its first appearance in Ubuntu 10.10, is meant to go beyond standard touch frameworks by enabling users to chain a series of gestures into a sophisticated series of commands. These are called "gesture sentences." The idea is to make it possible for Ubuntu tablet and netbook users do more with their devices even with a small, or without any, traditional mouse and keyboard at hand.

There will also be a program on the best practices to use with BIOS and Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) to ensure an OEM's firmware works well with Linux. Needless to say, there will also be a session on how OEMs and ODMs can work more efficiently with Canonical to build successful Ubuntu-based devices.

For users, what this tells me is that in 2011, you can look forward to seeing a lot more devices that come with Ubuntu ready to go inside them.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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