Finally someone is doing Ubuntu Linux usability testing with a girlfriend. The new user was given a couple of common tasks over a default installation of Ubuntu. I hope, the Linux distributions can learn a lot from this article and improve Linux user experience on a desktop computer. From the post:
Erin's knowledge of computers is limited to word processors, spreadsheets, Photoshop and a reasonable amount of browsing on the Web. Fairly standard stuff for a university philosophy student. All I did to the system (before leaving Erin at the log-in screen) was to install it and create a user account for her. She had no problems logging in, and loved the stylised heron background. Then I gave her one by one the tasks I'd set her. I didn’t give her any help at all.
=> The Great Ubuntu-Girlfriend Experiment (via slashdot)
You can install latest Ubuntu Linux 8.04 under Windows Vista / XP without creating a new parition with a new tool called Wubi. It is a Ubuntu installer for Windows users that will bring you into the Linux world with a single click. Wubi allows you to install and uninstall Ubuntu easily. This blog post covers basic installation:
With the latest release of the popular Linux-based operating system, Ubuntu Hardy Heron, the installation process just got easier for Windows users who wish to try out an alternative to Vista or XP. Even .NET developers who are looking out on trying the Mono project (the .NET platform for Linux-based operating systems) can benefit from it. All this is possible thanks to a little Windows utility called Wubi, which is an installer for Ubuntu.
Red Hat and Novell decided not to challenge Microsoft on desktop PCs. However, Canonical Ltd is getting ready to release a new version of Ubuntu on Thursday. According to Mark Shuttleworth:
The public perception of open source software is changing fast. French police force was currently deploying 50,000 Ubuntu-powered machines, while Spanish education authorities were rolling out 500,000 desktops with the OS. Hardy Heron also has improved support for multimedia, including photo editing, music sharing and video playback. It's a favorite version of Linux both for specialists and one that specialists would recommend to a cousin, aunt or uncle who want to have a stable desktop internet experience. There are other versions of Linux that are better for a particular purpose - but Ubuntu strives to be a general platform that is secure and self-maintained.
Ubuntu 'reaping Linux dividend'