December 18, 2009

Friday Kool Site of the Week: Linux Mint Community Website Launched

Recently it was announced over at that a new Linux Mint domain was being launched. Currently listed as "Alpha" status, is a website by and for the greater Linux Mint Community. This, of course, includes users like us here at The Blue Mint of Linux Mint KDE. And hopefully you as well.

The goals and features of the Community Website are listed as:

* Have ideas to improve Linux Mint, comment and rate other people’s ideas (similar to a light version of “Brainstorm”)
* Register your hardware devices, find people with the same hardware as you and if it doesn’t work for you and it worked for them, see how they got their hardware to work with Linux Mint.
* Browse, rate and install software (what’s currently called “Software Portal”)
* Suggest new software
* Ask questions, answer other people’s questions, thank those who helped..etc
* Have your own mini-blog, subscribe to other people’s blogs, comment and rate articles.
* Same with tutorials.
* Message each others via an email/PM-like system
* Add other people as friends for quick access to their activities/data/profile
This is a great idea, and one that was sorely needed as it potentially creates a more accessible side of both Linux Mint as an entity and Linux Mint the community.

Note that, since this is considered Alpha at present, there may be a limit to the amount of registrations the website takes on at a particular time. This is expected, of course and the site will open up to more users as time goes by. Also note that by signing up, you are encouraged to discuss the Community site via the Linux Mint Forums via the section here.

An interesting goal of the community site is to be as social as possible and make sharing ideas and information easy. I like this direction. The more personal you can make something, the more people feel a part of it, and the more they get involved and feel like they are truly a part of something vibrant and alive. This is something that just can not usually be felt through traditional communication methods that have been the stalwarts of the open source communities for years - i.e. forums. 

Showing your KDE love on

One of the beneficial and interesting aspects of the new site is a real way to measure statistics of the Linux Mint Community and the software they use. Upon succesful registration, you put a few demographical items in your profile such as country of residence, Linux Mint version, and Linux Mint edition.

If the early statistics from the site are any indication, we've got a looooooong way to go here at The Blue Mint! A quick look reveals that only 5 percent (actually slightly less) of registered users use the KDE Edition - 9/186 at present. 

I must admit that although I knew most Mint users would use the default Main Edition, I was taken aback by this lowly number. Of course, in 2010 (est), many people run the KDE Plasma Desktop on the Main Edition, and any combination of editions and desktops can be used. However, this is a telling stat. I'd be curious to know our reader's thoughts on reasons that contribute to this. On the plus side, there is clearly room for a great deal of growth and the only direction to go is up!

So please, if you read this blog and use Linux Mint even just part time, join the community website and get involved in helping make Linux Mint KDE a real player in the battle of the open source desktops. 

If you have joined, or when you do, come back and drop a comment here and we can all connect there to tie some of the Mint KDE community together. And show Mint KDE the props and statistical bump it wholeheartedly deserves.