2011 LinuxQuestions.org Members Choice Award Winners – Thoughts

The polls are closed and the official results are in. You can view the detailed results here, but I’ll include a list of winners at the end of this post for convenience. We also have a nice visual overview of all categories on a single page, new last year, available here. This was the eleventh annual LinuxQuestions.org Members Choice Awards and we’ve set a record for participation each and every year. We once again had some extremely close races, including multiple categories decided by a single vote and our first ever tie. If you have feedback on how we can improve the Members Choice Awards, let us know.

My thoughts on a few of the categories:

Browser of the Year – I’m fairly surprised how handily Firefox beat Chrome here. It’s significantly more skewed than our actual browser stats are.

Desktop Environment of the Year – After a multi-year run, Gnome has been unseated by KDE. Xfce had a very strong showing, while it’s clear many are still not happy with Unity.

Desktop Distribution of the Year – Ubuntu squeaked out another win, but Mint is definitely coming on strong. Note that as LQ is the official Slackware forum, we tend to skew toward that distro more than the general Linux community. I’d say that one of the only places where we’re not indicative of the general community consensus though.

NoSQL Database of the Year – Our first ever tie and the next runner up was right in the race. It’s clear that this nascent category of products is going to be a very competitive landscape for the time being.

Database of the Year – Despite the acquisition by Oracle, MySQL still easily won this category.

Office Suite of the Year – The same can’t be said for OpenOffice.org, however, which got crushed by LibreOffice in a category it has easily dominated for years.

The complete list of the winners is as follows (percentage of votes received in parentheses):

Desktop Distribution of the Year – Ubuntu (21.83%)
Server Distribution of the Year – Debian (31.15%)
Mobile Distribution of the Year – Android (69.43%)
Database of the Year – MySQL (49.54%)
NoSQL Database of the Year – Cassandra and MongoDB (26.23% each) <- first MCA TIE
Office Suite of the Year – LibreOffice (81.01%)
Browser of the Year – Firefox (56.60%)
Desktop Environment of the Year – KDE (33.01%)
Window Manager of the Year – Openbox (15.90%)
Messaging Application of the Year – Pidgin (53.57%)
VoIP Application of the Year – Skype (59.67%)
Virtualization Product of the Year – VirtualBox (61.13%)
Audio Media Player Application of the Year – amaroK (19.52%)
Audio Authoring Application of the Year – Audacity (77.46%)
Video Media Player Application of the Year – VLC (60.92%)
Video Authoring Application of the Year – FFmpeg (34.32%)
Graphics Application of the Year – GIMP (72.08%)
Network Security Application of the Year – Wireshark (24.35%)
Host Security Application of the Year – SELinux (50.42%)
Network Monitoring Application of the Year – Nagios (64.71%)
IDE/Web Development Editor of the Year – Eclipse (22.14%)
Text Editor of the Year – vim (31.21%)
File Manager of the Year – Dolphin (24.63%)
Open Source Game of the Year – Battle for Wesnoth (18.70%)
Programming Language of the Year – Python (29.48%)
Revision Control System of the Year – git (58.73%)
Backup Application of the Year – rsync (37.35%)
Open Source CMS/Blogging Platform of the Year – WordPress (48.62%)
Configuration Management Tool of the Year – Puppet (54.55%)
Open Source Web Framework of the Year – Django (32.38%)
Media Center of the Year – XBMC (47.76%)


SCALE 10x Musings

I’m currently on a flight home after attending SCALE 10x, which seemed like an opportune time to reflect on the event. SCALE was once again an amazing event. Kudos go out to Ilan, Gareth, Phil and the entire SCALE team; the tracks were excellent, the event well managed and well attended (I don’t know if official numbers are out, but I believe they fell *just* short of their goal of 2,000 attendees) and the social scene was as vibrant as ever. SCALE really is the bar by which local community events should be measured.

While I didn’t live blog the event this year, as I have in the past, I did live tweet it. Visit the @linuxquestions twitter account if you’re interested. Some general thoughts after attending SCALE.

* Open Source and Open Standards, as they pertain to the cloud, are going to be huge and hotly debated topics in 2012; and likely well beyond. There seems to be a feeling that this is something huge that’s still just in its infancy, and that makes the topic interesting and exciting.
* Big data and distributed filesystems also appear to be heading for widespread mainstream adoption in the near future. On that note, LQ is considering moving away from OCFS2 as part of our next infrastructure update. If there’s anyone with GlusterFS experience in a production web environment, we’d be interested in hearing from you. We’d also be interested in other solutions you feel may be well suited.
* The MySQL ecosystem is not only thriving, but wildly more diverse than when it was just MySQL AB.
* Very small but very powerful devices such as the Raspberry Pi and the Pandaboard are not only remarkable, but should open the door to a whole new class of devices and possibilities. The amount of innovation here should be awesome.
* DevOps has really matured at an impressive rate.

I look forward to attending SCALE 11x, which will be my 8th, next year.


Happy New Year & Browser and OS stats for 2011

I’d like to wish everyone a happy new year on behalf of the entire LQ team. 2011 has been another great year for LQ and we have quite a bit of exciting developments in store for 2012, including a major code update. 2011 also marks the year that we expanded on the LQ vision to launch The Questions Network along with LQ’s fist sister site, AndroidQuestions.org.

I’ve once again posted to this blog far less frequently in 2011 than I’d have liked to, and I’m going to work to change that this year (I do post to twitter fairly often, for those interested).

As has become tradition, here are the browser and OS statistics for the main LQ site for all of 2011 (2010 stats for comparison).

Firefox 53.07%
Chrome 24.79%
Internet Explorer 13.50%
Safari 3.59%
Opera 3.05%
Android Browser 0.26%
Konqueror .23%

The Firefox decline at LQ continues, while one in four now use Chrome to access the site. For the first time, a mobile browser has broken into the top 10.

Operating Systems
Windows 52.68%
Linux 38.55%
Macintosh 6.99%
Android .44%
iPhone .35%

Windows and Macintosh use are slightly up from last year, while Linux use is actually slightly down. While Android and iPhone use are both up, Android surpassed iPhone for the first time.

I’d also like to take this time to thank each and every LQ member. You are what make the site great. Don’t forget to vote in the 2011 LinuxQuestions.org Members Choice Awards, which recently opened.


Migrating This Blog

Just a quick heads up that I am moving this blog to wordpress.com. I’d like to resume blogging at less sporadic intervals, so stay tuned. All subscriptions, permalinks and settings should have been preserved during the migration. If you notice any issues, let me know ASAP. Thanks.



LinuxQuestions.org Turns Eleven

I’m extremely excited to announce that exactly eleven years ago today I made my very first post at LinuxQuestions.org. As I’ve stated numerous times, since then LQ has exceeded my expectation in every way. 4,382,316 posts and 457,176 registered members does not even begin to tell the story. The community and mod team that has grown at LQ is truly amazing and something that I’m very proud to be a part of. I’d like to once again thank each and every LQ member for their participation, dedication and feedback.

To say that feedback has been absolutely critical to our success is an understatement. It would be impossible to enumerate the features we’ve added or changes we’ve made as a direct result of member feedback. With that in mind, I’d like to use this thread to collect as much feedback as possible about LQ. What are we doing well and where can we improve? What new features or sections would you like to see? What should we be doing differently? As part of our birthday celebration, we’ll be giving away Contributing Member updates, LQ Merchandise and even a gratis pass to OSCON 2011 in Portland. Stay tuned for more details.

With more than a decade under our belts, you may be wondering what’s next for LQ. I’m happy to say that after eleven years, our mission remains as laser focused now as it was when I started the site; to be the absolute best resource we can be for the Linux and Open Source community. With the recent launch of The Questions Network, we also plan to use what we’ve learned at LQ and apply it to other related topics. The second TQN member site, AndroidQuestions.org, was recently taken out of BETA and we’re continuing to stabilize and improve the next generation platform that will soon run LQ. We anticipate adding other sites to the network as it makes sense, although a final decision for the next topic has not been decided yet (and we’re certainly open to feedback on that topic). Once nice thing about TQN is that, once you’re a member of one site you can use your credentials on any other member site. We’ll likely add OpenID, twitter, facebook and other identity providers to the mix soon which will make it easier than ever to participate.

Here’s to the next eleven years.


Announcing AndroidQuestions.org and Introducing The Questions Network

I’m extremely excited to announce that AndroidQuestions.org is now officially out of BETA. AndroidQuestions.org is for the discussion of all Android-related topics; from phones, tablets and other hardware devices to Android applications and development. Along with LinuxQuestions.org, AQ starts off what we’re calling The Questions Network. All sites in The Questions Network will share a unified login, meaning that if you’re one of the half a million members who have signed up for an LQ account, you’re able to login to AQ and start participating immediately. This will hold true for any future TQN sites as well; registering for one means you’re able to log into any. (Note that you’re account on an individual TQN site is not created until the first time you login.) The rapid adoption, vibrant ecosystem and its Linux roots made Android an easy selection as the topic of choice for the first addition to The Questions Network. What’s we’re hoping to do is take the lessons we’ve learning scaling and growing LQ and apply that to some other related topics. While we don’t have a definite selection for the next TQN site, we do have a couple ideas and are interested in what others think. I’m looking forward to this new challenge and anticipate learning some new things that we’ll be able to apply back to LQ. Note also that AQ runs the next generation platform that will eventually run LQ.


Blog Update

As you’ve likely noticed, this blog has been fairly quiet as of late (although I continue to tweet regularly). I’d like that to change however, as I’ve felt both constricted by the 140 character nature of twitter and disappointed about how they treat their ecosystem. Stay tuned for more regular updates here.



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