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Official Ubuntu Book, The (6th Edition)

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AS WE WRITE THIS, it has been several years since we penned the first edition of The Official Ubuntu Book. Over that time, we have seen Ubuntu continue its explosive growth. Updating this book drives this fact home in striking ways. For example, the number of users and posts in the Ubuntu Forums has nearly doubled since the last edition of this book a year ago. Again. The number of officially supported flavors of Ubuntu has increased as well. Again. Once again, we feel blessed that The Official Ubuntu Book has been able to benefit from, and perhaps in a small way even contribute to, that success. Ultimately, that success paved the way for several subsequent editions, and now the sixth edition, of the book that you’re reading now.

In the process, this book, like Ubuntu, continues to mature. Our job as authors, like that of the Ubuntu developers, now involves more updating and polishing than it used to. Distributed under a free license, a once-risky book on a once-risky operating system is, just a few short years later, as close to a sure thing as an author, publisher, and if we have done our job well, a reader, could hope for.

And yet with success comes responsibility to our readers and to our users with high expectations. Ubuntu’s success is built in part of maturity and excellence, and it cannot sacrifice these qualities if it will succeed. We cannot either. Our job as writers is complicated because we need to accurately reflect and represent both while catering to an increasing and increasingly diverse group of users.

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