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Canonical hiring a Desktop Gaming Product Manager for Ubuntu Linux

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It seems Canonical, creator of Ubuntu, is finally looking to get serious and improve Ubuntu gaming with a new Desktop Gaming Product Manager job waiting to pull someone in.

Currently, Ubuntu is still the most popular Linux distribution on Steam, but the likes of Manjaro have been closing the gap so perhaps with moves like this Canonical can keep Ubuntu on top. It certainly needs the push, as more and more people are recommending new users install something else, such as Pop!_OS. Even Valve have moved away from a Debian base for SteamOS 3 with it being based on Arch Linux. Indeed, their Partner documentation suggests Manjaro for developers who don't have access to a SteamDeck dev-kit (although Ubuntu remains their recommendation for native Linux development outside of the SteamDeck).

According to the job advert, Canonical want to "make Ubuntu the best Linux desktop for gaming" and they "work with partners in the silicon world to ensure the latest graphics drivers and tweaks are built-in for optimal frame rates and latency, as well as with partners in the gaming industry to ensure that mechanisms such as anti-cheat capabilities are available to ensure fairness and product availability".

This role leads the product and go-to-market for gaming on Ubuntu Desktop. You will define product strategy as well as drive engagement and adoption. The role requires an analytical storyteller with a strong sense of message and a deep understanding of Linux graphics, gaming, and desktop technologies and communities. We prefer university-graduated professionals with software engineering and software engineering management experience who want to become business executives and entrepreneurs.

Key points of the job include:

  • Lead desktop graphics choices in Ubuntu
  • Drive partnerships in the graphics silicon, desktop, and gaming spheres
  • Tell the story of Ubuntu for gamers
  • Lead engineering design and development

It's a work from home job, so if you think you have what it takes, take a look at the job listing.

While you're here, what do you think Ubuntu can improve to make Linux gaming better? Let us know in the comments. Maybe a potential candidate will get some ideas.

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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly. Find me on Mastodon.
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mcphail Jan 4, 2022
Quoting: Perkeleen_VittupääShuttleworth has to go? Could you give some obvious evidence how that would help? He has been a solid leader thus far, but as always, no one is right in their decisions all the time. Ubuntu (and Canonical) also have become a more larger ship to sail and steer.

First, look at the attrition rate of Desktop Leads over the past few years and take a moment to research how many other briefs they'd been assigned by upper management at the same time as the main job. Then look at the exodus of prominent engineers such as jdstrand, zyga etc. That should be setting off some alarms about the culture of the place.

Secondly, have a browse at the stories on Glassdoor. That's always going to be a bit biased, as disgruntled ex employees will have laundry to air. Nevertheless, it is a piece of the jigsaw.

Finally, have a look at the social media timelines of people like Joe McManus (ex security lead and ex host of the Ubuntu Security Podcast) - , and Alan Pope, who was one of the most recognisable community leads and host of the Ubuntu Podcast (in response to Liam) - .

Canonical, as a place to work, is not getting a good reputation right now. As someone who loves their product, it is difficult to watch this. Mark has been CEO for a long time, on and off, and it is hard to see how he could turn this around. If it was a public company, I don't think he'd still be there. He can be proud about what he has achieved but hanging around for too long damages him and his project.
rustybroomhandle Jan 7, 2022
This application uses the phrase "our competition". This is not strictly wrong, there's always some competing for market share. But it also points to a misguided attitude about Linux/open source. No matter what your distro/tech is, we're all pulling the same cart. It's an ecosystem to which all must contribute and nurture.
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