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To start with, let us define the meaning of the word Ubuntu. According to its official website Ubuntu is an ancient African word that means 'humanity to others', a truly wonderful word especially in the technology world of today which is monopolized by big corporations that could be fairly described as profit driven corporations.

However, people in Western countries and in the economically booming Asian countries do have the option to choose between the three major operating systems (Windows, Apple OS and Linux). Others in less fortunate countries have no choice but to use non-original copies of windows that have no online support which make them very vulnerable to malware and they crashes most of the time.

Few years back Linux was not very user friendly and was mainly used by command line geeks/nerds. This has given the long lasting impression that Linux is not suited for everyone. However, with the recent improvement of gnome, kde, Xfce Linux has become very user friendly (especially Ubuntu) and some might argue that it is more friendly than Windows (the most popular), and in my own opinion I agree as Windows started to copy gnome (e.g. multiple desktops) and the menu layout in gnome has become neater, better categorized and more logical than the one Windows has (in windows XP , to turn off your PC you have to click on start to choose shutdown which is Ridiculously illogical!).

Fortunately, projects like one laptop per child (OLPC) have introduced the open source sugar desktop environment to African children which can come as an installable package in many Linux distributions. In addition Linux has started to become the favourite choice for business managers and telecommunication companies across Africa. This is mainly because the cost, speed, robustness and the wide online community support of Linux. In other countries like Sudan the economical sanctions by the United States has forced companies to use Linux as their main operating system. Oral advertisement by IT individuals has also played a big role on increasing the popularity of Linux in Africa. In the end I would like to emphasize my admiration on the current orientation towards Linux in Africa and I predict that Linux will continue on spreading across the continent as people are becoming more aware of the benefits of the open source trend.

Author Profile

My name is Amin Salim and I am Sudanese born in Kuwait. I hold a degree in Information Systems (BSC) from the University of Leeds. I have worked as a research assistant for a local expertise and consultancy firm called (SUDEXAM). Then I travelled to Sierra Leone and worked for the project development unit as an Information Systems engineer. My role was doing the financial analysis and the whole editing for the feasibility studies and providing technical support. I am flexible, and a good team player as realized from conducting feasibility studies with people from different backgrounds and qualifications. Afterwards I came back to Sudan and worked as self-employed software engineer and have developed a system by myself from scratch for a charity eye-hospital. The system functionality was to keep track of stock and sales (written in Java). I am very versatile individual as proven from working on different disciplines and always looking to improve my skills.

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