Friday, October 18, 2013

Musings on the new Ubuntu 14.04 LTS codename

Words are important, codenames doubly so. So when Mr Shuttleworth announced "Trusty Tahr" the codename for Ubuntu 14.04 in this post I thought I'd go look up the creature in Wikipedia ( and see how it fares.

Remembering that Mr Shuttleworth has been big on the convergence theme, even going so far as to claim Apple were following Canonical's lead in nailing an identical operating system in every device (they aren't but thats a different story) and that 14.04 is pencilled in as the big convergence... Well, picking the Tahr as the mascot has a little ironic issue. Lets go to Wikipedia...

 Until recently the three species were believed to be closely related and were placed in a single genus, Hemitragus. 

Good, thats good... very converged and....

Genetic studies have proved that the three tahrs are not as closely related as thought earlier. Now they are considered as members of three separate monotypic genera; Hemitragus is now reserved for the Himalayan Tahr, Nilgiritragus for the Nilgiri Tahr, and Arabitragus for the Arabian Tahr.

The technical term for this is "a bit of a bugger".

Still, Mr Shuttleworth does recount his exposure to the creature

"A small tourist tahr population lived on my favourite Table Mountain, and while they’ve made way for indigenous animals, for a long time they symbolised hardiness and fearlessness, perched as they were against the cliffs."

That's quite delightful. Tell us more Wikipedia....

There is also a population on Table Mountain in South Africa, descended from a pair of tahrs which escaped from a zoo in the 1930s, but most of these have been culled.

Ah, somewhat unfortunate for them and not really "making way for indigenous species". Still, the other Tahr's are doing fine...

While the Arabian Tahr of Oman and the Nilgiri Tahr of South India both have small ranges and are considered endangered...

Now stop that Wikipedia... How about the Himalayan ones?

 ...the Himalayan Tahr remains relatively widespread in the Himalayas, and has been introduced to the Southern Alps of New Zealand.

Ah, excellent, good to see the populat...

 It is hunted recreationally.

Oh come on! That's unfair, unless its really delicious...

The meat, in New Zealand, is considered to be of an acceptable standard.

Well, thats not setting the bar high. Why the hunting Wikipedia?

Tahr are considered a challenging species to hunt in New Zealand due to the high altitude they live at and the steep, bluffy terrain they frequent

They hide in the mountains and are hard to get to. Still, at least they are energetic beast with all that climbing and... OH WHAT IS IT WIKIPEDIA?

A daily routine of feeding up during the morning followed by a long rest period then feed down again at evening constitutes the tahr's daily routine.

I think I'd better leave it there. Good luck with the 14.04. I'd be getting a team on working out what to do for the letter U well in advance though.

No comments: