PC World: Dell Launches 13" Ultrabook With Ubuntu OS
"The XPS 13 with Ubuntu was developed as part of an internal Dell project called "Project Sputnik." Over six months, Dell worked with the open-source community to develop tools, drivers and software for the OS to work on XPS 13, which has the frame of an ultrabook".
...."The company is committed to open source, and development around Linux and the laptop will continue, Orakwue and George said in separate statements."
Dell has been making Linux laptops for years. I ordered a Dell Mini 9 Netbook with Ubuntu Linux in 2008 after the Vista Fiasco. 2 years ago, I picked up a Dell Vostro 14 inch laptop with Ubuntu Linux. It cost less than $350 including shipping. it was one of the lowest priced laptops available at that time. Since then, I upgraded it to Linux Mint and it's more traditional desktop environment. Ubuntu switched to the Gnome 3/Unity interface to be more like a touch screen tablet. Unfortunately, this new graphical interface isn't very popular. Ubuntu dropped from #1 most popular Linux distro to third place, according to Distrowatch. That's why Linux Mint took the #1 spot instead. Microsoft could learn a few things from the mistakes Ubuntu made. Most users don't want a tablet interface on their desktop or laptop.
100% correct. Ubuntu was bent to push Gnome3 while users widely complained about it. Linux Mint was created to carry-on the Debian/Ubuntu heritage with a more traditional desktop and it quickly rose to become the most popular among the desktop Linux crowd.
Canonical finally got the message and recently announced support for Gnome2+ for Ubuntu.
This experience underscores two important messages. The ability to fork open-source GPL software assures Linux users they won't be held hostage to a "our way or the highway" attitude by a single company, and secondly technical PC users have already endured tablet-like UI's on desktops and overwhelmingly rejected it.
Ironically, M$ may have opened the door for Linux on the desktop. Windoze 8 is so different (and so awful), that consumers are now starting to accept that there are alternatives to M$ that aren't Apple.