Yesterday we launched the Ubuntu App Showdown contest. It has been great to see the excitement and interest in the contest!

One of the pieces of feedback we have seen is about the requirement to use Quickly (a tool we recommend developers use to generate, edit code, and package and release their apps). We always strongly recommend people use Quickly, but due to a desire for non-Quickly users to participate, we are no longer requiring it.

As such, while we recommend new developers use Quickly (and you can get started with Quickly here), if you want to use the other development tools, languages and toolkits in Ubuntu 12.04, you are welcome to. This opens the contest up to Qt developers and C/C++ GTK developers and more.

If you choose to not use Quickly, remember that you still need to meet the submission requirements outlined below:

  • Your app must run perfectly in Ubuntu 12.04.
  • It should be packaged in a Personal Package Archive (PPA).
  • It should run from /opt.
  • It should only depend on libraries that are available in the Ubuntu 12.04 Ubuntu archives.

Apps that do not meet these criteria will be rejected from the contest.

Quickly automates almost all of this, but if you would prefer to not use Quickly and do this manually, then you are welcome to participate!

Good luck in the contest…the three week countdown begins on Monday 18th June 2012!

  • Robin Jacobs

    “It should run from /opt”… Huh? Not /usr/bin?

    • gabrielsamfira

      I suppose that if 2 people get the same idea for a binary name, it should not be a problem if you install in in:


      As each prefix will have it’s own “bin” directory.

    • Ian Santopietro

      opt is a general place for self-contained applications. I believe a launcher script will still be installed to /usr/bin

  • Lucas Betschart

    Thank you. All I need now is a good idea ;)

    Some of the ideas on reddit sound interesting, but I think there will be many people implementing those ideas, so I probably have to be creative by myself.

    • RPG Master

      Psssstt… Hey, here is a suggestion I was thinking about adding to reddit, but decided against because it’s really more than one. What we really need is more GUI frontends to CLI apps like Mednafen, MAME, and all sorts of other I can think of at this moment. If you don’t, I hope someone does. :D

      EDIT: Wait, I’m no programmer, but does “must run from /opt” mean it can’t just be a CLI frontend, but has to be a full standalone app?

      • Robin Jacobs

        The rules state that the application must be written from scratch. I am not sure if that means that it can’t be a frontend for a command line application. Some of the rules are really vague…

  • Hanynowsky

    I would try to upload some tiny thing just for the sake of a T-shirt :)

    • David Planella

      Sure, but note that your app must meet some minimum usefulness and quality standards to be appropriate for the contest and qualify for the T-shirt :-)

  • Aviral Dasgupta

    Love the idea of the contest.

    Can someone please tell me if hybrid apps are allowed? I mean if half
    of my app runs on Windows and the other half runs on Ubuntu? (and these
    parts are not the “same” — by running parts on Windows and parts on
    Ubuntu it provides a unique functionality)

    The Ubuntu “part” will of course be written in Python with Quickly.

    • Insightful Troll

      I’m not sure what you mean by Hybrid, butIf i am required to have windows to run your software in Ubuntu, then no…

      It seems you didn’t read the post :

      It should only depend on libraries that are available in the Ubuntu 12.04 Ubuntu archives.

      • Aviral Dasgupta

        No, what I meant was something like an app for Ubuntu that can say for example change your Windows background (by the use of another app installed in Windows.) You’d be able to install the Ubuntu app even if you didn’t have Windows, but it’d be of no use to you.

        Of course, that isn’t the app I’m developing, and it’s just an example.

  • shubham maheshwari

    what do you mean by running from opt/ where does from qt apps run

    • Insightful Troll

      they run from where ever their files are found… ergo there is no set spot…

      this concept of running stuff from /opt is to segregate distribution provided software (which uses and relies on distribution provided libraries)…

      Stuff running in /opt might use different versions of libraries that are installed by the distributions package manager.

  • Thanks! I think that it’s more exciting to develop apps directly from zero (I’m still using PyGTK, but this time directly with Bazaar, Launchpad and packaging tools) than using Quickly :)

    I have a question: Can I develop an app planned before, which was added in Launchpad, but which no source code was made?

    • jonobacon


  • Framin2

    Is it possible to use Java + SWT?

    • jonobacon

      You can use anything so long as the dependencies are in Ubuntu 12.04
      and the package installs to /opt – this can include Java if it meets
      these criteria.

    • David Planella

      As stated in the previous comment, yes, you can use Java, with any choice of graphical widgets toolkit :)

  • Neat

    Is java allowed? I don’t remember if java comes on a clean installation now and that’s the language I know best. “Quickly” is kind of confusing, it needs a unified IDE instead of using command line to navigate to different steps…

    • jonobacon

      You can use anything so long as the dependencies are in Ubuntu 12.04 and the package installs to /opt – this can include Java if it meets these criteria.

      • Aviral Dasgupta

        Dependencies “are in Ubuntu” == are preinstalled, or are available in the repos?

        • Fitoschido

          Available in the repos.