According to Stephen Vaughan-Nichols there will be 2.4 million more Linux desktop users by the end of the year. And that's only counting Eee PC users.
"The company shipped 2.5 million notebooks in the first half of this
year, 1.7 million units in the third quarter and is expecting to ship
1.9 million units in the fourth quarter, bringing the company's annual
notebook shipments in 2008 to at least six million units." Breaking
that down by operating system, "The ratio of Eee PCs preloaded Windows
XP and Linux stands at 7:3."
That's a lot of people. We need to invite both those people and Asustek to engage with our communities. The default install that comes with my Eee PC 700 still does not have wireless or camera working correctly. That's fixed in other Linux distributions but installing a new distribution requires more technical expertice than your average user has. (As anyone who saw me running around at GUADEC with a half installed distro on my Eee PC can attest to.)
As more and more open source software comes out on devices and netbooks, we need to make sure the vendors and the users are aware of the network of passionate people that are here willing to lend their expertice via mailing lists, forums and blog posts.