If you’re rocking up to the Ubuntu Summit in Riga, Lativa next week you’ll find yourself in the company of Microsoft.

Yes, the makers of Windows (and one-time arch enemy of Linux) has announced it’s attending the Ubuntu Summit. Why? These days Microsoft loves Linux and open source, and has a healthy working relationship with Canonical, makers of Ubuntu.

We’re a long way from the days of that phrase, folks.

Microsoft won’t be there as a passive spectator, wandering the corridors between talks looking sheepish. Employees will be holding talks and workshops to showcase the “Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL), .NET 8 applications on Ubuntu, and Azure integration with Ubuntu’s snapshot service”.

They also want to “engage with the open-source community” and “experience first-hand new cutting-edge technologies”. While it hasn’t said such, I imagine there’ll be stickers too. You can’t go to a Linux event and not distribute stickers… It’s the law.

Check out the Microsoft blog post for a full list of the sessions it’ll be running at Ubuntu Summit 2023, or skip over to the summit mini-site to peruse the full schedule to spot talks by other companies, projects, and individuals you may be interested in.

Don’t forget: you don’t need to travel to Latvia to take part as all of the talks are streamed online during the course of the event (November 3rd – 5th). There’ll (presumably) be a live chat experience to enable remote participants to ask questions and ‘join in’ in real-time too.

As mind-bending as this all sounds to 2007-era me, I think Microsoft’s participation is a marvellous move that further cements the sincerity of its commitment to engaging, using, and promoting open source and Linux.