Chapter 7 of the 6th edition of The Official Ubuntu Book discusses and outlines the highlights of the Ubuntu community that users have the opportunity to participate in when using and navigating their Ubuntu operating system. As mentioned in Chapter 7, when users install and use Ubuntu, they gain so much more than an operating system; users gain an ever-growing and evolving vibrant community that continues to gain strength from members like you, whether your role is the user, contributor, or developer.
As a user, if you are new to Ubuntu and want to know how you can join and contribute as well as participate in the Ubuntu community, you'll find much more information in Chapter 7 and on the extra CD included with the Barnes & Noble edition of The Official Ubuntu Book, but in this article I'll introduce you to one of the easiest ways to get involved with the Ubuntu CommunityThe Ubuntu Local Communityalong with more details surrounding the Ubuntu Local Community (LoCo) and how you the user can locate and begin to participate in the LoCo nearest you. We'll also discuss what happens if you can't find a LoCo near you and how you can (if you desire) start your own LoCo team.
The LoCo Community
Before I tell you how to find your LoCo Community, let's first discuss what a LoCo team is and why these teams are important to the Ubuntu Community. As mentioned above, LoCo is short for Local Community, and each of these teams help bring the whole of the Ubuntu community together in small localized communities. As the popularity of Ubuntu continues, the LoCo communities make it possible for whole of the community to stay connected and communicate, organize events, and share ideas. These teams also scale well and help keep those users, which hopefully you will be one of these, who want to participate and contribute in all ways throughout the world and in every language.
To find out more about a LoCo team in your area, all you need to do is head over to the LoCo Directory website (see Figure 1). The site gives users several ways to find a team near you, and you can either click on your geographical location on the map or on the Teams tab at the top of the menu.
Figure 1 The LoCo Directory website
The Teams page (see Figure 2) breaks out the teams by region: Africa, Asia, Australia/Oceania, Europe, North America, South America, and Teams Without Country. Looking more closely at the page, you will find that teams are listed in different colors, indicating whether the LoCo team is an approved or unapproved team (see Figure 3).
Figure 2 LoCo Team Directory
Figure 3 Approved or unapproved teams
The LoCo Directory website also offers a links on using and familiarizing the user with how to use the site, along with upcoming meetings, events, LoCo Council, About LoCo teams, and IRC (Internet Relay Chat) chat (see Figure 4).
Figure 4 Other website offerings