My interview with Andy Woodhead, aka ActionParsnip.

Most of you who have seeked support for Ubuntu in IRC must have heard of Andy Woodhead aka ActionParsnip. Andy has been known for helping many people in parallel (see and is also known for his entry phase “Yo yo yo”. On 23rd July 2010 Andy was the 3rd highest contributor on Launchpad as a whole and have the highest Karma in the questions section being the first to beach the 100000 mark with 166739 karma points ( He has been an Ubuntu Memeber since 4th November 2011 and is usually available on IRC at in the channels: #ubuntu and #ubuntu-uk.

Me: So, tell me a little about yourself.

Andy: I’m a 31 year old NOC engineer, I’ve used Linux since 2001 starting with Mandrake Linux which then turned into Mandriva.

Me: How were you introduced to Ubuntu and Ubuntu contribution?

Andy: I heard about Ubuntu and thought I’d give it a try. Started with Kubuntu Gutsy (as Mandrake uses KDE) was ok and the OS seemed ok so I switched. Through searching te web for guides I found the forums and launchpad quite easily as well as the IRC channels. I started helping out and it kinda went from there.

Me: Why did you choose to contribute to the Ubuntu Community?

Andy: I contribute to make the community stronger. People knowing more will enable THEM to help others and they will, in turn, help others. Making Ubuntu better and in turn making Linux stronger. Many users often go to other distros but much of the knowledge is transferable (especially command line stuff) so it makes those distributions stronger too. I personally have few Ubuntu issues as my needs are simple and my hardware is bought to be super compatible so I have no issues. So I learn the OS by helping others.

Me: Except providing support, are there any ways you contribute to Ubuntu?

Andy: I report bugs, which I think everyone should do, otherwise no. All I do is support.

Me:What are your views about the current status of the Ubuntu Community?

The community is pretty decent. Users need to do more searching though. When an new term is presented to them then immediately ask “what is that” or similar, rather than using initiative and researching. The support in IRC, Launchpad and ubuntuforums etc etc is getting a LOT better. Sites like omgubuntu are also a great source of how-tos and news too

Me: What would you like to see improved in Ubuntu Community?

Andy: People using initiative, people being more adventurous. Yes Ubuntu is aimed at new Linux users (primarily) but users need to realise that learning about their OS a little bit is a good thing and make their lives easier.

Me: What do you do in your free time (when you are not contributing to Ubuntu)?

Andy: Drink, rock out, travel, get tattoos and piercing and drawing. Researching technology a little and then working which pretty much kills 4 days of 8 (I work European shifts). Just exploring the world and seeing what it can do.

Me: Except Ubuntu, do you contribute to any other project ?

Andy: I contribute to projects which make up Ubuntu, like Open/Libreoffice as well as Lubuntu. Stuff like that.