There's still a month left until the Intrepid Ibex is released (or perhaps better known as Ubuntu 8.10), but Mark Shuttleworth has begun outlining the plans for the next Ubuntu release. Following Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" will be.....
hm, I'd love to see what kind of work they plan on doing to speed up boot.
It's not terribly hard to make it insanely fast, just nobody's really done it.
For example pushing detection of just about anything over to udev and doing it after boot, starting up X early and having it hotplug devices as they come up etc.
I also noticed upstart is looking into adding a "LATER" service level, to start after everything else has been started, simple thing really, something I've done personally for ages with custom init scripts.
Another thing I do is run a custom auditd daemon that monitors all files accessed during boot, to preload them on next boot, while usb detection etc is being done, it's not hard to do, someone just has to take the initiative and do it.
Mark has also announced actual upstream collaboration for Ubuntu 25.10. Great news (sorry for that one, couldn't resist)
As for the boot time, I personally don't care, I only boot once a day (and have to type passwords) so I don't think saving 10s there is going to make any difference for me (if it did, I would be buying a SSD right away).