Well, it's been some time since I've posted here. Recently, Mark Shuttleworth announced that the next Ubuntu (9.10) will be known as Karmic Koala. That certainly caught my attention though I'm not so sure it's the good or bad kind.
Currently in-development Jaunty Jackalope seems to already have the beginnings of the new notification system Mark talked about earlier. Can't wait to see Jaunty once it's released!