The Kubuntu Distribution is now an official part of Ubuntu. They run the same base OS, but have developers who configure the KDE side of things.
Official yes, but not, I think, equal. Gnome is the default, and gets more effort. Mandriva (and SuSE?) is desktop neutral: Gnome and KDE get equal treatment from marketing to development. A particular shortcoming in Kubuntu (unless its changed in the last year) is configuration compared to the Mandriva Control Centre.
I don't see the everyday consumer poping open the console to run a sudo get apt which seemed to be the fastest way to get anything on a ubuntu computer.
Every mainstream Linux distro has a GUI software installer. Yes, the command line is faster, but the GUI is still a lot faster, easier, safer and more convenient than the alternatives Windows gives you (buy software on a CD and then install from that, or search the internet, download and then run the installer).
I think from windows to linux would have a higher learning curve then say from mac to windows.
I disagree. A default installation of KDE or Gnome looks and works far more like Windows than Windows does like MacOS. The only thing you really need to learn is how to use the (GUI) software installer. On the other hand a new Windows user needs to learn about anti-virus and keeping it up to date, the equivalents of Finder, a taskbar that works very differently from its Mac equivalent, etc.
I have just installed, from Synaptic, the packages rar and unrar-free. Installation went fine. When I looked for them they were not in the menu. OK, they are probably both command line apps, although I've seen rar shown as having a gui.
If you have rar and unrar installed, you should be able to uncompress or create rar files from any of Dolphin (and Konq, presumably), Ark, File Roller, X-Archiver, and probably others.
Three or four apps I've installed using Synaptic over the past month or so have failed.
How many apps have you installed? This should be a very rare occurrence. Have you reported the bug? dns-browse is in the "universe" repo (not main) so a support is not official, but stuff like this usually gets fixed.
If it doesn't run in Ubuntu, don't offer it at all.
Ubuntu cannot possibly maintain all the software in all the repos. You seem to be expecting Ubuntu to take more responsibility for stuff in the universe repo than Apple and Google for stuff in the iPhone store or Android marketplace. I cannot compare to Windows because there is no parallel service.
I agree it should work, but its down to package maintainers rather than Ubuntu itself.
On the other hand if it is in the "main" repo, I am pretty sure something that basic would get fixed quickly (my recent experience with reporting bugs in Mandriva has been excellent).