I use so few of the packages that come installed by default in ubuntu. 4 of the accessories, none of the games, one of the image things, none of the stuff that's not even in the main menu by default. Can I install Ubuntu without all this extra crap and pick what I want after install?
Are these programs just part of Gnome?
A little googling tells me that simple things like aptitude, wget, vi(m), and whois can be missing if I install the meta-package, ubuntu-minimal instead of ubuntu-standard. I don't know how to make that switch, anyway, but I might like to.
I guess this scratches the surface of a bigger question of the things installed on my computer by Ubuntu:
What components are Ubuntu?
What components are Gnome?
What components are plain Linux?
I want a very basic system, without any extra bloat, but with the ability to install any bloat I choose. This is a big reason I quit Windows.