I have Xubuntu 9.04 running in our old machine at home. I'm looking to run some interactive fiction interpreters such as Frobtads there as well. However, it appears most of the Linux versions of the general IF software are in source form. Pre-compiled binaries are usually available either for Windows users or for other versions of Linux (Debian, etc.).
Do I generally need to compile these if it's only available in source form? What considerations should I keep in mind when doing so?
N.B.: Please provide as much detail as possible. I'm still exploring how to use most of Xubuntu :)