02.25.09

Gemini version available ♊︎

Huge 180 in Favour of Free Software and ODF in the UK

Posted in Europe, Free/Libre Software, Law at 5:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

US and UK flags

SEVERAL READERS urged us to mention the big news from the UK. This comes as a great surprise given the government's attitude towards Free software.

Here is the source of the news where Free software affinity is shown (they call it “open source”).

Open Source has been one of the most significant cultural developments in IT and beyond over the last two decades: it has shown that individuals, working together over the Internet, can create products that rival and sometimes beat those of giant corporations; it has shown how giant corporations themselves, and Governments, can become more innovative, more agile and more cost-effective by building on the fruits of community work; and from its IT base the Open Source movement has given leadership to new thinking about intellectual property rights and the availability of information for re–use by others.

Coverage we were able to pick up is as follows.

OSI: UK Government Getting Real About Open Source

As billions of bail-out dollars become trillions, it is clear that we need to be realistic about the nature and the solutions to our world-wide software crisis. Today the world spends more than $3T USD per year on systems that are largely based on vendor lock-in, not value and not free and fair competition. What is most shocking about the $3T USD number is not its sheer size alone, but the fact that fully $1T USD of that number is written off ever year when people are forced to abandon their projects before putting them into production. The place to fix that problem is not in any specific piece of software (most of which has 20-30 defects per 1000 source lines of code), but in the fundamental system of competition that is responsible for ensuring that malignant software can be successfully removed in the first place. The UK Government’s decision is a strong step in the direction of properly restoring the right kind of competition in the marketplace. The days of rewarding past performance, especially the performance of amassing billions of dollars based on strategic lock-in, must be put behind us. And we should treat any use of such funds for furthering vendor lock-in as extremely suspect and worthy of an immediate and full investigation.

Computer Weekly (UK): Government pushes open source with 10-point plan

The government is getting serious about using open source as a building block in systems development.

Yesterday its top IT policy-making body, the CIO Council, published a10

point action plan that frees central and local government departments to use open source systems where possible.

IDG: Open Source? Labour’s Working on It

There’s no doubt that in the UK the winners so far have been the Conservatives, who have seized on open source as a stick with which to beat the current government’s miserable record on large-scale IT projects, most of which have been way over budget at best, and utter failures at worst (with some managing both).

This has understandably put pressure on Labour to come up with a riposte, and yesterday it was unveiled in the form of something called “Open Source, Open Standards and Re–Use: Government Action Plan” (there’s a handy version from WriteToReply here, where you can add your comments.

BBC: UK government backs open source

The UK government has said it will accelerate the use of open source software in public services.

Tom Watson MP, minister for digital engagement, said open source software would be on a level playing field with proprietary software such as Windows.

Advogato: Open Source, Open Standards and Re-Use: UK Government Policy

The UK Government has made it clear that Open Source and Open Standards, with a focus on re-use of software development and deployment, is to clearly and unequivocably be part of the decision-making for UK Government I.T. procurement and contracting. Also part of the policy is a clear committment to engage with the Free Software community and to actively encourage the development of “Government-Class” Free Software products.

Alan Lard: UK Government: Starts The Push For FOSS?

Whoa! This comes from the Chief Information Office Council. Yes, the Government is so big they can’t have just one CIO like even the biggest Enterprise, they have to have a whole council of them ;-)

Jupitermedia: Is the UK going open source?

The new UK initiative however is not a wholesale rip and replace of the proprietary tools it already uses. It does not restrict the use of proprietary software either, but rather ‘supports’ open standards over closed proprietary lock-in.

Simon Phipps (Sun): UK Government Endorses Open Source and ODF

Late today (UK time), the British Government issued a bold new strategy for use of open source software – and open standards – in Great Britain. In Open Source, Open Standards and Re-Use, the government’s Minister for Digital Engagement (yes, really, and he’s on Twitter too) significantly revised the brave but toothless policy of 2004 “that it should seek to use Open Source where it gave the best value for money to the taxpayer in delivering public services”. This is fantastic news – the digital tipping point is at hand. (The publication is also progressive in having nominated use of the tag “#ukgovOSS” in comment and coverage so it can be found and aggregated).

The Register: Government publishes open-source strategy

The announcement follows a recent declaration by shadow chancellor George Osborne that the Conservative Party favours the greater use of open source and would take action to prove a “level playing field”.

VNUNet: Government publishes open-source strategy

Heise: UK Government policy update supports open source

Torygraph: Labour disingenously adopts Tory position on open source software

There will surely be plenty more in days to come. Since the UK is one of the countries closest this Microsoft, this is pretty major. Microsoft partners like Fortify [1, 2] will soon try to rain on this parade or maybe even 'pull a Quinn' on the CIO in charge.

“[W]hat things an app would do that would make it run with MSDOS and not run with DR-DOS. Is there [sic] feature they have that might get in our way?”

Bill Gates

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

2 Comments

  1. Jose_X said,

    February 25, 2009 at 11:04 pm

    Gravatar

    I’ll quote a pessimistic interpretation from irc:
    “Open Source, Open Standards and Re–Use: Government Action Plan” – - >
    “Shared Source, OOXML, and reuse Windows: Government Buyout Plan”

  2. Jose_X said,

    February 27, 2009 at 1:10 am

    Gravatar

    180 degree change on my part from my prior comment/view.. because now I actually read the news story. It seems FOSS companies will (in theory) almost be guaranteed to win contracts because the UK has properly based their requirements on maximizing value, which is where FOSS excels.

    See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7910110.stm
    http://www.linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?ltsn=2009-02-26-019-35-NW-BZ-0003

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Links 25/09/2022: EasyOS 4.4, KDE Reviewed

    Links for the day



  2. Microsoft is Trying to Eliminate POP3 and IMAP for E-mail (Attack on Commodity or Standard Protocols)

    Microsoft is trying to decommoditise (read: control) E-mail by shutting out people who use standard protocols; how long have we got before E-mail becomes a surveillance-intensive walled garden?



  3. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, September 24, 2022

    IRC logs for Saturday, September 24, 2022



  4. YouTube (Alphabet Gulag) Keeps Censoring Videos About Free Software and GNU/Linux

    YouTube (the Alphabet/Google Gulag) seems to be weeding out discussion of software freedom; it's a longstanding issue reported by several GNU/Linux-centric channels over the years



  5. Links 24/09/2022: pgAdmin 4 v6.14 and ONLYOFFICE 7.2 Released

    Links for the day



  6. Links 23/09/2022: KDE Weekly Outline and UbuntuDDE Remix 22.04

    Links for the day



  7. IRC Proceedings: Friday, September 23, 2022

    IRC logs for Friday, September 23, 2022



  8. Geminispace Roughly Quadrupled in Size (and Grew a Lot in Terms of Number of Capsules) Since We Joined It Last Year

    Despite the media's apathy (pretending that Gemini does not exist or does not matter), Geminispace continues to expand and we have 42,703 pages in it



  9. [Meme] Getting Promoted (or Hired/Recruited/Absorbed Directly Into Top Management) by Knowing “The F***ing President”

    The EPO‘s own numbers indicate that as a female it's incredibly hard to get promoted at the EPO; the insiders’ joke is, you need to be a former colleague of Benoît Battistelli/António Campinos (or even a spouse) to get promoted



  10. According to EPO Data, Women Have No Place at the EPO (Unless They Fancy Being Underpaid)

    The European Patent Office, accused by a former president who was female of an “alphamale” issue, treats women poorly; incidentally, she wasn’t just the only female president in a ~25 year period but also the only non-French president in that same period (EPO diversity is a sad farce)



  11. Links 23/09/2022: PeerTube 4.3 and GNOME Report

    Links for the day



  12. Links 23/09/2022: EuroBSDcon 2022 Ahead, PowerDNS Recursor 4.5.11, 4.6.4 and 4.7.3 Out

    Links for the day



  13. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, September 22, 2022

    IRC logs for Thursday, September 22, 2022



  14. Links 22/09/2022: ExTiX 22.9, Rust 1.64.0, Weston 11.0.0, New Mesa, and OpenCL 3.0.12

    Links for the day



  15. Microsoft Will Soon be Unlisted in Netcraft's Web Survey (Due to Minuscule, Negligible Market Share)

    A few hours ago this was released by Netcraft; it seems clear that Netcraft’s tables already omit Microsoft in all except 2, where Microsoft is placed last and rapidly loses share (it’ll fall out of sight soon)



  16. Links 22/09/2022: GNOME Builder 43.0 and Hype Over Ubuntu Wallpaper

    Links for the day



  17. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, September 21, 2022

    IRC logs for Wednesday, September 21, 2022



  18. Linux Foundation 'Europe' a Front Group for Patent Trolls and American Monopolies

    About 90% of the Linux Foundation‘s money is spent in the United States (see IRS filing); it’s not global but a front for American corporate interests so adding ‘Europe’ to the name is misleading to say the least; it enables hostile interference in Linux’s name (the lobbyists like to claim to be speaking for those whom they’re against by hijacking words/names)



  19. The Life of Linux Will Be Shortened by a Misguided Adoption of Rust

    There are currently loads of puff pieces (mindless corporate fluff, no technical considerations) about Rust coming to Linux in the sense that Linux will become dependent on a monstrous shebang controlled by Microsoft proprietary software; a lot of developers very well understand the risk, but it feels like nobody wants to face the mob (for saying out loud that the emperor is naked)



  20. Pale Moon's Greed and Corrosive People (Boosted by Microsoft) in “FOSS” “Communities”

    Reprinted with permission from Ryan



  21. The EPO's Local Staff Committee The Hague (LSCTH) is “Requesting Immediate Action”

    Despite relatively quiet weeks there is no calm at the EPO; the quality of patents continues to fall and staff isn't being properly rewarded for the work



  22. [Meme] EPO Abuse Continues, Managers Acting Deaf

    EPO management continues to gaslight and abuse staff, even in direct violation of the EPO’s rules and legal contracts



  23. Links 21/09/2022: GNOME 43 and i3 4.21 Released

    Links for the day



  24. Official Ubuntu Blog Has Just Promoted Microsoft Windows+Systemd

    When people try to install Ubuntu on their PC (if they can get past the illegal technical obstacles) Canonical recommends Microsoft's proprietary software and it also keeps promoting Windows (WSL); what sort of deal/s has Canonical signed with Microsoft? Ubuntu is fast becoming a ‘filthy’ distro like SUSE after Novell signed the deal with Microsoft.



  25. Links 21/09/2022: Debuginfod in Ubuntu

    Links for the day



  26. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, September 20, 2022

    IRC logs for Tuesday, September 20, 2022



  27. Links 20/09/2022: OpenJDK Java 19 and System76 Thelio Puff Pieces; More Debian-Private 'Leaks'

    Links for the day



  28. Links 20/09/2022: Darktable 4.0.1, SuperTuxKart 1.4 Release Candidate, and Gajim 1.5.0

    Links for the day



  29. IRC Proceedings: Monday, September 19, 2022

    IRC logs for Monday, September 19, 2022



  30. Links 19/09/2022: Firefox 105 and OpenMandriva on Ampere Altra

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts