04 May 2007

First Big Blue, Now True Blue Open Source

I remember well my shock - and delight - when IBM announced that it was throwing its weight behind GNU/Linux on 10 January 2000. I feel somewhat similar about news that the Tories are also planning to push free software really hard:

A Tory strategy to make more use of open source software in the public sector is likely to tackle the culture of secrecy in government procurement, according to early details released to The Register.

Planned for publication next month and stemming from shadow chancellor George Osborne's adoption of a West Coast attitude, the plans are also likely to encourage the adoption of open standards and promote an indigenous open source industry.
Click here to find out more!

Mark Thompson, a Cambridge University IT lecturer and businessman who is drawing up Osborne's request to make Britain the "open source leader of Europe", said that procurement - including the notoriously secretive gateway process - might be opened up so that it was easier for smaller firms to pay homage to the public purse.

Indeed, I find myself echoing the thoughts of the hackers interviewed by The Reg:

These ideas have created some excitement in the apolitical open source movement (the flossers). Those who spoke to The Register about the Tory promise found it necessary to say the same six words: "I am not a Tory, but...".

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