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[seul-edu] Re: [OS:N:] Good Post on Open Source

Dan Kegel wrote:
> chris calise wrote:
>> Hello Everyone.
>> The good fight goes on.
>> Here is a post from Oregon Rep. Phil Barnhart,
>> introducer of H.B. 2892
>> ...  The Microsoft
>> people simply had no desire to work out a compromise. The answer to my
>> question of their lobbyist, "So, you just want this bill to go away?"
>> was an unequivocal, "Yes." The answer to their question of me, "Have you
>> given up on Open Source Software for Oregon?" is an unequivocal, "NO."
>> I welcome your comments, thoughts and suggestions. Please feel free to
>> contact my office if there is anything my staff or I can do for you. It
>> is often a frustration but always an honor to serve you.
> Thanks for forwarding that!
> Rep Minnis said publicly, as she killed HB 2892:
>  > ... let me make it clear that this bill died for a simple reason: it is
>  > a solution in search of a problem. As stated in the 2001 Oregon Revised
>  > Statutes §291.038(3):
>  >
>  > "Rules, plans and specifications shall be formulated to insure that
>  > information resources fit together in a statewide system capable of
>  > providing ready access to information, computing or telecommunication
>  > resources. Rules, plans and specifications shall be based on industry
>  > standards for open systems to the greatest extent possible."
>  >
>  > Furthermore, §291.038(8)f clearly defines open systems:
>  >
>  > "Open systems’ means systems that allow state agencies freedom of choice
>  > by providing a vendor-neutral operating environment where different
>  > computers, applications, system software and networks operate together
>  > easily and reliably."
>  >
>  > I appreciate Mr. Barber's efforts to encourage state agencies to use
>  > open-source software and I share his desire to save money at all levels
>  > of state government. However, state agencies already have the ability
>  > under existing law to use open-source software.
> But it seems clear to me that §291.038(3)'s mandate of "open systems
> to the greatest extent possible" is not being fulfilled, since
> Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office do not provide a vendor-neutral 
> operating environment.
> Indeed, MS Windows and MS Office are increasingly hostile to competitors.
> IMHO this section should effectively prohibit the adoption of MS Office 
> 2003
> if more neutral options such as OpenOffice are available and suitable.
> Perhaps leading by example would be appropriate here.
> Have any Oregon legislators considered switching their computer systems to
> open source?  If not, let's see if we can coax them into trying it.
> The least painful step would be to install OpenOffice.org1.1beta on
> their Windows systems, and try it out side-by-side for a while.
> Once they're over that hurdle, switching to Linux would be a lot easier.
> I've been helping the OpenOffice.org team sort through their incoming bug
> reports (see http://kegel.com/openoffice/ for why & how you should do 
> this, too :-),
> and I would *love* to hear from any legislators whether
> OpenOffice's 1.1 beta meets their needs for office suite software,
> and if not, how it falls short.
> [I'm sending this Rep Bernhardt, too.]
> - Dan

This is app pretty interesting. But I think the government has lost
sight of things. I forget the outcome of the M$ trial but if it was
indeed found that they are/were a monoply then why is the government
(The ones that prosecuted M$) still purchasing from them? This would
appear to be a conflict of interest in the biggest way.

I feel what needs to happen is a class action lawsuit against the
governemt for contuing to buy in to Microsoft even after the trial.

Also, somebody needs to research in to what it is eactly the government
criteria is when purchasing decisions need to be made. I know this much.
They need to get bids from several sources and go for the lowest cost
solution. A good example of this is the now famous TCP/IP protocal. If I
remember correctly it was known as the lowball protocol because of the
costs  incurred for develeopment and implementation. I think that if it
is found that the criteria is worded in such a way - It must run
Microsoft products or be Microsoft Compatible. Then it would then need
legislature to get them to change. And this smacks of the government
feedig a monoply by not allowing other markets to get in. And certainly
the statement SHOULD NOT EVEN BE UTTERED - But it doesn't run under Windows.

If the criteria does not list specifics then the entire system and even
the people who run it need to be made aware and vendors of open souce
software need to push forward. Not only the vendors but the people.
Government employees might scoff at this but quite frankly they broke
their own rules and regulations.

I hope this makes sense, buecause quite frankly there are already things
in place that governs how federal and state make purchasing decisions. I
spent many years in the US Marine Corps and every time we wanted to make
a purchase in town we had to get three bids. Lowest one won out.

Take care

~Kris Anderson