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Australian NSW Government Making Way for Linux 92

Posted by timothy
from the step-aside-please-step-aside dept.
seralick writes "Australian IT has reported that the Australian NSW government has established 'Australia's first whole-of-government panel to supply open source software and services to its departments and agencies.' Basically they have opened the way for the wide spread goverment usage of Linux software and services."
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Australian NSW Government Making Way for Linux

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  • by pressesc (873084) on Tuesday April 05, 2005 @03:54AM (#12141965) Homepage
    Firstly, this is old news. The formation of the panel was announced last year, and tenders were called to form the panel. The deadline for tenders was 28 Oct 2004. This is just to inform the people that the panel has closed.

    This in NO WAY makes NSW open source friendly. If anything it makes it harder for anyone in the govt to use open source. What this does is it requires users to buy open source software from a group of designated companies, basically locking small players out of the parket.

    This is bad news [pressesc.com] !!!

    Once again we see how slashdot story leads add so much spin to a story as to distort it completely.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 05, 2005 @04:08AM (#12142014)
    The idea is to present open source as just another tool. The vendor serves as an "abstraction layer". In this way, a NSW government employee, who might be primarily trained in public health for instance, can rely on the systems vendor to take care of the details irrelevant to the public health issues.

    It is what traditional commercial vendors have provided for years. What's new is that it will be implemented on top of Linux instead of Multics or Windows or VM/CMS.

    Looks promising.

  • Hardly surprising (Score:4, Informative)

    by devious concepts (79338) on Tuesday April 05, 2005 @05:37AM (#12142252) Homepage
    This is not a spur of the moment action. Several years ago the NSW ALP had an open meeting regarding open source and more importantly open standards. Yes open standards, it is considerably more important than open source. Open standards span closed and open source and allow us to get on with business.

    Anyway, two years ago Della Bosca frankly admitted he did not know much of open source let alone linux, yet he was prepared to learn. To be honest he represents what we want. A politician who knows their limitations but is not afraid to ask. The result is a favourable movement towards open standards, which I believe is the way for governments to go.

    Three cheers for della bosca, he may not understand it but he is working for a better open world.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 05, 2005 @06:22AM (#12142333)
    Go Dave!

    For some more context stuff, a contact of mine is an IT consultant hired by various large corporates primarily because he is tied into the nsw.gov.au old school tie network.

    He mentioned during a linux conversation that practically everyone in the NSW state government is "desperate to get rid of that Microsoft crap". Almost every department has people that have been hurt many many times by Microsoft, and have simply had enough.

    The key problem has been accountability. They are public servants, and so of course are never going to move until they are 100% sure they can do it and not suffer political/career repurcussions in the process.

    The (previously mentioned here) NSW Roads and Traffic Authority linux conversion was seen as their white knight project. From what I understand, that has been a strong success. With that out of the way, and now suppliers they can use without fear of repurcussion, I would expect to be seeing not just the odd single linux projects, but a whole swath of projects through most of the entire NSW government over the coming year.

    And you can bet once half of NSW is enjoying no failures from viruses and greatly reduced prices, the rest of .gov.au is going to model their efforts after them.

    Hazzah!

    Adam K
  • Re:Wow! (Score:3, Informative)

    by lifes a cluster (808591) <windows.sucks.nutz@gmail.com> on Tuesday April 05, 2005 @09:57AM (#12143794)
    That's not how government procurements work in my line of business. Actually, the contractors for the most part suggest and make the purchases. That's really because we simply have our finger on technology more so than the civil servants. It's nice to see that governments are starting to see the viability for linux. On my contract, we have been using Linux for clustering for several years - and that's simply not going to go away. And of course now that SGI and CRAY have linux offerings, it will only get better for us linux geeks in the HPC arena.

A language that doesn't have everything is actually easier to program in than some that do. -- Dennis M. Ritchie

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