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[News] Free Software in Massachusetts Promoted in the Press

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Saving money — and Mass. — with open source software

,----[ Quote ]
| Arguably, white papers and reports take a long time to influence the 
| direction of business. Nonetheless we in Massachusetts are well down the open 
| source path. It was in Massachusetts that the Open Software Foundation was 
| launched in 1988 and flourished. Its current iteration, The Open Group, is 
| still working hard to influence the use of open software in commercial 
| software development. Larger employers with a Massachusetts presence, such as 
| Red Hat and Novell, advocate for the use of open source. And smaller 
| companies, including Project.net and Best Practical, provide open source 
| software that powers businesses, which in turn build products that eventually 
| feed the consumer stream.          



Massachusetts Should Use Free Software Exclusively

,----[ Quote ]
| Governments in Massachusetts are increasingly dependent on software to 
| operate. Citizens access important services via the Internet, and critical 
| public documents are now digitally archived. Buying new software isn't like 
| buying new desks and chairs for the office anymore. The makers of software 
| now exert substantial control over how government operates.    



Interview with Christian Fernandez, of Binary Freedom

,----[ Quote ]
| Unfortunately, companies like Microsoft have thrown around their
| financial and political weight to combat our work. They defeated a
| measure in Florida through lobbying and the only way this abuse will
| stop is if we continue to fight them.


New MA Governor Proposes New - and Smaller - IT Bond Bill

,----[ Quote ]
| Unfortunately for the Information Technology Division (ITD) in
| particular, and state government in general, the new bill would
| provide only a fraction of the funding that would have been provided
| under last year's legislation. As proposed by Patrick, the bond would
| offer only $95 million, rather than the $250 million originally
| proposed. According to MHT, $75 million would be dedicated to 
| planning and procurement, a further $15 million would fund a
| statewide system to mange performance and measure efficiency of
| agency databases, and $4.9 million would be given to the state
| attorney general's offices for IT projects.
| As a result, it the new bill will fall far short of accomplishing
| what had long been hoped by the ITD. This follows on the heels of
| damage already done, as stated by Gutierrez in his letter of
| resignation
| [...]
| What does this portend for ODF in Massachusetts, and what does
| it tell us about Deval Patrick's plans for the future?
| First, here's what I don't know: as you may recall, both
| Gutierrez and Microsoft lobbyist Brian Burke were appointed
| to a transition working group formed to advise governor-elect
| Patrick on IT matters.


Q&A: Former Mass. CIO feels 'bittersweet pride' after battles with Microsoft,

,----[ Quote ]
| As CIO of Massachusetts from February to November last year, Louis 
| Gutierrez had to endure most of the brunt of Microsoft Corp.'s political 
| wrath over a state policy calling for the adoption of the Open Document 
| Format for Office Applications, or ODF -- a rival to the software vendor's 
| Office Open XML file format.
| [...]
| Do you see any reason for there to be two standards? If you were
| starting blank-slate, there certainly would not be value to creating
| two separate standards. Over time, it has sometimes been useful to
| have the competition of two standards to keep both sides honest.
| But I don't see particular value in the long-term co-existence of
| two separate standards.


,----[ Quote ]
|    Quinn:  Almost to a person, to anybody involved or who knows about
|    the ODF issue, they attributed the story to Microsoft, right, wrong
|    or otherwise. Senator Pacheco may be a bully but I do not believe he
|    is disingenious and would stoop to such a tactic. Senator Pacheco and
|    Secretary Galvin's office remain very heavily influenced by the
|    Microsoft money and its lobbyist machine, as witnessed by their
|    playbook and words, in my opinion.
|    Quinn:  I believe that the ODF decision will stand. I believe MS
|    will continue to do anything and everything it can to stop it. And I
|    know my seat wasn't even empty and they (MS) took another shot at
|    the title, to no avail. This horse is out of the barn and I see no
|    way for it to go back in. Remember, all we are asking for was and is
|    for Microsoft to commit to open and the standards process; so
|    everyone looks really bad if the plug gets pulled at this juncture. 


MA Governor-Elect Names MS Anti-ODF Lobbyist to Technology Advisory Group


The Sorry State of Massachusetts


Microsoft offers schools in Mass. free software (to stop ODF adoption)


Microsoft plays Massachusetts Senate card

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