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[News] Brazil Embraces Digital Freedom

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President Lula's Speech at FISL 10 (English Translation)

,----[ Quote ]
| This law that is presented (repeats) doesn´t intend to correct abuses of 
| Internet. To tell you the truth, this law achieves to censure. What we may 
| need, fellow Tarso Genro, is to change the Civil Code, we may need to change 
| something there. What we need to do is to charge the people who work with the 
| digital issues, with the Internet. We need to charge, not prohibit or 
| condemn. (incomprehensible) It is a police-like interest to make a law that 
| lets people enter the house of others to know what they are doing, maybe 
| kidnapping their computers. To act this way is not possible; it is not 
| possible.        


Open source's double standard on government bias

,----[ Quote ]
| For example, Open Source Initiative President Michael Tiemann rightly decries 
| an alleged tie between the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation's charitable 
| donations and Microsoft's "cabinet-level access to inform policy."  


Open Source Incentives

,----[ Quote ]
| On the alarm front, I heard specific confirmation of a storyline I've been 
| following, which is that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is basically 
| telling governments: if you want contributions/investments from us, then 
| you'll give Microsoft cabinet-level access to inform policy, and you'll use 
| Microsoft products. For example, donations to educational initiatives require 
| installing and teaching Microsoft products. It is similar to another story 
| line reported by Roy Shestowitz. My informant told me that she was 
| fortunately able to point out to the President that this was against Brazil's 
| sovereignty and interest, and is one of the reasons that President Lula came 
| to FISL, to show is support for the freedoms that "software livre" (aka free 
| software, aka open source) mean to Brazil.          


Lula's Free Java Ring

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian economy is powered by the Java platform - even their new Free 
| digital TV standard uses it. They took the decision to use Java for so much 
| in part when we (Bruno, myself and a number of others) assured them, a number 
| of years ago, that there would be Free implementations. The story ever since 
| has been snowballing investment in Java skills and an economy capable not 
| only of supporting its own needs but also of exporting skills - they've been 
| making Java a priority for years.       



Brazil is aggressively expanding their Telecentro program, community free
software workshops and technology education

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian National Support Project for Telecentros (public computer labs
| with free, public Internet access) intends to support the deployment of 2 -
| 3,000 new Telecentros and towards achieving the goal of 10,000 active
| Telecentros by the year 2010. Almost all of the Telecentros are built using
| entirely free and open source software. Adding to the social benefit of the
| project, the rapid timetable will be met by training Brazilian youths on how
| to install Linux, configure the workstations and servers, and get the
| Telecentros online, up and running.


Open source software in Brazil: too many projects to keep up with!

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian free software movement is in such high gear that it is almost
| impossible to keep up on all the new developments and projects that are
| happening throughout the country. Brazil is larger in size than the
| continental United States and has a population of almost 200 million people.
| Given the strong support of free software by the Brazilian government at all
| levels (federal, state and municipal).
| [...]
| Given the spectacular example set by Brazil in using cutting-edge open source
| platforms for public schools and public administration, there is some hope
| being expressed in the US infotech press that perhaps President Obama will be
| receptive to breaking the US government’s “dependency on proprietary
| software.” Given the recovery package’s goals of fixing the current economic
| crisis, President Obama’s policymakers should focus on governments throughout
| South America, who continue to demonstrate that the millions of US taxpayer
| dollars spent on licensing proprietary software are the perfect example
| of “wasteful spending.”


Open source software in Brazil: too many projects to keep up with!

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian free software movement is in such high gear that it is almost
| impossible to keep up on all the new developments and projects that are
| happening throughout the country. Brazil is larger in size than the
| continental United States and has a population of almost 200 million people.
| Given the strong support of free software by the Brazilian government at all
| levels (federal, state and municipal).
| For example, a new technology being used is the Digital Boards project for
| the public schools. The board is almost 6-1/2 feet wide and it’s sensitive to
| the touch of a magnetic pen that is connected to a computer running Vix
| Linux, a distribution specially customized for educational proposes by the
| City Hall of Vitória, in the state of Espírito Santo.


KDE in nearly all public schools in brazil.

,----[ Quote ]
| Today I was in a public school near where I live for a interview with
| Nazareth, the coordinator of a social-inclusion project for the less
| afortunate kids in brazil, that live in 2 poor-communities: Alto do
| Coqueirinho and Bairro da paz.


Now Brazil Goes Big on the GNU/Linux Desktop

,----[ Quote ]
| At the end of last year I wrote about a big Brazilian project to provide
| 150,000 GNU/Linux notebooks for schools. Now the Brazilian Ministry of
| Education has topped that by ordering 324,000 "green" workstations running on
| GNU/Linux (although I can't quite tell whether this is as well as or instead
| of - anyone know?).


Brazilian Ministry of Education Embraces Open Source in a Big Way

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian government officially embraced open source software in its
| schools, announcing it had selected Userful,Positivo, and ThinNetworks to
| supply 324,000 virtualized desktops in each of the country's municipalities.
| This is not only the largest deployment of virtualized desktops in the
| world -- it's also the largest single deployment of Linux desktops.


Brazilian government lists preferred Open Source applications

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian government wants its public administrations to check an Open
| Source reference guide before launching new IT projects. This moves taken by
| the Government of the 5th world economy, confirms Brazilian leadership and
| long term commitment on open source software.


Brazil Seeks 150,000 GNU/Linux Notebooks for 300 Schools

,----[ Quote ]
| It will be interesting to see who wins this contract, since it could well
| influence others looking to roll out large numbers of GNU/Linux notebooks.


Universities that do not use Free Software: Time for a boycott?

,----[ Quote ]
| I received an email recently from a young man in Brazil who wanted me to come
| to his university and talk to the students and faculty about using Free
| Software. I am normally happy to advise universities to use Free Software,
| but usually this is done in conjunction with some large conference held at
| the university or some other venue. I just do not have the time to visit each
| and every school. But I did investigate the university of the student and
| found that Microsoft was indeed a sponsor of the University. In fact, the
| university had a large banner on the front page of their web site talking
| about Microsoft as a partner. It was the first time I saw a university
| advertising a commercial firm on their home page.
| I started doing a little more investigation of the student's city and found
| that there was another university in the same city that was very active with
| Free Software. In fact, they had a mirror of Debian software and were
| actively promoting Free Software.
| [...]
| Ten years ago a boycott might not have been possible. There were too few
| universities that had access to enough really good Free Software to ask the
| students to make a "sacrifice" in forsaking a university that only used
| proprietary software to teach. Now, with the range of Free Software that is
| available, and with the marketplace crying out for new programmers trained in
| Free Software development techniques, and with many more good universities
| using Free Software to teach courses, the university "marketplace" is ready
| for the boycott.


Free Software in the Stores

,----[ Quote ]
| Today I was in a France-based store called fnac here in Brazil and I noticed
| some interesting free software packages available on the shelves:
|     * Ubuntu 8.04 "Hardy Heron"
|     * Ubuntu 7.10 "Gutsy Gibbon"
|     * OpenOffice.org 2.0
|     * Freedows 2004 Standard and Professional (does this distro still even
|     exist?)


Linux in the Stores

,----[ Quote ]
| Linux hardware is finally starting to make its debut in consumer stores. Here
| in Brazil, in the store Saraiva, I noticed two KDE 3-based laptops, both
| apparently built upon some version of Kubuntu; one wasn't that customized and
| had the normal bar and K menu at the bottom, and the other one was so
| customized at first I thought it was Vista with the taskbar put on the side!


Famelix and the dangers of combating Windows

,----[ Quote ]
| As with any GNU/Linux distribution, exact figures for use are hard to come by
| for Famelix. However, other users of the distribution include 62 military
| units, and schools and digital inclusion centers throughout South America. On
| its home site, the distribution has had more than 22 million downloads -- at
| least 14 million of them in the last 12 months, thanks mainly to the first
|       ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
| releases to support German, English, and Italian in addition to the original
| Spanish and Portugese. By any standard, the distribution seems a success.



Deploying KDE [and Debian] to 52 million young people

,----[ Quote ]
| By the end of this year 29,000 labs serving some 32,000,000 students will be
| fully deployed and in active use.
| By the end of next year (2009) those numbers will have swelled to 53,000 labs
| serving some 52,000,000 students.


Brazilian government lists preferred Open Source applications

,----[ Quote ]
| The Brazilian government wants its public administrations to check an Open
| Source reference guide before launching new IT projects.
| The "Instruction for Contracting IT Services" was published last week by the
| Secretary of Logistics and IT, part of the Ministry of Planning. The
| instruction is intended prevent equivalent software solutions from being
| developed several times.
| "The portal should be consulted by public managers before starting a new
| software development project, to check whether a comparable software solution
| already exists", an introduction on the web site explains. If a solution
| exists, the procurement can then be adapted to improve on that software
| project.


Litrix v7.4 Linux LiveCD

,----[ Quote ]
| Screenshots gallery...


Brazilian banks look to Linux for ATMs

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| Brazilian banking giant Banco do Brasil this year is preparing to start a
| massive migration of one of the world’s biggest ATM fleets to the GNU/Linux
| operating system.


The brazilian Election Supreme Court migrates 430 thousand voting machines to
GNU / Linux

,----[ Quote ]
| The brazilian Election Supreme Court announced at April 4th 2008, that the
| 2008 elections at Brazil will use GNU / Linux electronic voting machines with
| software digital authentication.
| The Tribunal Superior Eleitoral (the brazilian Election Supreme Court),
| officially announced on April 4th, 2008, that the brazilian 2008 elections
| will use 430 thousand electronic voting machines migrated from VirtuOS and
| Windows CE to GNU / Linux and open source softwares for security and auditing
| defined by proper law.


Linux Voting Machines Save US$ 8 Millions in Brazil

,----[ Quote ]
| Brazilian Goverment will save US$ 8 Millions in election between 2008 and
| 2018. The economy is due to the use of Linux in the eletronic voting
| machines, made by Procomp-Diebold,


Why Brazil Loves Linux

,----[ Quote ]
| Brazil imported the anti-Microsoft stance common in American geeks, but on
| top of the usual arguments Microsoft is foreign. This adds fuel to the flame.
| To the Brazilian Microsoft hater, not only there is an “evil monopoly”, but
| its profits are repatriated and its jobs are elsewhere. Practices like the
| 3-program limitation on Vista Starter further erode good will (Brazilians
| call it the “castrated Windows” among other colorful names). Add a dash of
| anti-American sentiment and you’ve got some serious resistance. This fiery
| mood has a strong influence, from the teenager hanging out in #hackers on
| Brasnet to IT departments to the federal government. Even in a rational
| self-interest analysis, one might rightly point out that if free/open source
| software (FOSS) were to wipe out Windows, negative effects on Brazil’s
| economy are likely minimal. The wealth, jobs, and opportunity created by
| Microsoft aren’t in Brazil (productivity gains might be, but that’s a whole
| different argument). The trade offs of a potential Linux/Google take over are
| different when there’s no national off-the-shelf software industry, plus
| Google’s revenue model works beautifully in a developing country. This mix of
| ideological and rational arguments torpedoes Microsoft’s support.


Microsoft gouging Brazilians for 20 percent of income

,----[ Quote ]
| Ever wonder why Brazil and other BRIC countries are so hot on open source,
| including Linux? Gustavo Duarte gives several reasons, not the least of which
| is the punitive pricing that Microsoft inflicts on these developing markets.
| In the case of Brazil, Microsoft pillages businesses to the tune of 20.1
| percent and consumers at a 7.8 percent clip. Some people pay tithing to their
| church; Brazilians are asked to pay a tithe to Microsoft. Perhaps this is
| indicative of Microsoft's self-important belief?


Brazilian Enterprises Embrace Open Source

,----[ Quote ]
| Linux and related open-source software has gained an increasingly important
| role among large local corporations in Brazil, according to a recent study.
| The Instituto Sem Fronteiras, a Brazilan research firm, found that 73 percent
| of companies with more than a thousand employees are open source users.

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