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Re: [News] British Government Bamboozled by Microsoft and Lock-in

Roy Schestowitz wrote:

> Hash: SHA1
> Newham and the Prisoner's Dilemma
> ,----[ Quote ]
> | First the bad. Newham demonstrates that once Microsoft products are used
> | for a large number of functions in a large organisation, there is a
> | natural tendency to use even more of them because of the way that
> | Microsoft links and binds them together. As more and more
> | Microsoft-based skill sets are acquired, the switching costs become very
> | high ? which is precisely why Microsoft adopts this tightly-integrated
> | approach.
> | 
> | This means that, realistically, there is little scope for swapping in
> | open source solutions to replace those of Microsoft, even when the total
> | cost of acquiring and running the software is lower. The re-training
> | costs will always be a barrier.

That simply isn't true.
If you have a siege mentality like that then you can mold it
to whatever final decision you take!!!

So using the same mentality as above and then concluding 
there is no further scope for uptake of micoshaft products
because of the cost of loosing future flexibility is 
perfectly valid.

The best corrective action they can take is to allow
dual policies for the softare and PCs and letting two
IT teams manage the services on a competitive basis.
So one IT team will be open source.
And both open source team and closed source will compete
on their own merits. I can see open source guys trouncing
the closed source on budget alone by offering Open Office.
And then winning the security arguments for all their servers.
And when new applications are being commissioned, the 
open source guys are going to be in there insisting WINE
compatibility for all new productsa and trouncing windummies
by running all the applications faster under Linux
and switching them over to Linux and saving money all round.

> | [...]
> | 
> | Indeed, that was perhaps the most important insight that I gained from
> | yesterday's meeting: that local councils find themselves in something of
> | a Prisoner's Dilemma when it comes to choosing whether to go with
> | Microsoft or free software.
> | 
> | Individually, it makes sense to do deals with Microsoft, since councils
> | can use the threat of turning to open source to obtain better deals. But
> | if they *all* turned to open source, the overall cost savings would be
> | much greater.
> `----
> http://www.computerworlduk.com/community/blogs

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