God and Bad News from Public Administrations
Monday October 09th 2006, 1:13h
Filed under: FLOSS, Politics

On the one side, last week there was good news from France suggesting the Open Document Format as the future standard in office file formats for public administration:

In his report, “On Equal Terms,” National Assembly Deputy Bernard Carayon calls for a law making it compulsory for French government departments to use ODF when they create or distribute documents, and suggests that France ask its European partners to do likewise when exchanging documents at a European level. […] In the report, Carayon also recommended the government fund a research center dedicated to open-source software security, and set up a system to help national and local government agencies exchange information about best practice in the use of open-source software.

Unfortunately, Swiss government IT seems to be rather subordinated to Microsoft’s sales forces as reported by Inside-IT (Christoph Hugenschmidt) and being verified by the Swiss radio magazin Echo der Zeit on Friday by the report “Kantone wehren sich gegen zu teure Software:

Die Computer in den Verwaltungen der Kantone und des Bundes werden mit Programmen von Microsoft betrieben. Beim Einkauf der Software stützen sich Bund und Kantone auf einen gemeinsamen Rahmenvertrag ab, der dieses Jahr erneuert werden musste. Microsoft diktierte dabei die Regeln, und das kommt die öffentliche Hand nun teuer zu stehen. Pikant dabei: Der Bund stellte sich auf die Seite von Microsoft.

PS: I cut out the mp3 report on OSS and Microsoft from the DRS podcast using cutmp3 -i echoderzeit_20061006.mp3 -a 17:05 -b 21:10 -o OSSInBundesverwaltung.mp3


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