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Jul 22, 2009

Open Source for America - OSA

by J. Robert Burgoyne — last modified Jul 23, 2009 11:14 AM
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With the U.S. Federal Deficit at all-time record high levels, and many U.S. State budgets deeply in the red, the time is right for a broad push to deploy and use open-source software at all levels of government. Technology entrepreneur Tim O'Reilly recently founded an organization to bolster this effort: Open Source for America (OSA).


There aren't many valid reasons to exclude open-source software within government, other than it removes opportunity for certain software vendors.

There is no licensing fee to evaluate and use open-source software. Open-source software can usually be adapted to the specialized needs of the entity using the software. The talent pool of open-source developers is broad.

Certainly if we're going to try to reform the health care system in the U.S., open-source software should play an important role. This article makes a good case for open-source software in health care.

The government software I would like to see as open-source software is voting software. Make the USA's voting software open-source, allow everyone to review the code, and let it be managed in a responsible way. It's amazing that we had such big problems in the 2000 elections and yet even in 2009 we're basically using the same software systems, while a developing country like Brazil uses open-source voting software.

True Blade publishes this Business Blog and a Technology Blog. We assume the readers of our Technology Blog are familiar with and use open-source software, but from our interactions with the business community, there is a need to provide more information and education regarding the benefits of open-source software.

Read more about Open Source for America at: