• Great articles on other sites
  • RSS Great articles on other sites

  • Featured, News - Written by on Tuesday, February 1, 2011 16:05 - 0 Comments

    Open source policy pleases Red Hat, Linux Australia

    Open source organisations Red Hat and Linux Australia have both welcomed the Federal Government’s revised approach to dealing with open source software, which will see a more active approach taken to the technology than that used in the past.

    Withdrawing from its 2005 declared position of “informed neutrality” on open source, late last week the Federal Government announced government agencies would have to consider open source software equally alongside proprietary software when buying products worth more than $80,000.

    The change of policy came days after a decision of the Australian Government Information Management Office to standardise Microsoft’s Office Open XML — a rival format to the ODF standard being promoted by sections of the open source community.

    However Red Hat’s managing director for Australia and New Zealand Max McLaren said in a statement that the company was pleased that AGIMO recognised the role open source software could play in solutions for Australian Government IT requirements. “The Federal Government’s new policy on open source recognises the value that solutions from open source software organizations, like Red Hat, can deliver for the Australian Government in general,” he said.

    McLaren said Red Hat had already had a presence in Canberra for over seven years, providing open source software solutions to both federal agencies and state government departments around the nation. He said the new policy wouldn’t only offer the Government better value for money, but it would also benefit the local open source community at large.

    “AGIMO’s endorsement of Australian Government agencies’ participation and contributions to open source software communities carries great opportunity for the Australian ICT industry,” he said. “Red Hat is an open source company, but we appreciate that we do not have a monopoly on good ideas”.

    McLaren said Red Hat has been growing significantly over the last decade, expanding its list of customers both in the private and public sector. He said the company encourages collaboration, as it can make for better software. “We actively encourage talented people in Government and corporate Australia to contribute their ideas to open source development communities,” he said.

    “The greater the local talent, the greater the opportunity for Australia to spawn software that better satisfies the requirements of not just Australian organisations, but those around the world!”

    Linux Australia President John Ferlito equally expressed his optimism, saying AGIMO’s move had good timing and would have a positive impact on the Australian open source community. He said the policy was a great move forward to give all players equal opportunities in the software-buying field.

    Asked directly whether he thought the policy could involve real change in the way agencies and departments run their IT facilities, Ferlito maintained the new policy reflected the Government’s recommendations as of 2005.

    “The government is already both procuring and using open source software, because in many cases it is the best tool for the job,” he said. He added the new principle will contribute to develop better software for everyone and will promote the knowledge of open source software through those departments which do not have focus on the IT.

    “The advantage of a policy such as this is that it means that departments that don’t have the focus on technology and innovation have been made aware, through policy, that open source options exist, should be considered and must included in tender requests,” Ferlito said.

    Image credit: Sankarshan Mukhopadhyay, Creative Commons

    submit to reddit

    Leave a Comment


  • Get our 'Best of the Week' newsletter on Fridays

    Just the most important stories, one email a week.

    Email address:

    Follow us on social media

    Use your RSS reader to subscribe to our articles feed or to our comments feed.

  • Most Popular Content

  • Enterprise IT stories

    • Super funds close to dumping $250m IT revamp facepalm2

      If you have even a skin deep awareness of the structure of Australia’s superannuation industry, you’ll be aware that much of the underlying infrastructure used by many of the nation’s major funds is provided by a centralised group, Superpartners. One of the group’s main projects in recent years has been to dramatically update and modernise its IT platform — its version of a core banking platform overhaul. Unfortunately, the $250 million project has not precisely been going well.

    • Qld’s Grant joins analyst firm IBRS peter-grant

      This week it emerged that Peter Grant, the two-time former Queensland Whole of Government CIO (pictured), has joined well-regarded analyst firm Intelligent Business Research Services (IBRS). We’ve long had a high regard for IBRS, and so it’s fantastic to see such an experienced executive join its ranks.

    • Westpac dumps desk phones for Samsung Android mobiles samsung-galaxy-ace-3

      The era of troublesome desk phones tied to physical locations is gradually coming to an end in many workplaces, with mobile phones becoming increasingly popular as organisations’ main method of voice telecommunications. But some groups are more advanced than others when it comes to adoption of the trend. One of those is Westpac.

    • Ministers’ cloud approval lasted just a year reverse

      Remember how twelve months ago, the Federal Government released a new cloud computing security and privacy directive which required departments and agencies to explicitly acquire the approval of the Attorney-General and the relevant portfolio minister before government data containing private information could be stored in offshore facilities? Remember how the policy was strongly criticised by Microsoft, Government CIOs and Delimiter? Well, it looks like the policy is about to be reversed.

    • WA Govt can’t fund school IT upgrades oops key

      In news from The Department of Disturbing Facts, iTNews revealed late last week that Western Australia’s Department of Education has run out of money halfway through the deployment of new fundamental IT infrastructure to the state’s schools.

    • Turnbull outlines Govt ICT vision turnbull-5

      Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has published an extensive article arguing that the Federal Government needed to do a better job of connecting with Australians via digital channels and that public sector IT projects needn’t cost the huge amounts that some have in the past.

    • NZ Govt pushes hard into cloud zealand

      New Zealand’s national Government announced a whole of government contract this morning for what it terms ‘Office Productivity as a Service’ services. This includes email and calendaring services, as well as file-sharing, mobility, instant messaging and collaboration services. The contract complements two existing contracts — Desktop as a Service and Enterprise Content Management as a Service.

    • CommBank reveals Harte’s replacement whiteing

      The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has promoted an internal executive who joined the bank in September after a lengthy career at petroleum giant VP and IT services group Accenture to replace its outgoing chief information officer Michael Harte, who announced in early May that he would leave the bank.

    • Jeff Smith quits Suncorp for IBM jeffsmith4

      Second-tier Australian bank and financial services group Suncorp today announced that its long-serving top technology executive Jeff Smith would leave to take up a senior role with IBM in the United States, in an announcement which marks the end of an era for the nation’s banking IT sector.

    • Small business missing the mobile, social, cloud revolution iphone-stock

      Most companies that live and breathe the online revolution are not tech startups, but smart smaller firms that use online tools to run their core business better: to cut costs, reach customers and suppliers, innovate and get more control. Many others, however, are falling behind, according to a new Grattan Institute discussion paper.

  • Blog, Enterprise IT - Jul 5, 2014 13:53 - 0 Comments

    Super funds close to dumping $250m IT revamp

    More In Enterprise IT

    Blog, Telecommunications - Jul 5, 2014 12:12 - 0 Comments

    What should the ACCC’s role be in guiding infrastructure spending?

    More In Telecommunications

    Analysis, Industry, Internet - Jun 23, 2014 10:33 - 0 Comments

    ‘Google Schmoogle’ – how Yellow Pages got it so wrong

    More In Industry

    Blog, Digital Rights - Jun 30, 2014 22:24 - 0 Comments

    Will Netflix launch in Australia, or not?

    More In Digital Rights