The Cabinet Office has published an open source procurement toolkit for the public sector on its website. It said the purpose is to ensure that there is a level playing field for open source and proprietary software and that some of the myths associated with open source are dispelled. The toolkit includes six documents: All …
With apologies for the cynicism
Being free, FOSS does not fit well into a framework of government cronyism and back room deals. It might save money, but it can't help anyone politically. To stay in power, the government needs to "look after" the right people, ie. shovel cash and contracts into into large coorporations. Sir Humphrey needs powerful friends, not beardy ones.
As I pointed out to a post below, Open Source does not not stop HM Goverment from hieing firms to work on open source code. These firms could get all the backhanders that normal firms do, just that their open source code would have to be handed over to the government (or other parties that get the binaries).
Open Source is not the same as FOSS & even Open Source does not guarantee that everyone can have access to the code, only that people who are given binaries will also be given source. Personally as the government is paid for by taxes I think most of the code should be made available to public screwtany.
Dare we hope that the government has done something right?
Open Source Presumed More Flexible?
"when there is no significant cost difference open source should be chosen on the basis of its flexibility"
Open Source software is only more flexible than proprietary software if you have the necessary skills, tools, time and money to edit and recompile it otherwise it is just as closed as its proprietary rivals and this perceived benefit is completely bogus.
Ah but then the government can hire another SW house to work on the product for them and fix it up to do whatever they like & when that project or SW house tanks they can hire another one to continue the work.
On top of that if some of the SW code is publicerlly available there is a chance some busy body with a half a brain will stop people running off down a totally stupid implementation root... well if they are lucky at least. Current problem is that they end up paying more and more to the same company as the alternative will be to start again from scratch; by hieing companies to contribute to open source code they might just get something that works without having to pump endless cash down a black hole.