City of Austin and OpenOffice/Open Source Trials
Well, I guess enough time has passed to where I can acknowledge some of the articles that came out about OpenOffice.org and the City of Austin.
Where the story first appeared
The Slashdot posting
The Associated Press article. Just one of many news sites that picked up the story...
Anyway, I just wanted to post that, "Yes" - I was the person who posted the original email to the Austin Linux Users Group and, "Yes" - I have been actively "cheerleading" in the City to promote not only OpenOffice.org but also Linux and Free Software in general. We've had a lot of successful projects based around free/open source software and we are continuing strongly down that path. The CIO (Pete Collins) really understands the issues and it has been a real pleasure working with him and the rest of the City staff to try and find those places where we can save taxpayers money.
Granted, OpenNetworks has kinda taken a back seat over the last 6 months as I was the primary person designing/testing the multiple pilots at the City (and at some times, the *only* person doing them, which is a whole other story (Blaster patching... :) but I'm really planning on devoting more time to OpenNet's mission and will really be trying to get out there and communicate more with non-profits. This is probably the most important time, technically speaking, to try and get the message out about free/open source software as big corporate interests are trying to patent open standards and free software that has been around for 25+ years. These are *very* good reasons to stop using MS formats for business and use published, open standards instead. Not only will you prevent your data from being owned by a single corporation but you will save tons of money to boot. What could be better?