OPEN SOURCE inLocal Government Tim Willoughby Assistant Director LGMA
What Open Source mean?Open source software (OSS) means the source code of the software is open for viewing and editing. The users have the freedom to edit the source code, rename it and use it as they wish. This is contrary to proprietary software, which does not allow the buyers/users to look at the source code. OOS can be priced.Free Software (FOSS) – not priced at all.The similarity between the two is that both OSS and free software enable the users to view and modify the software code.
Types of Software Free Software – free as in free speech Proprietary Software – restricted use, hidden source code Open Source Software – with source code Freeware – free as in free lunch Source Code Open Closed P R P>0 Open Proprietary I Source (OSS) C E P=0 Free Freeware Or &Open Shareware Source (FOSS)
Open Source- Lowering Barriers for EntrantsLow cost and scalable infrastructure (Linux,Apache,MySQL, PHP (LAMP) )• Quality software available at no licenses cost• Key software components available forintegration• Can make changes to Open source code forextra value• Development and run time environments forfast and iterative deployments (PHP, Perl,Python, Ruby on Rails)• Communities for instant help and fastinnovation cycles• Open Source as a Engine for Web 2.0
FOSS : It is matter of liberty not price.Software is “free” if it provides all four freedoms:Freedom 0: The freedom to run the program for any purpose.Freedom 1: The freedom to study and modify the program.Freedom 2: The freedom to copy the program so you can help your neighbour.Freedom 3: The freedom to improve the program, and release your improvements to the public, so that the whole community benefits. FOSS – Free & Open Source Software
Characteristic of open source software Based on open standards Community driven Interoperable Innovative Localised Shared Ownership
Local Government Adoption of Open SourceOpen Source in Local Government.• More and more public-sector organizations around the world utilising open source software!• The benefits to be gained from increasing the use of OSS within Vertical Software the typical IT portfolio, includes County Level industry tailored critical core Technology mission Vertical Software that 1. Reduces total cost of ownership Housing | Financial Services 2. Provides higher stability | Information Management | 3. Provides increased security | Library | Auditor| Roads | 4. Gives greater overall control Fire Service | Risk Mgt. |• Horizontal Software represents Dog Warden | utility software used across Community & Family Services industries and includes, | Water Services | Planning messaging, e-mail, collaboration | Franchise | Environment | tools and generic business application toolsets shown below. | Web / Internet Server |CMS | CRM | Firewall | eMail | File/Print | Horizontal Software Office Automation| Database | Desktop / Server Operating Utility and Middleware System | Development Environment / Language(s) |Graphics | Software GIS | Project Management Software|
Open Source Benefits Business model relies on service fees not license fees. Open Source is community driven and community serving Proprietary formats leads to vendor lock-in. what if vendor collapsed? Charge too much? Monopoly? Software as a commodity. Open standards - Greater independence from companies. Customisable – community can develop their own add-ons.80-20 Rule Applies to Open Source Also: -- 80% code of open source software is written by self motivated individual developers, voluntarily . 20% code is written key developers/Project Leaders.
Open Source Benefits Con’d Interoperability Software is better when it is transparent. Secure –Nothing is left open for system vulnerability.
Open Source Disadvantage Proprietary software has more features and more user friendly. Difficult to integrate with proprietary software. Lack of service & support. Some open source solution not mature enough & continue to improve. Compatibility issues.
Open Source - powering e-governmentIn the area of e-Government, government spending on software development can be made more efficient if it adopts the open source model that promotes the sharing of software code. Local Government, Agencies and Departments have the same requirements and instead of each government department developing separate programs for the same task, they could share the same code base and make minor changes to suit the needs of each state.
Hurdles in the growth of Open Source? Lack of Policy Skill Development Change in the way we Procure Positive Analysis Willingness to Learn
How to Integrate Open Source into our IT strategy • Insist on Open Standards - Increases Agility - flexibility and responsiveness Evaluate Open Source and Commercial software options • Can use a mixture of open source and proprietary • Don’t need a separate Strategy— interoperability I migration considerations are important • Like all Software Solutions – have to Balance up-front costs against recurring costs
What do we have to do? Understand the Community and Maturity of Open Source - Broad industry support are important Sustainable business models are critical Healthy ecosystem of Solution Providers and Business Partners essential Establish policies for working with Open Source software Educate company teams about OSS before they work with it Implement a management system to review, approve, and track the use of OSS inside the company, and contributions of company software assets to external OSS projects Understand Open Source Licensing – need to establish a process to help us understand the terms of the licenses and the procedures required to comply with them Make decisions based on both business and technical factors
In the Future Currently we have a stable Microsoft Platform The is not a huge supply of Open Source As our environments age and need to be managed out, our demand for open source will increase along with the increasing population of consumers who are also shifting away from propietary solutions. Need to be placed well to meet this demand, understand the possibilitites, potentials and have an Open Mind.
ConclusionsCan be fanatic or a zealot, but the show must go on●● A growing number of OSS Government communities acrossEuropeEvery migration to Open Source Software needs a change●programme and TCO to justify it● OSS need not be an all or nothing scenario nor the universalanswer to IT future● The higher the dependence on proprietary office productivitysoftware the bigger the task to move to OSSNeed to overcome the support issue●
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