(via David M. Berry). This is a report on OSS by the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, which is charged with offering a balanced view on key policy issues. The report is well-balanced and measured, and it comes out very strongly in favour of open source, and it even mentions the software patent debate, while calling them software patents and not computer implemented inventions, which is a good step.

The report concludes with the following remarks:

  • Acceptance of open source software is increasing in both the public and private sector. The Office of Government Commerce report states that it is a viable and credible alternative to proprietary software for infrastructure and for most desktop users.
  • The government’’s OSS policy promotes a ‘level playing field’ in which OSS solutions should be considered alongside proprietary ones in IT procurements.
  • It is increasingly acknowledged that there is a role for both open source and proprietary approaches and that a combination of both approaches stimulates creativity and innovation.

This is a very welcome development, and it should help to bring forward the availability and viability of OSS as a valuable businness model.


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