The city of Paris is accelerating its move to free and open-source software as part of a strategy to reduce its dependence on suppliers. It plans to replace more of its server software with free and open-source alternatives, and to install open-source applications on desktops.
Earlier this year, volunteers among the city’s 46,000 staff were invited to download and install open-source software to their desktops, including the Firefox browser and the Open Office.org productivity suite. Now, the city is planning to migrate all the users of one city department or all of those in one of the city’s 20 districts, not just the volunteers, to test a larger migration. The city has 17,000 workstations, up from 12,000 in 2001.
I find this particularly interesting as I still see much resistance to open source in our local schools. Today, I sent out a Python tutorial (via Downes) to a former student of mine, who is now a teacher in a local highschool. He told me that, although thankful for the resource, he couldnâ€™t use it in school as they donâ€™t allow the installation of Firefox (the resource is designed for the Firefox sidebar). So, not only does the school ban the use of a superior, alternative web browser, they effectively block excellent, openly developed content.