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Washington Post: Europe's Microsoft Alternative

Nov 04, 2002, 13:00 (20 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Ariana Eunjung Cha)

[ Thanks to Philip Webb for this link. ]

"Luis Millan Vazquez de Miguel, a college professor turned politician, is succeeding where multibillion-dollar, multinational corporations have failed. He is managing to unseat Microsoft Corp. as the dominant player in the software industry, at least in his little part of the world.

"Vazquez de Miguel is the minister of education, science and technology in a western region of Spain called Extremadura, a mostly rural expanse of olive trees and tiny towns with 1.1 million inhabitants. In April, the government launched an unorthodox campaign to convert all the area's computer systems, in government offices, businesses and homes, from the Windows operating system to Linux, a free alternative.

"Already, Vazquez de Miguel said, more than 10,000 desktop machines have been switched, with 100,000 more scheduled for conversion in the next year. Organizers regard the drive as a low-cost way to bring technology to the masses in the impoverished region..."

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