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The Guardian: Waking Up to Open Source

Sep 26, 2002, 20:30 (2 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by SA Mathieson)

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"'Before people start leaving the room, I'm not going to speak about broadband in any technical sense,' Richard Allan MP told the parliamentary IT committee's fringe meeting, held on Monday at the Liberal Democrat conference in Brighton.

"After the relieved laughter ended, the Liberal Democrats' spokesperson on IT tried to explain why people will want fast broadband internet access. But Allan thinks that open source software, which can be downloaded free and is written and debugged through the collaboration of its users, could be the clincher that convinces many to move to broadband. 'People want to do things,' he said.

"Allan gave the example of his brother--not an IT specialist--who obtained a fast connection to download CD-burning software. 'He became aware that there was something that could make his life better, and he went on to the internet and found it,' Allan said. 'It's very much a Liberal Democrat theme, of empowerment. It's devolution down to the individual...'"

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