Two on Linux, Open Source in India

The Week: It’s Worth Every Dollar

“Say the L-word, and Gates plays the role of the die-hard
American advocate, dismissing it offhand. Then how is it growing?
He goes all out to prove that it is at the cost of UNIX and other
platforms. In fact, the biz-whiz is quite keen that not many people
take it seriously.

“Estimates are that the sale of software and computers in India
is set to explode in the coming years, even as it has plateaued or
started to decline elsewhere in the world. A major source of new
computer buys would be the government. A lot of government
departments which were computerised early on use outdated software
that have to be replaced. India’s emergence as a software
development hub, and back-office point for MNCs also spells
business to Microsoft.

“But not if Linux’s popularity keeps rising. The Kerala and Goa
governments have issued notifications to all its departments to
implement Windows only if free-source softwares like Linux are not
suitable for the task at hand. Not surprisingly, then, Gates had a
one-to-one with Kerala Industries Minister Kunhalikutty in Delhi.
Karnataka, virtually the IT hub of the country, has a policy of
implementing free-source software. With ambitious localisation and
e-governance drives going on in many states, this is business that
Microsoft cannot afford to miss out on…”


rediff.com: ‘Open Source Software Key to Export Growth’

“An international report on e-commerce trends has said the
continued high growth rate of information technology (IT) exports
of developing countries will depend on the adoption of open source
software products like the Linux operating system.

“The E-Commerce and Development Report 2002 by the United
Nations Conference on Trade and Development says while products
like semi-conductors and electronic data processing now represent a
larger share of the exports of developing nations than traditional
products, the share of ‘commoditised products,’ which have low
value addition, is still higher…”


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