"Almost exactly one year ago, The Oregonian broke a
story... about heavy-handed tactics by Microsoft Corporation that
would have cost the Portland school district an additional
half-million dollars per year--10 teaching positions--in
'protection money' to avoid a software audit.
"School districts across the state responded by converting their
computers to a new, smarter breed of software called 'open source
software' that is faster, more reliable, more secure--and free.
"The savings, both in the cost of software licenses and the
personnel costs of fixing systems that crash because of bugs and
viruses, were phenomenal. The network administrator of tiny
Riverdale School District, with two schools sandwiched between
Portland and Lake Oswego, found himself with so little work to do
after the conversion that he was able to return to teaching
"If a school district as small as Riverdale can save
three-fourths of a position by switching to open source software,
how much could the government of the state of Oregon, which owns
more than 50,000 computers, save...?"
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