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PR: Brazil, IBM Team For New Technology Center

IBM and the Brazilian government today announced they have
signed a cooperative agreement for the establishment of a Knowledge
and Technology Center, which will promote and develop open standard
solutions in Brazil, under the auspices of the Information
Technology Institute (ITI). The Ministry of Culture and the
University of Brasilia (UnB) are also involved in the project.

The CDTC will encourage the popularization of open standard
solutions by training technicians, and supporting professionals and
users of public administration systems. The intention is to
establish a growing group of open standard users. The CDTC aims to
stimulate and supply tools for the Brazilian market to adopt new
information technology standards, based on open-code software.

Set up at UnB in Brasilia, the CDTC will support collaborative
development and technological migration projects from public
agencies and small companies involving the use of
open-standard-based solutions. IBM and ITI will manage the CDTC and
will also define its priorities and strategies.

For ITI’s president Sérgio Amadeu this partnership is one
more opportunity for the Government to encourage adoption of this
type of technology: “CDTC will allow a vigorous dissemination of
knowledge throughout the country, in addition to expanding the
national technological intelligence.”

For Rogerio Oliveira, chairman of IBM Brazil, helping the
Brazilian government to establish technological references with
open standards in the public sector is equally important, since the
computerization based on open standards brings benefits such as
interoperability, scalability and lower costs.

“For developing countries such as Brazil and for governments
focusing on fostering economic development and diversification of
the information technology industry, open standards can help to
play a leading role in the government strategy towards economic
development,” said Mr. Oliveira. “More than 60 countries have
already adopted open source. To reach its deserved standing on the
international economic scene, Brazil plans to use these new
technologies in a structured way, and as a development
catalyst.”

Today’s announcement is a continuation of IBM’s commitment to
open standards in Brazil. A previous one is Project Linux at Porto
Digital, Recife (Pernambuco), which came about through a
partnership with the local government and other institutions. In
that case, students have the chance to learn about information
technology through IBM technology and open systems.

In the State of Rio de Janeiro, a Linux laboratory has been
donated by IBM Brazil to the Pandiá Calógeras
Technical School (ETPC), sponsored by the National Steel Company
(CSN) Foundation. There, lab developed activities allow students to
work with Linux while developing a potential labor pool not only
for CSN, but also for other neighboring companies in Volta
Redonda.

IBM also takes part in a social partnership with Anima
Mundi/Anima School and the Pure and Applied Mathematics Institute
(IMPA), through its Reinventing Education Project, towards
developing the Movement Universal Analyzer Animation Software
(MUAN). This is an application developed on a Linux platform by the
IMPA team with the goal of introducing animation into elementary
school curricula. IBM Brazil has donated IBM notebooks and digital
cameras to IMPA and the Anima School.

The CDTC’s first task this year will be to train 700 public
service professionals from the Education Technology Nuclei
(NTEs)–a government program aimed at supporting public schools and
state education bureaus. The courses will be given in all Brazilian
state capitals and their goal is to explain all possibilities and
benefits of open standard-based models. Next year, this training
will be complemented by a seminar in Brasilia for some 100 public
service professionals.

The Brasilia CDTC will have:

  • A Development Laboratory with resources necessary for the
    creation and generation of open software testing;
  • A Library that will be a source for consultation, intellectual
    support and a means to build awareness of the knowledge generated
    at the Center;
  • Classroom training;
  • A Portal with a goal or providing access to all knowledge and
    techniques generated at CDTC for public agencies, small companies
    and the general public;
  • A Call Center that will support the government and small
    companies looking for more information about using open software in
    their operations; and
  • An operating team comprising five government experts, two
    government/university managers, five IBM trainees and one UnB
    master/doctor. Team members will be supervised by a government
    appointee.

The CDTC’s creation is the first partnership between the
Brazilian government and IBM Brazil, following the signing of a
letter of intent at the end of 2003 for the development of projects
using open-standard solutions. The letter formalized both parties’
interest in concentrating efforts and resources to implement social
programs using this technology.

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