David A. Wheeler's Blog

Wed, 28 Oct 2009

Notes about the DoD and OSS memo

Yesterday I posted about the new 2009 DoD memo about open source software. I’m delighted to see that the word is getting out. Slashdot, Linux Weekly News, and LXer.com all mentioned the new memo and even pointed to my post. Others are noting the new memo too, including CNet’s Matt Asay, InformationWeek’s J. Nicholas Hoover, InformationWeek’s Serdar Yegulalp, NetworkWorld, and The H. Dan Risacher has posted on Slashdot some background and history for this new 2009 DoD memo. He notes, for example, that “The lawyers were by far the biggest delay” in getting this memo released.

There’s some supporting information for this memo at the DoD Free Open Source Software (FOSS) Communities of Interest (COI) site, which posts the memo itself and a supporting DoD Open Source Software Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document.

To help potential users, I’ve updated my presentation Open Source Software (OSS) and the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), which I hope will clarify some things. I should also remind people about the 2003 MITRE study “Use of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in the U.S. Department of Defense”, which showed that in 2003 Free/libre/open source software (FLOSS, FOSS, or OSS) was already widely used in the DoD.

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