Last week, I had a chance to give a talk on the history of Open Source in the US Government at the Salon du Logiciel Libre et des Technologies Ouverts du Québec. They were an extraordinarily welcoming crew, and Laurent Bounin and friends did a wonderful job with the speakers and the space. It was the first time I’ve addressed an audience inside a working ferry terminal.
It was an update to the US Government vs. Open Source talk that Karl and I had given at OSCON a couple years ago. I was worried that so much government jargon would trip up the francophone audience, but it turns out that acronym parsing is a skill that’s portable across languages.
During the Q&A, and in the conversations afterwards, it was clear that everyone was genuinely excited about the provincial government’s new pro-open source position. In my last visit to Canada, the questions were mostly about why an agency would move to open source. During this trip, everyone was much more concerned with how, and hungry for success stories and template policy and procedures that would clear them a path. That, my friends, is progress.
Laurent promised that my slides would be available on their web site, in case you’re interested.