European Software

Reading that the German Foreign Ministry is about to change their computing desktops back from a GNU/Linux-based system to Microsoft Windows and their Office offerings, a thing that has been on my mind for a while comes back again.
I think it would be very worthwhile to start an initiative to foster european software; I think that wherever software produced in europe is available, it should be favored over other products. There are european operating system vendors – especially in the GNU/Linux arena. Why are they not getting the money, but rather the big vendor from Redmont?
There also is the point that I think particularly for sensitive information, an operating system where the code can be audited and traced is a good idea. I am not sure that you should be trusting the operations of a highly sensitive network to a company that is not all transparent about it motives, or its potential connections to the intelligence community in its home country.
I think that strategic investments would also do wonders to stimulate activity in the software market. Working towards the goal of eroding Microsoft’s dominance would be a good thing in my book. Considering that there have been many pushes towards fostering something like a european (or german, or british or …) Silicon Valley, this could just be the way to get the european software industry to focus on providing competitive offerings for basic functionality like office and desktop operating systems.

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